November 18, 2007

Wayback Machine

We're going back to the days of Factory Records, the Haçienda, Madchester, and ultimately what were terrible fashion decisions.

Specifically, New Order. Electronic music has been getting a little more play in the northern parts of Stalin (being drunk, having a friend decide it would be a great idea to play Eiffel 65's Europop, then watching Samwell's magnum opus has something to do with it) and few did it as well for as long as New Order.

Most of New Order's singles weren't on their albums (for example, "Blue Monday" wasn't initially on Power, Corruption, and Lies) and it took until 2005 to get a more comprehensive singles collection. It came to us in the form of the appropriately named Singles.

You have to really step back and remove the cheese factor from the music to appreciate it. Their first single, "Ceremony" was still heavily shrouded in the cloud of Ian Curtis's suicide and sound like Joy Division with a more commercial vocalist (but thankfully without Bernard's lyrics). Yeah, a lot of the music sounds incredibly dated (FFS, "Shellshock" was on the Pretty in Pink soundtrack). And you can sometimes want to ignore everything after "Regret" because they start to sound a little too Eurotrash. That song is so damn catchy and it crossed-over so hard that I heard it at WAL-MART the other day (somewhere after hearing "Black Velvet" and before "Zoot Suit Riot").

So next time you feel like dropping E and taking a trip*, reach for some New Order.

* Slamdunk Stalin does not advocate the use of drugs. No, really. We're mostly law-abiding lameos.

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