Helpless Dancer

The Endless Note

Peter Hook Sheds Light On Joy Division


Peter Hook has a new EP 1102 / 2011 coming on May 9 on his label Hacienda Records; it will feature the previously unrecorded Joy Division track Pictures In My Mind (sung by Hook) plus new versions of the Joy Division tracks Atmosphere, Insight and New Dawn Fades – sung by ex-Happy Mondays vocalist Rowetta.

So Hooky – Rowetta singing Atmosphere?
Peter Hook: “I don’t think I really have to justify that. The reason for it was that everybody who loves Rowetta has been asking us to record her. I was reluctant to do it, ‘cos all I’m doing is giving the miserable f**kers more ammunition to have a f**king go at me. The thing that swung me, is that I think Rowetta does give something different to the songs. Rowetta sings them so well, and brings a different feel and a different kind of melancholy, and I think if people want to hear it, let them hear it. I’m happy to do that for Rowetta because I f**king love her. She works so hard and she’s so nice about what she does – she’s so unlike the way that most people act in this business. I wouldn’t have the ego to record myself singing those songs.”

What about the new track, Pictures?
“Pictures is different, Pictures is a lost track, never finished. Someone brought it to my attention. The tape was stolen off Rob Gretton. So when I heard it I thought, we should just finish that. My son Jack insisted we do it. He said, ‘I thought you said that Ian Curtis said you should finish all your tracks?’ ‘Cos Ian always said, ‘finish them all, even if you don’t like it, because somebody will love it.'”

What’s it like revisiting Closer?
“I must admit that has been a bit of a shocker. We were playing it the other day, and my god, that felt weird. So much weirder than Unknown Pleasures. But the songs sound wonderful. I was blown away, listening to The Eternal, Heart and Soul, Decades… Jesus. I have grown men crying. I was almost f**king crying. Ha ha! Very, very moving.”

Will you tour it?
“It sounds quite trite, taking it out as a tour. I’m 55 right, my touring days are pretty much over, what happens is that I still love what I’m doing and if someone asks me to play somewhere, you consider it and you do it. I’m not selling anything, the LPs have been out for 30 years. And that’s a great compliment, to be asked. Especially as I’m not with the others. If it was all three of us, with Gillian singing or summat, I could see why they’d want it.”

Could that have happened?
“I was thinking about the other day, if I went to the band, as they were before we split up, and said, ‘Hey lads, how about us doing an Unknown Pleasures gig?’ I know for a fact that Bernard would just have laughed. You can’t make people do what you want them to do. There’s only one person you’ve got control over and that’s your bloody self.”

He will also be playing Joy Division‘s album Closer with his new band The Light on May 18 – the anniversary of Ian Curtis‘ death – and 19, at his club The Factory. These shows are presented in association with mental health charity Mind and The Keith Bennett Appeal, and will be recorded for vinyl-only release later in the year. The Light continue their tour of Joy Division‘s Unknown Pleasures in Britain, Europe and Ireland this month until June.

See for more info.

Original source :

April 28, 2011 Posted by | New News | , , | Leave a comment

Friday Fun – Toy Division

“Happy Days Toy Town” – The Small Faces

Life is just a bowl of All-Bran
You wake up every morning and it’s there
So live as only you can
It’s all about enjoy it ‘cos ever since you saw it
There aint no one can take it away.

So life is just a bowl of All-Bran – very true!
What you say has made it very clear
To be sure I’ll live as best as I can
But how can I remember to keep it all together
When half the moon is taken away?

Well, I’ve got the very thing
If you can laugh and sing
Give me those happy days toytown newspaper smiles
Clap twice, lean back, twist for a while
When you’re untogether and feeling out of tune
Sing this special song with me, don’t worry ’bout the moon
Looks after itself

[Steve:] Can I have a go?
[Ron:] Yes
[Steve:] Yeah?
[Ron:] Sing now:

Give me those happy days toytown newspaper smile
Clap twice, lean back, twist for a while
Well now you’ve got the hang of it
There’s nothing you can’t do with it
If you’re very tuned to it you can’t go wrong.

All together!

Give me those happy days toytown newspaper smile
Clap twice, lean back, twist for a while
Well now we’ve got the hang of it
There’s nothing we can’t do with it
And now we’re very into it we can’t go wrong!

[Stanley Unwin’s nonsense here]

Give me those happy days toytown newspaper smile
Clap twice, lean back, twist for a while
Well now we’ve got the hang of it
There’s nothing we can’t do with it
And now we’re very into it we can’t go wrong!

// //

To buy the music of The Small Faces click HERE

February 25, 2011 Posted by | Humour, Old Music, Video | , , | Leave a comment

Cover Story – Diane Birch

Having won my “Song of the Year” for 2010 Diane Birch caught me out with the sudden release,  of a seven track EP featuring all cover versions as a tribute to the music she loved growing up, music she heard via the older sisters of her friends, movies and other sources that were already nostalgic in the mid 90′s for the era that was the 80′s.

For this release Diane  has teamed with fellow New Yorkers and “astronauts of progressive soul” (Guardian UK) the Phenomenal Handclap Band to record ‘The Velveteen Age.’

 As such she has put her own seductive spin on songs by The Cure, Joy Division, Siouxsie & the Banshees, Echo & The Bunnymen, This Mortal Coil, The Sisters of Mercy and Peter Murphy.

 ‘The Velveteen Age’ was produced by S-Curve’s Steve Greenberg and Phenomenal Handclap Band’s Daniel Collás and Sean Marquand, and mixed by Steve Greenwell. Birch contributed arrangements with Collas and Marquand, and played all keyboards.

This Corrosion (Sisters of Mercy)

Kiss Them For Me (Siouxsie & The Banshees)
Bring On The Dancing Horses (Echo & The Bunnymen)
Atmosphere (Joy Division) Primary (The Cure)
Tarantula (This Mortal Coil)
A Strange Kind of Love (Peter Murphy)

Diane Birch with The Phenomenal Handclap Band
Produced by Steve Greenberg, Daniel Collás & Sean Marquand
Arranged by Diane Birch, Daniel Collás & Sean Marquand
Diane Birch – Vocals and Keyboards
Luke Riverside – Guitar
Pier Pappalardo – Bass
Patrick Wood – Drums
Quinn Luke & Patrick Wood – Backing vocals

“During my teenage years as a Goth these songs were amongst my nearest and dearest,” says Birch, who appears in one of her vintage Victorian wedding dresses at age 16 in the photo on the EP cover. “Sitting in my bedroom with my headphones pressed into my ears till they hurt, each song gave me a weird kind of hope for my future. I would have never imagined I would get a chance to record them one day, let alone with some of my closest friends.”

To buy the EP click HERE which I would recommend if only for her haunting take on Joy Division’s “Atmosphere”

January 1, 2011 Posted by | Cover Stories, New Releases, Video | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Joy Division

A new Joy Division box set is scheduled for release later this year it varies from the previously released “Heart And Soul” 4CD set in that this will be a collection of  7″ vinyl records.

The set, named ‘+-‘, will feature ten 7″ records, some of which have been released previously and some that have been created for this release.

The tracks have been remastered by Stephen Morris and Metropolis StudiosFrank Arkwright, while the box features new artwork from the band’s long-time visual collaborator Peter Saville.

‘+-‘, out on December 6, is limited to 5000 copies, with numbers one to 500 coming individually numbered and featuring a piece of art by Saville.

There will also be a digital release via iTunes, while anyone buying the physical edition will be able to download MP3s of the tracks free.

See for release details.

The tracklisting, picked by journalist Jon Savage, is:

A. ‘Warsaw’
B. Leaders Of Men

A: ‘No Love Lost’
B: ‘Failures’

A: ‘Digital’
B: ‘Glass’

A: ‘Autosuggestion’
B: ‘From Safety To Where’

A: ‘Transmission’
B: ‘Novelty’

A: ‘Atmosphere’
B: ‘Dead Souls’


A: ‘Komakino’
B1: ‘Incubation’
B2: ‘As You Said’

A: ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’
B: ‘These Days’

A: ‘Isolation’
B: ‘Heart And Soul’

The release date is however possibly under threat due to a lawsuit arising from the Peter Saville artwork for the packaging.

Washington DC based indie label Teenbeat Records have stepped forward to claim that the design for ‘+ -‘ is not entirely original. Pitchfork reports that the label have taken legal steps against the release of the box set.

Teenbeat has a band on their roster called + – and they contend that the new art work is too similar to the group’s own logo. Specifically, the imprint point to the cover of +/-‘s 2002 Teenbeat album ‘Self-Titled Long-Playing Debut Album’.

In a Facebook posting the label said: “American media company Teen-Beat and New York-based rock band +/- {Plus/Minus} have filed suit against Rhino Records U.K., Warner Music, and Peter Saville Associates in the High Court of Justice, London (U.K.) for trademark infringement and plagiarism.”

Make up your own mind by viewing the two designs below:-





Original sources :- and

A: ‘She’s Lost Control’ (12-inch Version)
B: ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart 2’ (Pennine Version)

November 13, 2010 Posted by | Art, New News, New Releases, Video | , , | Leave a comment


“Isolation” – Joy Division

In fear every day, every evening
He calls her aloud from above
Carefully watched for a reason
Painstaking devotion and love

Surrendered to self preservation
From others who care for themselves
A blindness that touches perfection
But hurts just like anything else

Isolation, Isolation, Isolation

Mother, I tried, please believe me
I’m doing the best that I can
I’m ashamed of the things I’ve been put through
I’m ashamed of the person I am

Isolation, Isolation, Isolation

But if you could just see the beauty
These things I could never describe
These pleasures a wayward distraction
This is my one broken prize

Isolation, Isolation, Isolation

Closer the second and final album Joy Division was released on July 18, 1980 two months following the suicide of lead singer Ian Curtis though album was originally scheduled to be released on May 8.

The record was originally released on the Factory Records label as a 12″ LP and reached #6 on the UK Albums Chart. It also peaked at #3 in New Zealand in September 1981. It claimed the number one slot on NME Album of the Year, and was included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

The album cover was designed by Martyn Atkins and Peter Saville, with photography from Bernard Pierre Wolff. The photograph on the cover is of the Appiani family tomb in the Cimitero Monumentale di Staglieno in Genoa, Italy, by Demetrio Paernio.

To buy the music of Joy Division click HERE

October 24, 2010 Posted by | Old Music | | Leave a comment

Cover Story – Love Will Tear Us Apart

This Joy Division song is one of my all time favourite songs, however, in 1983 Paul Young covered it on his debut album “No Parlez” surely one of the worst cover versions ever.

The guitarist in his band actually toured with THe Who in 1989 as a second guitarist, Townshend was playing acoustic only at the time to help protect his ears, and bassist Pino Palladino has played with The Who since the death of John Entwistle.

Here is the original and a couple of other cover versions.

April 9, 2009 Posted by | Cover Stories, Video | , , , , | Leave a comment


%d bloggers like this: