Friday, October 19, 2007

HEART AND SOUL

The history of Joy Division sounds like it would be one of those crazy, sordid rock n roll THS. Eclectic artist commits suicide amid working class carnage of the Thatcher regime in 80's Britan. But it couldn't be further from that old chesnut. Partly true. Suicide, wastelands of young Englishmen searching for a vent from an right wing administration that had left them for dead. But Joy Division's anger was as much personal as political and their sound crafted by the band and producer Martin Hannett struck a different chord among the angry young men of the 70's music revolution. Ian Curtis, who died may 18th 1980, left a far more moving legacy than most rock deaths. Not a live fast-die young and leave a good looking corpse suicide, his was one of doom and desperation. One that many an unemployed youth could eerily identify with. The two albums, recorded a year apart, Unknown Pleasures and Closer, redefined not only the musical landscape of the time but how young men perceived themselves in the chaotic days in the height the Tory regime. Bleak, and unremitting, these guys tapped into a much more mature ennui. Once they had released She's Lost Control and Love Will Tear Us Apart, the days of Teenage Kicks had been put to bed forever. To be perfectly frank when I heard Closer for the first time, it scared the shit out of me. They were talking about life and death and love in a truly profound way. A scary way, real. A new voice that seared into ones soul. They created a sound that would be emulated, copied and revered for the next twenty five years. To say they are THE most influential band of the last quarter century is no hyperbole. They are. To see their legacy just look at the bands littered throughout the last quarter century, including the big ones, U2 and REM, and here the nerve jangling guitar first created in Factory Studios, come searing out of every pore and every chord they play. Look at New Orders critical and commercial success, to see their vision realised. "Here are the young men the weight on their shoulders"
All of this comes about with the advent of Anton Corbijn's film Control.
I am thrilled that the man who created a photographic style all his own based on his love of this one band, got to make this film. I was ready with my sweaty $10 to be first in line and but on writing this entry two weeks ago I became wistfully blue, the thought of my youth long gone, it all seemed too much to go through again, so I left it to my compadres to evaluate the film which by all accounts is just... great. Thank you once again Ian.

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