There is a strange earnestness within the panels of Killer Groove. Each of the panels feel as though the reader is a first-hand observer of the events that are taking place. With each concussive movement, there is this fantastic grace of pace done by Ollie Masters, which is then executed exquisitely by Eoin Marron who makes all of the characters yearn for more in life. This desire to become more, to want more, is the crux of Killer Groove. It’s this wonderfully absurd, yet sensible assessment of people aspiring to gain more than what they have.
Within the narrative, we follow a character who finds that his musical ability grows in strength once he has murdered someone. It’s almost as if you were watching a more sci-fi version of HBO’s Barry. Despite its comically absurd premise, Masters weaves a tale that allows for more intimate human moments whilst still being able to convey fantastic set pieces. For all the fanfare of this book, it’s no surprise that there has been consistent critical acclaim in the work produced by Masters, Marron, Belaire, and Otsmane-Elhaou. Each member of the team is an innovator of their craft and manages to bring depth to something as ludicrous as a musician who becomes more talented through murder.
Genuinely, my favorite aspects of this volume were the moments where an orphaned girl and a private investigator share these familial bonds through simple things like smoking. Even though that sentence reads as absurd, it is grounded in such a fervent feeling that you cannot deny the emotional connections you hold for these characters.
All of Marron’s artwork holds this wonderful vintage ’70s aesthetic, as though the panel was projected in panels via film. Everyone reads, and importantly feels, like they are the ’70s. From wonderful shading to unique silhouette designs, Marron captures the decade’s atmosphere. Even more impressive is Bellaire’s gorgeous coloring that enacts this variation in the lens. It’s almost as if it has all been caught on film, with each piece giving the pages a unique visual texture. The subtle bridge for all of these is the magnificent lettering by Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou, who has a unique flair for adding these unique bits of handwritten balloons. Within it all, there is this wonderful flair of the heart that persists in all of this wonderful volume.