New Order
Movement Factory http://www.tinymixtapes.comsites/default/files/arton1225_0.jpg

[Factory; 1981]

Rating: 5/5 5 / 5 (0)

Styles: post-punk, synth-pop
Others: Cure, PIL, Depeche Mode, Echo and the Bunnymen


http://media.tinymixtapes.com/

Once, when I was younger and found myself heartbroken, a friend of mine said, "I've got just the thing for you," and he handed me a cassette. It had two records dubbed on it. Side one was Closer by Joy Division and the other side was Movement, New Order's debut. I knew of New Order as a dance band, but what I heard on that tape was anything but, as it plodded a melancholy territory that made The Smiths (then my current fascination) look positively joyous—and, of course, being angst-ridden, I loved every minute of it.Once, when I was younger and found myself heartbroken, a friend of mine said, "I've got just the thing for you," and he handed me a cassette. It had two records dubbed on it. Side one was Closer by Joy Division and the other side was Movement, New Order's debut. I knew of New Order as a dance band, but what I heard on that tape was anything but, as it plodded a melancholy territory that made The Smiths (then my current fascination) look positively joyous””and, of course, being angst-ridden, I loved every minute of it.

I once read that after the sudden, selfish suicide of Ian Curtis, there was some discussion about continuing on as Joy Division, and the band even played a handful of shows as Joy Division. Still, it wouldn't have been surprising had they continued on using that name, as Movement sounds just like Joy Division. Bernard Sumner's vocals at times sound like the specter of Curtis; other times, they sound like a piss-poor imitation of their deceased colleague. You really can't find any songs as bleak as "Truth" or "Doubts Even Here," both as dour, detached and funereal as anything off of Closer or Unknown Pleasures.

So, for the fourteen year old me, dressed all in black and wishing it was 1981 instead of 1987, Movement made my miserable soul quite happy””in that inexplicable, schadenfreude kind of way. I rediscovered this record several years later when it was finally reissued on CD, and it also soundtracked my miserable college years as well. But then some bad things happened this past week and I realized I needed to hear it. Having lost this record somewhere along the way””and being heartbroken and in need of a blast of pure negativity””I bought it again, and discovered something I hadn't noticed before. Within the realms of Martin Hannett's dark production were glimpses of optimism; the loss of Curtis was there, of course, but there were signs of hope. True, when you listen to "Dreams Never End" and "Chosen Time," you'll hear the furtive beginnings of what was to come next: "Temptation" and a decade's worth of intelligent pop music. And yeah, underneath all the atmosphere were such hopeful lines as "All the times it takes to complain/But live in doubt/Sometimes they keep you waiting for a look around/I've got a friend in here somewhere who can help me out" (from "Chosen Time") and "Small boy kneels, wandering in a great hall/He pays penance to the air above him/White circles, black lines surround me/Reborn, so plain my eyes see/This is the reason that I came here/To be so near to such a person" (from "The Him").

In a way, Movement is as much about the hope of the future as it is about the pain and the hell of the present””and I guess that's why it's always been a record that's made me feel better in my times of misery. I've yet to hear a record that comes close to Movement's bleakness and utter despair…and I really wouldn't want it any other way.

1. Dreams Never End
2. Truth
3. Senses
4. Chosen Time
5. I.C.B.
6. The Him
7. Doubts Even Here
8. Denial