The members of Joy Division had agreed that the band would not perform under that name should any one of them leave. So, when their singer Ian Curtis took his own life in 1980, the dark post-punk group morphed into New Order. The band soon evolved more of a dance-rock sound, closer to new wave than the melancholia of its previous life, without ever quite shaking off that sense of impending doom.
The New Order name lives on today. They had a five-year hiatus between 1993 and 1998 and changed their keyboard player in 2001. They split up in 2007, re-formed with a new bass player in 2009, and have been active ever since. Here’s a rather splendid example of their work from the 2015 album, Music Complete.
The Crotchety Arts Appreciation Panel feel this song is just what pop music should be. It has a distinctively ambiguous instrumental introduction, a first lyric line that promises to tell a story and a melody hook guaranteed to have us all singing along whether we’re stone-cold sober in the car or well-stoned in a festival stadium. And, of course, it speaks of the eternal themes of love and loss that haunt us all long after our teenage years. It touches anyone with a heart.