Sunday, March 7, 2010

1979: Disorder

Joy Division: Disorder


Bernard Sumner and Peter Hook famously saw an early Sex Pistols show in 1976, then borrowed money the following day with the intention to start their own band. Ian Curtis soon joined as lead vocalist, and what would soon be called Joy Division was born.

I've never heard any pre-Unknown Pleasures live performances by Joy Division, but apparently they were an aggressive punk band before they started recording in the studio. Neither of their studio LP's are punk albums, though. Instead, they are more expansive, more atmospheric, and more reminiscent of the post-punk sound that would fully develop in the coming years with bands like The Cure and Echo & The Bunnymen.

Tragically, Ian Curtis was a depressed and broken man. He suffered from often uncontrollable epilepsy. His relationship with his wife was disintegrating. He had expressed to his band mates and others that he wanted to die. Then on May 18, 1980 he killed himself in his own home. His band mates expressed regret that they didn't take his cues and cries for help more seriously.

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