Neha Patil (Editor)

Killer (Adamski song)

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21 March 1990


7" 12" CD


"Bassline Changed My Life" "I Dream of You"

Acid house soul IDM experimental rock

"Killer" is a song by British acid house producer Adamski. Written by Adamski and Seal and produced by Adamski, "Killer" was Adamski's breakthrough single, but is now more notable for featuring Seal as a vocalist. A major hit in the UK, it reached number one, spending four weeks at the top of the chart in May and June 1990. In total, the single sold over 400,000 copies in the UK, earning it a BPI Gold certification.



Lyrically, the title of the song comes from the line "It's the loneliness that's the killer," which occurs only once in the introduction to the Seal version and not at all in the Adamski version. The distinctive opening bassline and keyboard melody during the chorus, however, are preserved in almost every version of the song in some form.

The song also contains the lyrics "Racism in amongst future kings can only lead to no good, and besides, all our sons and daughters already know how that feels", which were reused in Seal's song "Future Love Paradise" featured on his debut album. "Killer" was featured in the film Miami Twice based on the TV series Only Fools and Horses.

Seal version

In 1991, Seal re-recorded "Killer" for his eponymous debut album, produced by Trevor Horn. The single release of Seal's version peaked at #8 in the UK, squeezed onto the Billboard Hot 100 at #100 and peaked at #9 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart with a remix by William Orbit.

The music video for this version used computer-generated science-fiction themed imagery, largely built around a partial re-creation of the M. C. Escher print Another World. The video was produced and directed by Don Searll. The song won Best British Video at the 1992 Brit Awards.

4 January 2005 saw a new single release of "Killer", containing new remixes of both "Killer" and "Crazy". This brought the single back to the Hot Dance Club Play chart, where it reached number one.

U.S. maxi-single (1991)

  1. "Killer" (single version)
  2. "Killer" (William Orbit remix)
  3. "Whirlpool" (live)
  4. "Killer" (live)
  5. "Come See What Love Has Done" (live)
  6. "Hey Joe" (live) ("Billy Roberts" cover)
  7. "Killer" (William Orbit dub)

U.S. maxi-single (2005)

  1. "Killer" (Peter Rauhofer remix part 1)
  2. "Killer" (Peter Rauhofer remix part 2)
  3. "Killer" (Morel's Pink Noise vocal mix)
  4. "Killer" (DJ Monk remix)
  5. "Killer" (Jim Albert's Loneliness Is the Killer mix)
  6. "Crazy" (Ananda Project vocal mix)
  7. "Crazy" (Orange Factory mix)

George Michael version

In 1991, George Michael performed "Killer" live at the Wembley Arena in a version that was released on the 1993 EP Five Live. "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" was also recorded and released on the same album. The two songs were blended together in the live performance, then remixed several times. The P.M. Dawn extended and radio remix for the "Killer"/"Papa" combination was released in 1993. Michael shot a video for the release, in which he did not appear personally. It was during the time when Michael refused to exploit his outward look, which he thought would distract the audience from the music, his main concern. The video was directed by Marcus Nispel.

Track listing

  1. "Killer/Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" (English edit)
  2. "Killer/Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" (Ligosa Mix)
  3. "Killer/Papa Was a Rollin' Stone" (P.M. Dawn Remix)

ATB version

Trance act ATB recorded a version in 1999, released as a single on 31 May 1999 in Germany and on 19 September 2000 in the United States. The ATB version peaked at #4 on the UK Singles Chart and #36 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart. Featuring vocals by Drue Williams, it was the producer's first fully vocal-based song under the ATB name.

The song uses elements from both Adamski and Seal's versions, updated with more contemporary production techniques. The UK radio edit differs from others in that it includes ATB's signature guitar sound.

The song featured on the acclaimed 2000 mix album CreamLive.

Track listings

  • "Killer" (Germany release)
    1. "Killer" (Video Edit) 4:08
    2. "Killer" (Radio Edit) 4:01
    3. "Killer" (Killer Mix) 5:56
    4. "Killer" (Original Mix) 6:15
  • "Killer" (US release)
    1. "Killer" (UK Radio Edit) 3:25
    2. "Killer" (Radio Edit) 4:00
    3. "Killer" (2000) 5:52
    4. "Killer" (Trevor & Simon Remix) 6:50
    5. "Killer" (Lost Witness Remix) 7:45
    6. "Killer" (Joe Fandango Remix) 7:11
    7. "Killer" (Video Edit) 4:06
  • "Killer" CD 1 (UK release)
    1. "Killer" (UK Radio Edit) 3:28
    2. "Killer" (Lost Witness Remix) 7:48
    3. "Killer" (Lock 'n Load Remix) 8:25
  • "Killer" CD 2 (UK release)
    1. "Killer" (Killer 2000 Mix) 5:55
    2. "Killer" (Trevor Reilly & Simon Foy Remix) 6:52
    3. "Killer" (Joe Fandango Remix) 7:11
  • "Killer" (The remixes) (Canada release)
    1. "Killer" (UK Radio Edit) 4:02
    2. "Killer" (Joe Fandango Remix) 7:16
    3. "Killer" (Lost Witness Remix) 7:49
    4. "Killer" (Lock N' Load Remix) 8:29
    5. "Killer" (Joe Fandango Dub) 5:27
    6. "Killer" (Lost Witness Dub) 7:45
    7. "Killer" (Trevor & Simon Remix) 8:57
    8. "Killer" (Gareth Jones Radio) 3:20
  • "Killer 2000" (Australia release)
    1. "Killer 2000" (UK Radio Edit) 3:26
    2. "Killer 2000" (Killer 2000 Mix) 5:51
    3. "Killer 2000" (Lost Witness Vocal Remix) 7:45
    4. "Killer 2000" (Lock 'n Load Vocal Remix) 8:23
    5. "Killer 2000" (Trevor & Simon Remix) 6:50
    6. "Killer 2000" (Joe Fandango Mix) 7:11

    Other versions

    Other versions of "Killer" were performed by Northern Kings on the 2008 album Rethroned, Nina Hagen on her 2011 album Volksbeat, power metal band Angel Dust on the 2002 album Of Human Bondage, girl group Sugababes as a B-side to the 2003 single "Shape", Scottish garage rock band Sons and Daughters as a B-side to their 2007 single "Gilt Complex", UK alternative rock band 2:54 as a B-side to the 2012 vinyl single "Sugar" and Rhythm Police on the 2009 remix release "Killer". In 2010 Tiësto contributed a remix of the song for the game DJ Hero 2. In 2013, British rock band Bastille also made a more electronic heavy cover of "Killer" on their second mixtape Other People's Heartache Part 2.


    Killer (Adamski song) Wikipedia

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