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In the Mix: New Order for the Non-New Order Fan

Posted by Andrew Unterberger on September 12, 2007

There’s not a problem that I can’t fix, ‘coz I can do it in the mix

The great thing about being a New Order fan is that they experience a revival approximately every 14 months. A new album, a new box set, a new band or producer citing them as an influence (Jacques Lu Cont, we hardly knew ye), people’ll use just about any excuse to bring back New Order. And that’s nothing but good news as far as I’m concerned–despite that I don’t listen to them all too much on my own anymore, they’re still definitely my favorite band ever, and I love an excuse to dive back into their super-extensive back catalogue.

This time, it’s the release of Anton Corbijn’s recent Joy Division biopic Control, which has once again sparked up that age-old debate: would Joy Division have continued in their greatness had singer Ian Curtis not killed himself (spoiler alert, I guess), or was the transformation into New Order for the best? To me, there’s just about nothing to this debate at all–I believe the heights scaled by New Order during the first ten years or so of their reign of pop supremacy are far greater than any the band reached with Curtis, or by any other 80s band for that matter. However, not all are so convinced, and thus, they need some convincing.

Hence, I was comissioned (or, rather, volunteered myself) to create a New Order mix for a JD supporter not necessarily convinced of the band’s post-Curtis worth. Rather than just create a one-disc mix of the band’s best and best known songs (which for most intents and purposes, already exists and is called Substance), I decided to slack off on the New Order songs everybody knows–nothing off disc 1 of Substance besides “Confusion” and the original ’82 version of “Temptation,” no “Regret,” not even “Age of Consent” or “Love Vigilantes”. There’d be no way for me to create a one-disc mix to summarize the whole band’s catalogue anyway, so doing this at least takes off some of the pressure.

Instead, I decided to focus on the band’s second-tier, which, if not quite as rapturous and awe-inspiring as their best work, is just as cool and arguably even more fascinating. So I included at least one song off every album (minus 2005’s Waiting for the Sirens Call, which we here at IITS still refuse to officially acknowledge the existence of), a bunch of their weirder a’s and b’s (where “Murder” fits in their catalogue is still beyond me) and even some of their unreleased stuff. Hopefully it’ll show that New Order were a lot more than your average synth-pop band, and how there’s something in their catalogue for just about everyone. Plus, it’s New Order, you know it’s gonna be fucking good.

A Fond Farewell to Your Soul: New Order for the Non-New Order Fan:

  1. “Temptation” (Original ’82 12″)
  2. “As it is When it Was” (Brotherhood)
  3. “Ruined in a Day” (Republic, single)
  4. “Confusion” (’87 Version from Substance)
  5. “Love Less” (Technique)
  6. “Turn the Heater On” (Keith Hudson cover, non-album BBC session)
  7. “Your Silent Face” (Power, Corruption & Lies)
  8. “Fine Time” (Technique, single)
  9. “Elegia” (Low-Life)
  10. “Lonesome Tonight” (Substance, “Thieves Like Us” b-side)
  11. “Primtiive Notion” (Get Ready)
  12. “Mesh” (1981-1982 EP, NOT the song mislabeled as “Mesh” on Substance)
  13. “Dreams Never End” (Movement)
  14. “Touched By the Hand of God” (Non-album single)
  15. “Murder” (Limited non-album single)
  16. “Leave Me Alone” (Power, Corruption & Lies)
  17. The Happy One” (theme music from TV special)

think of “The Happy One” as a bonus track, it’s too ridiculous to be anything else.

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2 Responses to “In the Mix: New Order for the Non-New Order Fan”

  1. Awesome mix (naturally). Nice timing too, what with my Seconds on “Leave Me Alone” being up today. Can you remind me what the real title of the song called “Mesh” on Substance is again?

  2. Andrew Unterberger said

    “Cries and Whispers.” Also a pretty great song.

    Link to Ian’s excellent article for anyone else reading this blog:

    http://www.stylusmagazine.com/articles/seconds/new-order-leave-me-alone.htm

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