New Order was an indelible part of most queer kids’ lives who grew up in the 80s and 90s. Its music was such a part of the DNA of life in the 1980s that it’s hard to think of either existing without the other.
Hit songs like Bizarre Love Triangle suggested a different kind of love then the heteronormative one we knew.
New Order’s music was quick moving beats, layered with ballads distorted via electronic synthesizers–electronically amplifying their already haunting voices. In fact it was New Order’s innovative integration of post-punk with electronic and dance music that made them one of the most acclaimed and influential bands and producers.
Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Stephen Morris formed New Order after the 1980 suicide death of Joy Division lead singer Ian Curtis.
According to NPR, “The first of those [New Order]singles, ‘Ceremony,’ was actually written with Curtis prior to his suicide. It popped up as a single in advance of New Order’s 1981 debut album, Movement, which is about to receive the deluxe-reissue treatment; to commemorate the occasion, the band is circulating a little-seen performance of ‘Ceremony,’ recorded live at Manchester’s CoManCHE Student Union.”
Recorded on Feb. 6, 1981, the performance was based on Curtis’ own– having previously written, performed and demoed as Joy Division before his death.
“It’s a marvelous document of New Order’s early years — steeped in tragedy but alive with possibility” said NPR.
Watch it below.
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