While I appreciate the cultural significance1 of a band such as New Order, I was never much of a fan. Their music often sounded like it was made on a cheap Casio keyboard, or was the recorded drone from a tinnitus patient. There was never any incentive to investigate further, and this was reinforced by many years of suffering World In Motion – some say the high-point of English footballing music, but as I do not care for football then it just compounded my distaste for the whole subject.
A couple of years back I caught the video to Crystal, without knowing who the real band was (you need to see the video to understand why). I enjoyed the music a lot, and was surprised to then discover it was the latest New Order single. Who knew that an ageing group of Mancunians could make something that sounded so fresh, upbeat, yet dark and grimy. I purchased the album Get Ready shortly afterwards, and other than a few tracks (notably ‘Run Wild’), it was a good buy.
At the weekend I got my hands on the latest New Order album, Waiting For The Sirens’ Call, and was immediately struck by one thought: they sound exactly the same. This is not necessarily a bad thing, and most of the songs are very listenable. They have certainly retained their distinctive sound, but you could be forgiven for thinking all they’ve done is dissect Get Ready, and reassembled it into Sirens’ Call.
it is a New Order record, like so many New Order records before it, and countless New Order records to comeNME
Regardless of their cloning ability, it does make for a good album. Once you forget about all their baggage and loose any pretences of elitism you can simply enjoy the music. One day I’ll look into their back catalogue to see how consistent their style has been, but this will keep me going until then2.
1 Check out 24 hour party people for a tongue-in-cheek history
2 And not once did I mention Joy Division