Joy Division

Joy Division were an English rock band formed in Salford in 1976. The group consisted of vocalist Ian Curtis, guitarist/keyboardist Bernard Sumner, bassist Peter Hook and drummer Stephen Morris.

Sumner and Hook formed the band after attending a Sex Pistols concert. While Joy Division's first recordings were heavily influenced by early punk, they soon developed a sound and style that made them one of the pioneers of the post-punk movement. Their self-released 1978 debut EP An Ideal for Living drew the attention of the Manchester television personality Tony Wilson, who signed them to his independent label Factory Records. Their debut album Unknown Pleasures, recorded with producer Martin Hannett, was released in 1979.

Curtis suffered from personal problems including a failing marriage, depression, and epilepsy. As the band's popularity grew, Curtis's condition made it increasingly difficult for him to perform; he occasionally experienced seizures on stage. He committed suicide on the eve of the band's first American tour in May 1980, aged 23. Joy Division's second and final album, Closer, was released two months later; it and single "Love Will Tear Us Apart" became their highest charting releases.

The remaining members regrouped under the name New Order. They were successful throughout the next decade, blending post-punk with electronic and dance music influences.[1]

Joy Division
Joy Division promo photo
Joy Division c. 1979:
Morris, Curtis, Sumner, Hook
Background information
Also known asWarsaw (1977–1978)
OriginSalford, England
Years active1976–1980
Associated actsNew Order
Past members



On 20 July 1976, childhood friends Bernard Sumner and Peter Hook separately attended a Sex Pistols show at the Manchester Lesser Free Trade Hall. Both were inspired by the Pistols' performance. Sumner said that he felt the Pistols "destroyed the myth of being a pop star, of a musician being some kind of god that you had to worship".[2] The following day Hook borrowed £35 from his mother to buy a bass guitar.[3] They formed a band with Terry Mason, who had also attended the gig; Sumner bought a guitar, and Mason a drum kit. After their schoolfriend Martin Gresty declined an invitation to join as vocalist after getting a job at a factory,[4] the band placed an advertisement for a vocalist in the Manchester Virgin Records shop. Ian Curtis, who knew them from earlier gigs, responded and was hired without audition.[2] Sumner said that he "knew he was all right to get on with and that's what we based the whole group on. If we liked someone, they were in."[5]

Buzzcocks manager Richard Boon and frontman Pete Shelley have both been credited with suggesting the band name "Stiff Kittens", but the band settled on "Warsaw" shortly before their first gig, a reference to David Bowie's song "Warszawa".[6][7][8] Warsaw debuted on 29 May 1977 at the Electric Circus, supporting the Buzzcocks, Penetration and John Cooper Clarke.[8] Tony Tabac played drums that night after joining the band two days earlier.[8][9] Reviews in the NME by Paul Morley and in Sounds by Ian Wood brought them immediate national exposure.[10][11] Mason became the band's manager and Tabac was replaced on drums in June 1977 by Steve Brotherdale, who also played in the punk band Panik.[12] Brotherdale tried to get Curtis to leave the band and join Panik, and even had Curtis audition.[13][14] In July 1977, Warsaw recorded five demo tracks at Pennine Sound Studios, Oldham.[15] Uneasy with Brotherdale's aggressive personality, the band fired him soon after the sessions: driving home from the studio, they pulled over and asked Brotherdale to check on a flat tyre; when he got out of the car, they drove off.[16]

In August 1977, Warsaw placed an advertisement in a music shop window seeking a replacement drummer. Stephen Morris, who had attended the same school as Curtis, was the sole respondent. Deborah Curtis, Ian's wife, stated that Morris "fitted perfectly" with the band, and that with his addition Warsaw became a "complete 'family'".[17] To avoid confusion with the London punk band Warsaw Pakt, the band renamed themselves Joy Division in early 1978, borrowing the name from the sexual slavery wing of a Nazi concentration camp mentioned in the 1955 novel House of Dolls.[14][18] In December, the group recorded their debut EP, An Ideal for Living, at Pennine Sound Studio and played their final gig as Warsaw on New Year's Eve at the Swinging Apple in Liverpool.[19] Billed as Warsaw to ensure an audience, the band played their first gig as Joy Division on 25 January 1978 at Pip's Disco in Manchester.[20]

Early releases

Joy Division were approached by RCA Records to record a cover of Nolan "N.F." Porter's "Keep on Keepin' On" at a Manchester recording studio. The band spent late March and April 1978 writing and rehearsing material.[21] During the Stiff/Chiswick Challenge concert at Manchester's Rafters club on 14 April, they caught the attention of music producer Tony Wilson and manager Rob Gretton. Curtis berated Wilson for not putting the group on his Granada Television show So It Goes; Wilson responded that Joy Division would be the next band he would showcase on TV.[22] Gretton, the venue's resident DJ, was so impressed by the band's performance that he convinced them to take him on as their manager.[3] Gretton, whose "dogged determination" was later credited for much of the band's public success, contributed the business skills to provide Joy Division with a better foundation for creativity.[23][24] Joy Division spent the first week of May 1978 recording at Manchester's Arrow Studios. The band were unhappy with the Grapevine Records head John Anderson's insistence on adding synthesiser into the mix to soften the sound, and asked to be dropped from the contract with RCA.[25][26]

Joy Division made their recorded debut in June 1978 when the band self-released An Ideal for Living, and two weeks later their track "At a Later Date" was featured on the compilation album Short Circuit: Live at the Electric Circus (which had been recorded live in October 1977).[27][28] In the Melody Maker review, Chris Brazier said that it "has the familiar rough-hewn nature of home-produced records, but they're no mere drone-vendors—there are a lot of good ideas here, and they could be a very interesting band by now, seven months on".[29] The packaging of An Ideal for Living—which featured a drawing of a Hitler Youth member on the cover—coupled with the nature of the band's name fuelled speculation about their political affiliations.[30] While Hook and Sumner later said they were intrigued by fascism at the time, Morris believed that the group's dalliance with Nazi imagery came from a desire to keep memories of the sacrifices of their parents and grandparents during World War II alive. He argued that accusations of neo-Nazi sympathies merely provoked the band "to keep on doing it, because that's the kind of people we are".[18]

In September 1978, Joy Division made their television debut performing "Shadowplay" on So It Goes, with an introduction by Wilson.[31] In October,[32] Joy Division contributed two tracks recorded with producer Martin Hannett to the compilation double-7" EP A Factory Sample, the first release by Tony Wilson's record label, Factory Records. In the NME review of the EP, Paul Morley praised the band as "the missing link" between Elvis Presley and Siouxsie and the Banshees.[33] Joy Division joined Factory's roster, after buying themselves out of the RCA deal.[34][35] Gretton was made a label partner to represent the interests of the band.[36] On 27 December, during the drive home from gig at the Hope and Anchor in London, Curtis suffered his first recognised severe epileptic seizure and was hospitalised.[37] Meanwhile, Joy Division's career progressed, and Curtis appeared on the 13 January 1979 cover of NME. That month the band recorded their session for BBC Radio 1 DJ John Peel. According to Deborah Curtis, "Sandwiched in between these two important landmarks was the realisation that Ian's illness was something we would have to learn to accommodate".[38]

Unknown Pleasures and breakthrough

Joy Division’s debut album, Unknown Pleasures, was recorded at Strawberry Studios, Stockport, in April 1979.[39] Producer Martin Hannett significantly altered their live sound, a fact that greatly displeased the band at the time; however, in 2006, Hook said that in retrospect Hannet had done a good job and "created the Joy Division sound".[40][41] The album cover was designed by Peter Saville, who went on to provide artwork for future Joy Division releases.[42]

Unknown Pleasures was released in June and sold through its initial pressing of 10,000 copies. Wilson said the success turned the indie label into a true business and a "revolutionary force" that operated outside of the major record label system.[36] Reviewing the album for Melody Maker, writer Jon Savage described the album as an "opaque manifesto" and declared it "one of the best, white, English, debut LPs of the year".[43]

Joy Division performed on Granada TV again in July 1979, and made their only nationwide TV appearance in September on BBC2's Something Else. They supported the Buzzcocks in a 24-venue UK tour that began that October, which allowed the band to quit their regular jobs.[2] The non-album single "Transmission" was released in November. Joy Division's burgeoning success drew a devoted following who were stereotyped as "intense young men dressed in grey overcoats".[44]

Closer and health problems

Joy Division toured Continental Europe in January 1980. Although the schedule was demanding, Curtis experienced only two grand mal seizures, both in the final two months of the tour.[45] That March, the band recorded their second album, Closer, with Hannett at London's Britannia Row Studios.[46] That month they released the "Licht und Blindheit" single, with "Atmosphere" as the A-side and "Dead Souls" as the B-side, on the French independent label Sordide Sentimental.[47]

A lack of sleep and long hours destabilised Curtis's epilepsy, and his seizures became almost uncontrollable.[48] He often had seizures during performances, which some audience members believed was part of the performance. The seizures left him feeling ashamed and depressed, and the band became increasingly worried about Curtis's condition.[49] On 7 April, Curtis attempted suicide by overdosing on his anti-seizure medication, phenobarbitone.[2] The following evening, Joy Division were scheduled to play a gig at the Derby Hall in Bury.[50] Curtis was too ill to perform, so at Gretton's insistence the band played a combined set with Alan Hempsall of Crispy Ambulance and Simon Topping of A Certain Ratio singing on the first few songs. When Topping came back towards the end of the set, some audience members threw bottles at the stage. Curtis's ill health led to the cancellation of several other gigs that April. Joy Division's final live performance was held at the University of Birmingham's High Hall on 2 May, and included their only performance of "Ceremony", one of the last songs written by Curtis.[51]

Hannett's production has been widely praised.[53] However, as with Unknown Pleasures, both Hook and Sumner were unhappy with the production. Hook said that when he heard the final mix of "Atrocity Exhibition" he was disappointed that the abrasiveness had been toned down. He wrote; "I was like, head in hands, 'Oh fucking hell, it's happening again ... Martin had fucking melted the guitar with his Marshall Time Waster. Made it sound like someone strangling a cat and, to my mind, absolutely killed the song. I was so annoyed with him and went in and gave him a piece of my mind but he just turned round and told me to fuck off."[54]

Curtis's suicide and aftermath

Joy Division were scheduled to commence their first American tour in May 1980. Curtis had expressed enthusiasm about the tour,[55] but his relationship with his wife, Deborah, was under strain; Deborah was excluded from the band's inner circle, and Curtis was having an affair with Belgian journalist and music promoter Annik Honoré, whom he met on tour in Europe in 1979. He was also anxious about how American audiences would react to his epilepsy.[55]

The evening before the band were due to depart for America, Curtis returned to his Macclesfield home to talk to Deborah. He asked her to drop an impending divorce suit, and asked her to leave him alone in the house until he caught a train to Manchester the following morning.[56] Early on 18 May 1980, having spent the night watching the Werner Herzog film Stroszek, Curtis hanged himself in his kitchen. Deborah discovered his body later that day when she returned.[57]

The suicide shocked the band and their management. In 2005, Wilson said: "I think all of us made the mistake of not thinking his suicide was going to happen ... We all completely underestimated the danger. We didn't take it seriously. That's how stupid we were."[46] Music critic Simon Reynolds said Curtis's suicide "made for instant myth".[58] Jon Savage's obituary said that "now no one will remember what his work with Joy Division was like when he was alive; it will be perceived as tragic rather than courageous".[59] In June 1980, Joy Division's single "Love Will Tear Us Apart" was released, which hit number thirteen on the UK Singles Chart.[60] In July 1980, Closer was released, and peaked at number six on the UK Albums Chart.[2] NME reviewer Charles Shaar Murray wrote, "Closer is as magnificent a memorial (for 'Joy Division' as much as for Ian Curtis) as any post-Presley popular musician could have."[61]

Morris said that even without Curtis's death, it was unlikely that Joy Division would have endured.[62] The members had made a pact long before Curtis's death that, should any member leave, the remaining members would change the band name.[51] The band re-formed as New Order, with Sumner on vocals; they later recruited Morris's girlfriend Gillian Gilbert as keyboardist and second guitarist. Gilbert had befriended the band and played guitar at a Joy Division performance when Curtis had been unable to play.[63]

New Order's debut single, "Ceremony" (1981), was formed from the last two songs written with Curtis.[64] New Order struggled in their early years to escape the shadow of Joy Division, but went on to achieve far greater commercial success with a different, more upbeat and dance-orientated sound.[1]

Various Joy Division outtakes and live material have been released. Still, featuring live tracks and rare recordings was issued in 1981. Factory issued the Substance compilation in 1988, including several out-of-print singles.[65] Permanent was released in 1995 by London Records, which had acquired the Joy Division catalogue after Factory's 1992 bankruptcy. A comprehensive box set, Heart and Soul, appeared in 1997.

Musical style


Joy Division's style quickly evolved from their punk roots. Their sound during their early inception as Warsaw was described as generic and "undistinguished punk-inflected hard-rock". Critic Simon Reynolds observed how the band's originality only "really became apparent as the songs got slower", and their music took on a "sparse" quality. According to Reynolds, "Hook's bass carried the melody, Bernard Sumner's guitar left gaps rather than filling up the group's sound with dense riffage and Steve Morris' drums seemed to circle the rim of a crater."[66] According to music critic Jon Savage, "Joy Division were not punk but they were directly inspired by its energy".[67] In 1994 Sumner said the band's characteristic sound "came out naturally: I'm more rhythm and chords, and Hooky was melody. He used to play high lead bass because I liked my guitar to sound distorted, and the amplifier I had would only work when it was at full volume. When Hooky played low, he couldn't hear himself. Steve has his own style which is different to other drummers. To me, a drummer in the band is the clock, but Steve wouldn't be the clock, because he's passive: he would follow the rhythm of the band, which gave us our own edge." [2] By Closer, Curtis had adapted a low baritone voice, drawing comparisons to Jim Morrison of the Doors (one of Curtis's favourite bands).[68]

Sumner largely acted as the band's director, a role he continued in New Order.[69] While Sumner was the group's primary guitarist, Curtis played the instrument on a few recorded songs and during a few shows. Curtis hated playing guitar, but the band insisted he do so. Sumner said, "He played in quite a bizarre way and that to us was interesting, because no one else would play like Ian".[70] During the recording sessions for Closer, Sumner began using self-built synthesisers and Hook used a six-string bass for more melody.[71]

Producer Martin Hannett "dedicated himself to capturing and intensifying Joy Division's eerie spatiality". Hannett believed punk rock was sonically conservative because of its refusal to use studio technology to create sonic space.[68] The producer instead aimed to create a more expansive sound on the group's records. Hannett said, "[Joy Division] were a gift to a producer, because they didn't have a clue. They didn't argue".[2] Hannett demanded clean and clear "sound separation" not only for individual instruments, but even for individual pieces of Morris's drumkit. Morris recalled, "Typically on tracks he considered to be potential singles, he'd get me to play each drum on its own to avoid any bleed-through of sound".[72] Music journalist Richard Cook noted that Hannett's role was "crucial". There are "devices of distance" in his production and "the sound is an illusion of physicality".[32]


Curtis was the band's sole lyricist, and he typically composed his lyrics in a notebook, independently of the eventual music to evolve.[73] The music itself was largely written by Sumner and Hook as the group jammed during rehearsals. Curtis's imagery and word choice often referenced "coldness, pressure, darkness, crisis, failure, collapse, loss of control".[66] In 1979, NME journalist Paul Rambali wrote, "The themes of Joy Division's music are sorrowful, painful and sometimes deeply sad."[74] Music journalist Jon Savage wrote that "Curtis's great lyrical achievement was to capture the underlying reality of a society in turmoil, and to make it both universal and personal," while noting that "the lyrics reflected, in mood and approach, his interest in romantic and science-fiction literature."[75] Critic Robert Palmer wrote that William S. Burroughs and J. G. Ballard were "obvious influences" to Curtis, and Morris also remembered the singer reading T. S. Eliot.[76] Deborah Curtis also remembered Curtis reading works by writers such as Fyodor Dostoevsky, Friedrich Nietzsche, Jean-Paul Sartre, Franz Kafka, and Hermann Hesse.[75]

Curtis was unwilling to explain the meaning behind his lyrics and Joy Division releases were absent of any lyric sheets.[74] He told the fanzine Printed Noise, "We haven't got a message really; the lyrics are open to interpretation. They're multidimensional. You can read into them what you like."[70] The other Joy Division members have said that at the time, they paid little attention to the contents of Curtis' lyrics.[69] In a 1987 interview with Option, Morris said that they "just thought the songs were sort of sympathetic and more uplifting than depressing. But everyone's got their own opinion."[77] Deborah Curtis recalled that only with the release of Closer did many who were close to the singer realise "[h]is intentions and feelings were all there within the lyrics".[52] The surviving members regret not seeing the warning signs in Curtis's lyrics. Morris said that "it was only after Ian died that we sat down and listened to the'd find yourself thinking, 'Oh my God, I missed this one'. Because I'd look at Ian's lyrics and think how clever he was putting himself in the position of someone else. I never believed he was writing about himself. Looking back, how could I have been so bleedin' stupid? Of course he was writing about himself. But I didn't go in and grab him and ask, 'What's up?' I have to live with that".[69]

Live performances

In contrast to the sound of their studio recordings, Joy Division's live sound was typically loud and aggressive. The band were especially unhappy with Hannett's mix of Unknown Pleasures, which replaced abrasiveness for a more cerebral and ghostly sound. According to Sumner "the music was loud and heavy, and we felt that Martin had toned it down, especially with the guitars".[2]

During their live performances, the group did not interact with the audience; according to Paul Morley, "During a Joy Division set, outside of the songs, you'll be lucky to hear more than two or three words. Hello and goodbye. No introductions, no promotion."[78] Curtis would often perform what became known as his "'dead fly' dance", as if imitating a seizure; his arms would "start flying in [a] semicircular, hypnotic curve".[2] Simon Reynolds noted that Curtis's dancing style was reminiscent of an epileptic fit, and that he was dancing in the manner for some months before he was diagnosed with epilepsy.[44] Live performances became problematic for Joy Division, due to Curtis's condition. Sumner later said, "We didn't have flashing lights, but sometimes a particular drum beat would do something to him. He'd go off in a trance for a bit, then he'd lose it and have an epileptic fit. We'd have to stop the show and carry him off to the dressing room where he'd cry his eyes out because this appalling thing had just happened to him".[79]


Sumner wrote that Curtis was inspired by artists such as the Doors, Iggy Pop, David Bowie, Kraftwerk, the Velvet Underground and Neu!.[80] Hook has also related that Curtis was particularly influenced by Iggy Pop's stage persona.[81] The group were inspired by Kraftwerk's "marriage between humans and machines",[82] and the inventiveness of their electronic music.[80] Joy Division played Trans-Europe Express through the PA before they went on stage, 'to get a momentum".[82] Bowie's "Berlin Trilogy" elaborated with Brian Eno, influenced them; the "cold austerity" of the synthesisers on the b-sides of Heroes and Low albums, was a "music looking at the future".[80] Morris cited the "unique style" of Velvet Underground's Maureen Tucker and the motorik drum beats, from Neu! and Can.[83] Hook said that "Siouxsie and the Banshees were one of our big influences ... The way the guitarist and the drummer played was a really unusual way of playing".[84] Hook drew inspiration from the style of bassist Jean-Jacques Burnel and his early material with the Stranglers;[85] he also credited Carol Kaye and her musical basslines on early 1970s work of the Temptations.[81] Sumner mentioned "the raw, nasty, unpolished edge" in the guitars of the Rolling Stones, the simple riff of "Vicious" on Lou Reed's Transformer,[86] and Neil Young.[87] His musical horizon went up a notch with Jimi Hendrix,[86] he realised "it wasn't about little catchy tunes ... it was what you could do sonically with a guitar."[87]


Despite their short career, Joy Division have exerted a wide-reaching influence. John Bush of AllMusic argues that Joy Division "became the first band in the post-punk movement by ... emphasizing not anger and energy but mood and expression, pointing ahead to the rise of melancholy alternative music in the '80s."[88]

Joy Division have influenced bands including their contemporaries U2 and the Cure to later acts such as Radiohead, Nine Inch Nails, Neurosis, Interpol, Bloc Party, Editors and rap artists.[89] Rapper Danny Brown named his album Atrocity Exhibition after the Joy Division song, whose title was partially inspired by the 1970 J. G. Ballard collection of condensed novels of the same name.[90][91] In 2005, both New Order and Joy Division were inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame.[92]

The band's dark sound, which Martin Hannett described in 1979 as "dancing music with Gothic overtones", presaged the gothic rock genre.[93] While the term "gothic" originally described a "doomy atmosphere" in music of the late 1970s, the term was soon applied to specific bands like Bauhaus that followed in the wake of Joy Division and Siouxsie and the Banshees.[94] Standard musical fixtures of early gothic rock bands included "high-pitched post-Joy Division basslines usurp[ing] the melodic role" and "vocals that were either near operatic and Teutonic or deep, droning alloys of Jim Morrison and Ian Curtis."[95]

Joy Division have been dramatised in two biopics. 24 Hour Party People (2002) is a fictionalised account of Factory Records in which members of the band appear as supporting characters. Tony Wilson said of the film, "It's all true, it's all not true. It's not a fucking documentary," and that he favoured the "myth" over the truth.[96] The 2007 film Control, directed by Anton Corbijn, is a biography of Ian Curtis (portrayed by Sam Riley) that uses Deborah Curtis's biography of her late husband, Touching from a Distance (1995), as its basis.[97] Control had its international premiere on the opening night of Director's Fortnight at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival, where it was critically well received.[98] That year Grant Gee directed the band documentary Joy Division.[99]

Band members

  • Ian Curtis – lead vocals, guitar, melodica (1976-1980)
  • Bernard Sumner – lead guitar, keyboards, backing vocals, bass (1976-1980)
  • Peter Hook – bass, backing vocals, guitar (1976-1980)
  • Stephen Morris – drums, percussion (1977-1980)
  • Terry Mason – drums (1976-1977)
  • Tony Tabac – drums (1977)
  • Steve Brotherdale – drums (1977)




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External links

24 Hour Party People

24 Hour Party People is a 2002 British comedy-drama film about Manchester's popular music community from 1976 to 1992, and specifically about Factory Records. It was written by Frank Cottrell Boyce and directed by Michael Winterbottom. The film was entered into the 2002 Cannes Film Festival. It received positive reviews.

It begins with the punk rock era of the late 1970s and moves through the 1980s into the rave and DJ culture and the "Madchester" scene of the late 1980s and early 1990s. The main character is Tony Wilson (played by Steve Coogan), a news reporter for Granada Television and the head of Factory Records. The narrative largely follows his career, while also covering the careers of the major Factory artists, especially Joy Division and New Order, A Certain Ratio, The Durutti Column and Happy Mondays.

The film is a dramatisation based on a combination of real events, rumours, urban legends, and the imaginings of the scriptwriter – as the film makes clear. In one scene, one-time Buzzcocks member Howard Devoto (played by Martin Hancock) is shown having sex with Wilson's first wife in the toilets of a club; the real Devoto, an extra in the scene, turns to the camera and says, "I definitely don't remember this happening." The fourth wall is frequently broken, with Wilson (who also acts as the narrator) frequently commenting on events directly to camera as they occur, at one point declaring that he is "being postmodern, before it's fashionable". The actors are often intercut with real contemporary concert footage, including the Sex Pistols gig at the Lesser Free Trade Hall.

Atmosphere (Joy Division song)

"Atmosphere" is a song by English post-punk band Joy Division. It was originally released in March 1980 by the Sordide Sentimental label as the "Licht und Blindheit" (German for "Light and Blindness") package, a France-only limited edition single featuring the track "Dead Souls" as the B-side. Following Ian Curtis's death two months later, it was re-released as a 12" single by Factory Records with "She's Lost Control" as the B-side.

The single was re-released in 1988 to coincide with the release of the compilation album Substance, and a music video was produced for the song.

Bernard Sumner

Bernard Sumner (born 4 January 1956) is an English singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. He is a founding member of both Joy Division and New Order and is widely credited with the latter band's move towards electronica and synthpop.Sumner has also been credted with advancing UK dance music and popularising the use of sequencers. In the early 1990s, he collaborated with former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr as Electronic.

Ceremony (New Order song)

"Ceremony" is a song by Joy Division, released as New Order's debut single in 1981. The song and its B-side, "In a Lonely Place", were written and recorded as Joy Division prior to the death of Ian Curtis. Both were re-recorded and carried over to Joy Division's re-formation under the name New Order.

New Order released the song as a single twice, firstly in January 1981 and secondly in September 1981 featuring new member Gillian Gilbert.

Closer (Joy Division album)

Closer is the second and final studio album by English rock band Joy Division, released on 18 July 1980 by Factory Records. Produced by Martin Hannett, it was Joy Division's first posthumous album and was released two months after the suicide of the band's lead singer and lyricist Ian Curtis.

Following the release of the non-album single "Love Will Tear Us Apart" in June 1980, the remaining members re-formed as New Order. Today, Closer is widely recognised as a seminal release of the post-punk era.

Control (2007 film)

Control is a 2007 British biographical film about the life of Ian Curtis, singer of the late-1970s English post-punk band Joy Division. It is the first feature film directed by Anton Corbijn, who had worked with Joy Division as a photographer. The screenplay by Matt Greenhalgh was based on the biography Touching from a Distance by Curtis's widow Deborah, who served as a co-producer on the film. Tony Wilson, who released Joy Division's records through his Factory Records label, also served as a co-producer. Curtis' bandmates Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook, and Stephen Morris provided incidental music for the soundtrack via their post-Joy Division incarnation New Order. Control was filmed partly on location in Nottingham, Manchester, and Macclesfield, including areas where Curtis lived, and was shot in colour and then printed to black-and-white. Its title comes from the Joy Division song "She's Lost Control", and the fact that much of the plot deals with the notion that Curtis tried to remain

in control of his own life, and yet had no control over his epilepsy and pharmaceutical side effects.Sam Riley and Samantha Morton star as Ian and Deborah Curtis, and the film portrays the events of the couple's lives from 1973 to 1980, focusing on their marriage, the formation and career of Joy Division, Ian's struggle with epilepsy, and his extramarital affair with Belgian journalist Annik Honoré, culminating in his May 1980 suicide. Alexandra Maria Lara plays Honoré, while James Anthony Pearson, Joe Anderson, and Harry Treadaway play Sumner, Hook, and Morris, respectively. The film also features Toby Kebbell as band manager Rob Gretton and Craig Parkinson as Tony Wilson.

Control premiered at the Cannes Film Festival on 17 May 2007 where it won several awards including the Director's Fortnight, the CICAE Art & Essai prize for best film, the Regards Jeunes Prize for best first/second directed feature film, and the Europa Cinemas Label prize for best European film in the sidebar. It went on to win five British Independent Film Awards including Best Film, Best Director for Corbijn, Most Promising Newcomer for Riley, and Best Supporting Actor for Kebbell. It was named Best Film at the 2007 Evening Standard British Film Awards, and Greenhalgh was given the Carl Foreman award for outstanding achievement in his first feature film at the 61st British Academy Film Awards.

Factory Records

Factory Records was a Manchester-based British independent record label, started in 1978 by Tony Wilson and Alan Erasmus, which featured several prominent musical acts on its roster such as Joy Division, New Order, A Certain Ratio, the Durutti Column, Happy Mondays, Northside, and (briefly) Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and James. Like the 4AD label, Factory Records used a creative team (most notably record producer Martin Hannett and graphic designer Peter Saville) which gave the label and the artists recording for it a particular sound and image. The label employed a unique cataloguing system that gave a number not just to its musical releases, but to artwork and other objects.

German camp brothels in World War II

In World War II, Nazi Germany established brothels in the concentration camps (Lagerbordell) to create an incentive for prisoners to collaborate, although these institutions were used mostly by Kapos, "prisoner functionaries" and the criminal element, because regular inmates, penniless and emaciated, were usually too debilitated and wary of exposure to Schutzstaffel (SS) schemes. In the end, the camp brothels did not produce any noticeable increase in the prisoners' work productivity levels, but instead, created a market for coupons among the camp VIPs.The women forced into these brothels came mainly from the Ravensbrück concentration camp, except for Auschwitz, which employed its own prisoners. In combination with the German military brothels in World War II, it is estimated that at least 34,140 female inmates were forced into sexual slavery during the Third Reich.

Gothic rock

Gothic rock (alternately called goth-rock or goth) is a style of rock music that emerged from post-punk in the late 1970s. The first post-punk bands which shifted towards dark music with gothic overtones include Siouxsie and the Banshees, Joy Division, Bauhaus, and the Cure.The genre itself was defined as a separate movement from post-punk due to its darker music accompanied by introspective and romantic lyrics. Gothic rock then gave rise to a broader subculture that included clubs, fashion and publications in the 1980s.

Ian Curtis

Ian Kevin Curtis (15 July 1956 – 18 May 1980) was an English singer-songwriter and musician. He was the lead singer and lyricist of the post-punk band Joy Division and recorded two albums with the group: Unknown Pleasures (1979) and Closer (1980).

Curtis, who suffered from epilepsy and depression, took his own life on the eve of Joy Division's first North American tour and shortly before the release of Closer. His suicide resulted in the band's dissolution and the subsequent formation of New Order. Curtis was known for his bass-baritone voice, dance style, and songwriting typically filled with imagery of desolation, emptiness, and alienation.

Joy Division discography

The discography of English rock band Joy Division consists of two studio albums, four live albums, twelve compilation albums, three extended plays, and five singles. The list does not include material performed by former members of Joy Division that was recorded as New Order (formed by the surviving members of the band after the death of singer Ian Curtis) or related side projects.

Joy Division was formed in 1976 by guitarist Bernard Sumner and bassist Peter Hook, later recruiting singer Ian Curtis and drummer Stephen Morris. The band released its debut album, Unknown Pleasures, in 1979 on independent label Factory. On 18 May 1980, the eve of the band's first American tour, Curtis was found dead in his home. Unable to continue as Joy Division, the remaining members disbanded the group. The band's second album, Closer, was released two months later to critical acclaim. Since then, several posthumous releases have been issued from the band.

Love Will Tear Us Apart

"Love Will Tear Us Apart" is a song by English rock band Joy Division, released in June 1980. Its lyrics were inspired by lead singer Ian Curtis's marriage problems and frame of mind before his suicide in May 1980.

New Order (band)

New Order are an English rock band formed in 1980 by vocalist and guitarist Bernard Sumner, bassist Peter Hook, and drummer Stephen Morris. The band formed after the demise of Joy Division, following the suicide of lead singer Ian Curtis; they were joined by Gillian Gilbert on keyboards later that year. New Order's integration of post-punk with electronic and dance music made them one of the most acclaimed and influential bands of the 1980s. They were the flagship band for Manchester-based independent record label Factory Records and its nightclub The Haçienda, and worked in long-term collaboration with graphic designer Peter Saville.While the band's early years were shadowed by the legacy of Joy Division, their experience of the early 1980s New York club scene saw them increasingly incorporate dance rhythms and electronic instrumentation into their work. Their 1983 hit "Blue Monday" became the best-selling 12-inch single of all time and a popular club track. In the 1980s, they released successful albums such as Power, Corruption & Lies (1983), Technique (1989), and the singles compilation Substance (1987). They briefly disbanded in 1993 to work on individual projects before reuniting in 1998. In the years since, New Order has gone through various hiatuses and personnel changes, most prominently the departure of Hook in 2007. They released their tenth studio album Music Complete in 2015.

Peter Hook

Peter Hook (born Peter Woodhead; 13 February 1956) is an English singer, songwriter, composer, multi-instrumentalist and record producer. He is best known as the bassist and co-founder of English rock bands Joy Division and New Order.

Hook formed the band which was to become Joy Division with Bernard Sumner in 1976. Following the death of lead singer Ian Curtis in 1980, the band reformed as New Order, and Hook played bass with them until 2007.

Hook has recorded one album with Revenge (One True Passion), two albums with Monaco (Music for Pleasure and Monaco) and one album with Freebass (It's a Beautiful Life), serving as bassist, keyboardist and lead vocalist. He is currently the lead singer and bassist for Peter Hook and the Light.

Peter Hook and The Light

Peter Hook and The Light are an English rock band, formed in May 2010 by bass guitarist/vocalist Peter Hook, formerly of the influential post-punk bands Joy Division and New Order. The band also features Hook's son Jack Bates (bass), as well as Andy Poole (keyboards) and Paul Kehoe (drums), who both played with Hook as part of Monaco, one of Hook's previous groups. From the first gigs in May 2010, Nat Wason (formerly of Haven) was the group's guitarist, however in July 2013 he was replaced by David Potts, another former member of Monaco.The band is noted for performing the Joy Division and New Order albums live. Their setlists primarily feature the two Joy Division albums, Unknown Pleasures and Closer or the first two New Order albums, Movement and Power, Corruption & Lies, depending on the respective tour. The band gained some criticism from the other New Order members, Bernard Sumner and Stephen Morris (also of Joy Division) and Gillian Gilbert, after New Order's reunion without Hook.

The band is also occasionally accompanied by Rowetta, who performs guest vocals.The band's debut EP, 1102 | 2011 EP, was released on 9 May 2011. It features four Joy Division covers, one of which is a rework of "Pictures In My Mind" which was unreleased at that time.

Stephen Morris (musician)

Stephen Paul David Morris (born 28 October 1957) is an English multi-instrumentalist, composer and record producer who is best known for his work with the rock band New Order and, previously, Joy Division. He also wrote and performed in The Other Two, a band consisting of Morris and his wife, Gillian Gilbert. Morris also participated in the New Order spin-off band Bad Lieutenant. He is known for his precise drumming that seamlessly weaves with New Order's and Joy Division's drum machine sounds. Stylus Magazine ranked Morris No. 5 on their list of "50 Greatest Rock Drummers of All Time".

Still (Joy Division album)

Still is a compilation album by English rock band Joy Division, consisting of previously released and unreleased studio material and a live recording of Joy Division's last concert, performed at Birmingham University. It was released on 8 October 1981 by Factory Records, and was intended to both combat the trade in bootlegs and give fans access to recordings that were not widely available at the time.

Unknown Pleasures

Unknown Pleasures is the debut studio album by English rock band Joy Division, released on 15 June 1979 by Factory Records. The album was recorded and mixed over three successive weekends at Stockport's Strawberry Studios in April 1979, and was produced by Martin Hannett, who incorporated a number of unconventional production techniques into the group's sound. The cover artwork was designed by artist Peter Saville. It is the only Joy Division album released during lead singer Ian Curtis's lifetime.

Factory Records did not release any singles from Unknown Pleasures, and the album did not chart despite the relative success of the group's non-album debut single "Transmission". It has since received sustained critical acclaim as an influential post-punk album, and has been named as one of the best albums of all time by publications such as NME, AllMusic, Select, and Spin.

Joy Division
Studio albums
Extended plays
Compilation albums
Live albums

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