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New Order is an iconic band whose contributions to the world of music are still being felt. They came into existence after the disbandment of Joy Division in 1980. Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook, and Stephen Morris started the band, and soon after, Gillian Gilbert joined. New Order went on to become one of the most influential and innovative synthpop bands of the 80s and beyond. In this article, we will take a closer look at New Order and their contribution to synthpop.
Origins and Formation
New Order came into existence in 1980 after the tragic death of Joy Division's lead singer Ian Curtis. Joy Division was on the cusp of major success, as their second album "Closer" had just been released. The sudden and unexpected death of Curtis meant that the remaining members of the band had to think about their future. After a brief hiatus, they decided to form a new band with a new name: New Order.
The band got its name from a set of headlines in The Guardian newspaper that read: "New Order of Management Takes Control of Factory." And just like that, New Order was born.
The first New Order album, Movement, was released in 1981. It was a bit of a departure from the post-punk Joy Division sound and showed the band moving toward a more electronic sound. The album received mixed reviews, with some critics praising the band's move toward electronic music, while others felt that they had abandoned their Joy Division roots.
Power, Corruption & Lies
The band's second album, Power, Corruption & Lies, was released in 1983, and it was a game-changer. It marked the beginning of a new era for the band, and it showed their ability to experiment with different sounds and styles. The album is still considered one of the greatest synthpop albums of all time. It features hit singles like "Blue Monday" and "Age of Consent" and incorporates a mix of dance, rock, and electronic music.
Low-Life, Brotherhood, and Substance
New Order continued to evolve with every album they released. Low-Life was released in 1985 and marked a further shift toward electronic music. The album features classic tracks like "The Perfect Kiss" and "Sub-Culture." Brotherhood followed in 1986 and included "Bizarre Love Triangle," one of the band's most beloved songs. Substance, a compilation album, was also released in 1987 and featured their most successful singles to date.
Technique, Republic and First Breakup
In 1989, New Order released the highly acclaimed album Technique which included hit tracks like "Fine Time" and "Run." It was followed by Republic in 1993 which included the top 10 hit single "Regret." After this album, the band went on hiatus, and members began pursuing solo projects.
Reformation and Music Complete
In 2011, New Order announced their reformation. They went on to release their tenth studio album, Music Complete, in 2015 to critical acclaim. It was their first album without founding member Peter Hook, but it did receive praise for its return to their signature synthpop sound.
New Order's story is incomplete without mentioning their involvement in BeMusic, a subsidiary of Factory Records that focused on producing and releasing dance music. New Order played a crucial role in the development of BeMusic, and it allowed them to experiment with new sounds and genres. Some of their most iconic songs, like "Blue Monday" and "Confusion," were released under the BeMusic label.
Influence, Style and Legacy
New Order has been an influential band ever since they burst onto the music scene in the 80s. They helped redefine pop music and popularize electronic sounds and dance beats. They've inspired countless musicians across many genres and continue to influence new generations of music lovers to this day. Their distinct style has left an indelible mark on popular music, and their innovative use of synthesizers and elaborate production style has been replicated by many bands.
Awards and Nominations
Over the years, New Order has won several awards and nominations for their contributions to music. Some of their most significant accolades include the British Academy's Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Song Collection, and the Q Magazine's award for the Greatest Album of All Time for Power, Corruption & Lies. They've also been nominated for Grammy Awards, MTV Music Awards, and more.
New Order has gone through a few lineup changes throughout their career. Founding members Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook, and Stephen Morris continue to be the core members. Gillian Gilbert left the band in 2001 but returned in 2011 for the reformation of the band.
New Order has established itself as one of the most influential bands of the last 40 years. Their music continues to be loved by fans across the world, and they've inspired many musicians over the years. Critics have praised their innovation and style, and they have even earned a spot in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
New Order's album covers were often striking and visually appealing. Some notable covers include the minimalist artwork for Power, Corruption & Lies, and the vibrant, colorful cover for Technique.
Current and Former Members
New Order's most recent lineup consists of Bernard Sumner, Stephen Morris, Gillian Gilbert, and Phil Cunningham. Founding member Peter Hook left the band in 2007 and has since gone on to pursue a successful solo career.
Why did Joy Division change their name to New Order?
The decision to change their name was not an easy one, but it came down to wanting to move on after Ian Curtis's death. The band wanted to avoid comparisons to Joy Division and to establish a new identity. They also wanted to create something that was different from what they had done before.
Why did the members of New Order fall out?
There were several reasons for the band's internal tensions, including creative differences, financial disputes, and personal issues. The departure of longtime bassist Peter Hook was acrimonious, and the two parties have been publicly feuding for years.
When did New Order split?
The band went on hiatus in 1993, and members pursued solo projects. They reunited in 1998 and continued to tour and record music until their final breakup in 2007. They reformed again in 2011 and have been playing and releasing music since.
Quick Tips and Facts
- New Order's biggest hit is the single "Blue Monday," which is the best-selling 12" single of all time.
- The band's name comes from a phrase used by members of Management, a UK TV show, which referred to process improvements in a factory.
- New Order has received British Academy's Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Song Collection and has been nominated for several Grammy Awards.
- The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2019.
New Order is one of the most innovative and influential synthpop bands of all time. They have inspired countless musicians and continue to be celebrated for their experimentation, production style, and distinctive sound. Their legacy endures to this day, and their impact on popular music is immeasurable. Whether you're a longtime fan or a newcomer to their music, New Order remains an essential part of the synthpop landscape and a musical powerhouse unlike any other.