Like many other Chinese Americans of my generation, New Order was an integral part of the soundtrack to much of my junior high and high school days. With cassette tapes (YES!) of Substance, Technique and Low Life riding around in my Honda Accord, the post punk electronic sounds of the Manchester Club scene blended in with the suburban Los Angeles landscape.
I’m a little bit younger than people who would’ve listened to Joy Division – so I wasn’t as familiar with the Joy Division catalog, until I got older. At my first job in Hong Kong one of my co-workers would wear a tie every May 18th to memorialize Ian Curtis’ suicide. So I soon picked up some Joy Division knowledge as well, but it wasn’t quite the same as New Order to me – I realize I’m in a distinct minority in this.
Anyways, with the current state of New Order and original Joy Division/New Order Bassist Peter Hook at each other’s throats with lawsuits and bad feelings, Peter Hook is now touring with his own band – Peter Hook and the Light. Last night they played a tribute to Joy Division at Mao Livehouse – playing the entirety of two albums, Closer and Unknown Pleasures. It was fantastic – I hadn’t been to a live concert since Metallica last year but this live raw show made up for lost time. Hook’s low baritone actually matches Curtis’ so many of the songs felt like the old Joy Division songs.
Love Will Tear Us Apart