Being home ill for numerous days has given me plenty of opportunity to listen to music, a better alternative to hating life which has taken up most of my time. I was able to make a huge dent in clearing out the Not Rated Yet playlist but I have also revisited some long-time favorites. Enter one of my all-time favorite bands, New Order.
I refuse to enter the “which band is better” argument between Joy Division and New Order. Yes, I wish Joy Division lead singer Ian Curtis had not committed suicide the eve of the band’s U.S. tour with The Buzzcocks. It would have been amazing to witness what else that great band could have created. However, credit vocalist/guitarist/keyboardist Bernard Sumner, bassist/keyboardist/backing vocalist Peter Hook and drummer/keyboardist Stephen Morris for picking up the pieces, adding Gillian Gilbert to the fold and moving forward.
I only had one opportunity to see New Order live, headlining a great roster at Compton Terrace back in 1987 (or 1988, can’t remember) with Echo and the Bunnymen and Gene Loves Jezebel opening. Love the band but I have to admit they were not the greatest live act I have ever seen. Listening to these guys over the weekend though reminded me just how awesome their studio output was. The fact Sumner and Hook are in a bitter feud leads me to believe the original foursome will not be playing together again anytime in the near future, although Sumner, Morris and Gilbert are back together with two new members and have some U.S. dates planned, including Coachella next month.
So many great songs … how about a New Order Top Ten list, tfronky style? Without further adieu and yes, in order according to yours truly:
- “Ceremony” – 1981 single
- “The Perfect Kiss” – Low-Life (1985)
- “Procession” – 1981-1982 EP (1982)
- “Blue Monday” – 1983 12″ single
- “Age of Consent” – Power, Corruption and Lies (1983)
- “Fine Time” – Technique (1989)
- “Cries and Whispers” – 1981-1982 EP
- “Temptation” – Substance (1987)
- “Regret” – Republic (1993)
- “Weirdo” – Brotherhood (1986)
A few key points.
- “Blue Monday” was NOT included on the original pressing of Power, Corruption and Lies.
- New Order had a habit of creating and releasing multiple versions of the same song. I prefer the version of “Temptation” recorded in 1987 for the Substance compilation and the rerecording of “Ceremony” once Gillian Gilbert joined the band. “Ceremony” was one of the last songs written when Joy Division was still a band.
- “Procession” was the band’s second single and “Cries and Whispers” was a B-side to the band’s third single “Everything’s Gone Green”. “Cries and Whispers” was also mistakenly labeled as “Mesh” on the single for “Everything’s Gone Green”, a mishap which caused that song to be mislabeled on many of the band’s subsequent compilation releases.
I’m a music nerd, I know. Deal with it. Now give me your Top Ten. Cheers!