Joy Division - Disorder

Joy Division - Disorder
A promotion package for the release of an album, to include a music promo video, together with two of the following options:

1. a cover for its release as part of a digipak (CD/DVD package);
2. a magazine advertisement for the digipak (CD/DVD package).

Video Resolution.

For the maximum viewing of all of the videos, please watch at the highest resolution available. Thank you

Director - Jonny Hughes (JH)
Cinematographer - Callum Moreman (CM)
Director of Photography/Cast Member - Joel Colborne (JC)

Monday, 13 December 2010

Joy Division - History, Genre & Music Videos

Joy Division were an English post-punk band formed in 1976 in Salford, Manchester. Though originally starting out as a punk band, they became one of the key bands of the post-punk movement. The band consisted of Ian Curtis (vocals), Bernard Sumner (Guitar and Keyboards), Stephen Morris (Drums) and Peter Hook (Bass Guitar).

Though they were only a band for four short years, they has a substantial impact on music. They had two full length albums: Unknown Pleasures (1979) and Closer (1980) both of which received critical acclaim. Today they are still cited as one of the best alternative British bands of all time, and bands ranging from the likes of U2 and The Cure, to more modern artists like The Killers have claimed to be influenced by Joy Division. Their biggest hit was the song "Love Will Tear Us Apart" which was released just one month before Curtis' suicide in May 1980. It reached number 13 in the UK charts. In 2002, NME magazine placed at number 1 in it's list of the Best Singles of All Time. Following Curtis' death the remaining members went on to form the hugely successful group New Order who split up in 2007.

(References: Wikipedia, The History of Rock Music: Joy Division, Joy Division Central )

20th July 1976 - The Sex Pistols played a gig at The Lesser Free Trade Hall in Manchester. Peter Hook, Bernard Sumner and their friend Terry Mason attended, and apparently this concert is what inspired them to form a band. Ian Curtis also attended with his wife Deborah.
21st July 1976 - Peter Hook buys his first bass guitar. Sumner already owned a guitar and Mason soon bought a set of drums. After failed attempts with singers from their area, they posted an advertisement in the local record shop.
Late 1976 - Ian replied to the advertisement, having already met the three before at past gigs. He too had tried to setup a band, but thus far his attempts had come to nothing. He was hired without audition.

1977 - Buzzcocks' manager Richard Boon (who Curtis now knew) suggests the band call themselves Stiff Kittens. The band did not like the name and it was only used to give them a name for their first concert.
May 29th 1977 - Just before their gig supporting Buzzcocks at Manchester's Electric Circus the band rename themselves Warsaw taking influence from a David Bowie song; "Warszawa". The band were mentioned in national magazines NME and Sounds, and gained mixed reviews. Mason was now their manager and Tony Tobac played drums.
June 1977 - Finding a decent drummer was clearly a problem for Joy Division. Tony Tobac left and was replaced by another drummer Steve Brotherdale. He also played in another band Panik, and tried to persuade Curtis to leave Warsaw to join Panik.
July 1977 - Warsaw record their first demo. It consisted of five songs and was recorded at Pennine Sound Studios in Oldham.
August 1977 - After firing Brotherdale, the band place an advertisement in a shop window in an attempt to recruit a new drummer. Stephen Morris, a former schoolmate of Ian Curtis replies and like Curtis is instantly a member of the band. This would be the lineup that stuck.
December 1977 - The group record four songs for their E.P "An Ideal For Living".

Early 1978 - They rename themselves Joy Division (which was allegedly the section of Nazi concentration camps where woman were kept for the soldier's pleasure). This instantly showed the bands dark nature. They renamed themselves to avoid confusion with London Punk band Warsaw Pakt.
January 25th 1978 - They play their first gig under the name Joy Division.
April 14th 1978 - The band play the Stiff/Chiswick Challenge concert at Manchester Rafters Club. Tony Wilson and Rob Gretton attend. Gretton is so impressed he convinces the band to let him be their new manager.
May 1978 - The band again enter the studio intending to record their debut album. They were unhappy with the resulting mix that followed and the album was never released. It can now be found with the title "The Warsaw Album".
June 1978 - The E.P An Ideal For Living is released. It features Nazi themed artwork and when combined with the band's name, they were often criticised and accused of Nazism. All of which the band denied.
Summer 1978 - The band now rehearsed at an abandoned warehouse. Their music was now taking on a much darker, moodier feel than their original punk roots.
September 20th 1978 - The band appear on Granada TV hosted by Tony Wilson after Curtis complained at not already being shown. The band were now making regular appearances at Wilson's club "The Factory".
Late September 1978 - Joy Division contribute two songs ("Digital" and  "Glass") to the complimation album "A Factory Sample". This was the first Factory Records album. The album sells out two months later.
December 27th 1978 - They play their first gig in London, at the "Hope and Anchor" Pub. Disappointed with their performance, things get worse when Ian suffers his first epileptic fit on the car journey home.

January 13th 1979 - Ian appears on the front cover on NME. Joy Division were beginning to get real exposure.
January 1979 - Recorded their first session for BBC's John Peel.
February 14th 1979 - Joy Division were played on national radio. They continued to build public exposure and were on the verge of success. This very positive time for the band was happening at the same time as Ian's struggles with his condition got worse.
March 4th 1979 - They supported The Cure at The Marquee in London. This show was much more successful then their previous London disaster.
April 1979 - They record their debut album Unknown Pleasures at Strawberry Studios, in Stockport. Martin Hannett produced the album, and is credited as been a main contributor to Joy Division's haunting tone. The artwork was created by Peter Saville, who had previously done poster designs for gigs at The Factory.
June 1979 - Unknown Pleasures is released through Factory Records. The album is seen as giving the label a serious credibility, and it's sells out of it's original 10,000 presses, which were funded by Tony Wilson's £8500 life savings. The album recieves mainly positive reviews.
July 1979 - Tony Wilson puts them on Granada TV again, this time playing "She's Lost Control". They also made their only nationwide appearance later that year on BBC2's Something Else. During this time they also record and release the single "Transmission" which whilst receiving very good reviews, did not achieve commercial success.
August 31st 1979 - They play their biggest ever show to 1200 people at London's Electric Ballroom.
October 1979 - They begin a 24 date tour with Buzzcocks. Many reviews favoured Joy Division over the headline act. During this time Ian Curtis attention was swayed to a young Belgain woman called Annik. His affair with her caused him lots of trouble both at home and mentally.
They also record Licht und Blindheit with Martin Hannett, which featured Atmosphere and Deal Souls.
November 26th 1979 - A second Peel Session is recorded featuring the song "Love Will Tear Us Apart". The lyrics to this song focus on Curtis' relationship with Annik and his wife Deborah, and the title is now on his gravestone.

January 1980 - The band tour Europe, featuring concerts in Holland, Germany and Belgium. Their reputation was growing and growing.
March 1980 - Licht und Blindheit is released minorly in France on small French indie label Sordide Sentimental. It had just 1578 copies.
Their second album Closer was recorded at Britannia Studios in London. Ian's depression was evident through the lyrics as was his broken relationships with Annik and Deborah. This was a difficult time for Ian, but the album was already beginning to recieve hype, and an American tour was booked.
April 7th 1980 - Ian failed in a suicide attempt. He overdosed on phenobarbitone and was admitted to hospital.
April 8th 1980 - Joy Division play a concert in Bury at the Derby Hall. The singer of fellow Factory band "A Certain Ratio" has to step in whilst Curtis struggles off stage. He then comes on stage before again leaving as a riot including band members, manager and the crowd breaks out.
Late April 1980 - After cancelling some concerts to allow Ian some time off, the band film a promotional video for single "Love Will Tear Us Apart". This was the only music video they filmed before Curtis' death.
May 2nd 1980 - They played what would be their last concet at Birmingham's High Hall.
May 18th 1980 - Just two days before the band were set to embark on their first tour of the US, Ian Curtis commits suicide. After visiting his wife to tell her to drop the divorce suit, he then told her to leave him alone and return to her parents' house. In his final moments he watched Werner Herzog film Stroszeck and listened to Iggy Pop. He then hung himself in the kitchen. Deborah Curtis found him the next day.

After Ian Curtis' Death 

June 1980 - The posthumous single "Love Will Tear Us Apart" is released. It gets to number 13 in the UK chart.
July 1980 - Closer is released to wide critical acclaim. The album gets to number 6 in the UK albums chart.
September 1980 - Factory Records release the Joy Division single "Atmosphere".
March 6th 1981 - The Joy Division song "Ceremony" is released under the remaining members new band name New Order. New Order's sound was a giant step away from Joy Division's gloomy moods. They went on to do exceedingly well commercial and critically.
October 8th 1981 - The complication album Still is released, which features rough recordings of previously unreleased Joy Division songs and a live recording of their last concert ever.
July 11th 1988 - Factory release Substance (another compilation album). They rerelease "Atmosphere" to promote the album along with a music video directed by Anton Corbijn.
June 1995 - Following Factory Records going out of buisiness, London Records buy the rights to Joy Division's backcatalogue. They release their own compilation album Permanent in 1995.
December 1997 - The boxset Heart and Soul is released. It includes nearly every Joy Division song ever recorded, and was met with generally positive reviews.
April 5th 2002 - The film 24 Hour Party People is released. It is directed by Michael Winterbottom and focuses on Factory Records. Though largely being about Tony Wilson, Joy Division are portrayed by actors and discussed.
2005 - Joy Division are inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame, along with New Order.
October 5th 2007 - The Anton Corbijn directed Ian Curtis biopic is released to positive reviews. The film is based upon Deborah Curtis' book Touching From A Distance.
March 24th 2008 - The Best of Joy Division CD is released. It features a bonus disc of The Complete BBC recordings.

Somewhat abandoning their roots in punk music, Joy Division took on a much more original darker toned sound. They were driven by Peter Hook's bass guitar melodies which often overshadowed Sumner's distorted guitar. They become pioneers of Post-Punk.

Sumner said of their sound "It came out naturally: I'm more rhythm and chords, and Hooky was melody. He used to play high lead bass because I liked my guitar to sound distorted, and the amplifier I had would only work when it was at full volume. When Hooky played low, he couldn't hear himself. Steve has his own style which is different to other drummers. To me, a drummer in the band is the clock, but Steve wouldn't be the clock, because he's passive: he would follow the rhythm of the band, which gave us our own edge."

The slowed down pace of songs, and the eerie edge that synthesisers provided sepereted them from other punk bands. On live performances the band often sped up the songs, playing them much more aggressively and angrier than the original recordings. This allowed the fans to feed back of this and create a powerful atmosphere at the concerts. They encouraged crowd reaction. 

Post punk was often very experimental and more complex. It led to gothic rock, industrial music and the indie scene. Similar style bands were Echo & The Bunnymen, early The Cure, The Sound and Bauhaus. The movement was helped by John Peel of the BBC. A lot of the bands were linked through Factory Records, and many bands played concerts together.

NME described Joy Division and other bands as "grey overcoat music" in tribute to Ian Curtis' iconic clothing.

Music Videos

Love Will Tear Us Apart [1980]

- The video was filmed by the band themselves with a very low budget. Due to this there were production errors such as the "browned out" effect, though this became part of the video's appeal.
- The band also refused to mime playing instruments and singing so the song was re-recorded. Again there were production errors, this time with Curtis' vocals.
 - Opens with a POV shot walking up stairs. Repreated shot a a door opening and closing. The bands initials are carved into the door.
- The rest of the video is just a performance of the song. Lots of close ups of each member but for the most part focuses on Ian.
- This video features a rare performance with Ian on guitar and Bernard on keys. That being said, you can see in the video that guitar is not a prominent feature of the song.
- There are quite a few instances where the lip synching is not accurate with the lyrics. You can tell that the band have done this low budget, and yet because of the bands sound it suits them perfectly. It has become iconic of the video.
- There's a particularly nice panning out shot at 2.53 which is  the only time we see the whole band in the frame.
- There is very often a use of cross-dissolve transitions between long shots and close ups. These help the video flow at a steady pace.
- The video ends with a hand again opening the door to reveal an empty room. The band have have played their song and now gone. It could signify how people play their part in life and then just go, leaving nothing behind.
- None of the band make eye contact with the camera at any point. They are all devoted to their performance and this is what they are all about. They play music, nothing more. They don't even play of each other or interact with each other, they are in the moment.

Atmosphere [1988]

- Directed by Anton Corbijn to promote the Substance compilation album. Clearly as Ian Curtis had passed away and the band members were now in New Order, now performance aspects are included.
- Use of still images, much as you would expect to see at a funeral. Corbijn did a lot of photogrpahy for Joy Division, and some of his neverbefore seen images are shown here. On the video, in his book "Money For Nothing" Saul Austerlitz says: "Corbijn's mystical side found a fitting client in the mournful posthumous video he shot for Joy Division's "Atmosphere" in 1988. In a landscape of dead trees and heavy shadows, the remaining members of the group watch as diminutive monks trudge through the desert, marching in packs while bearing their burdens through the still wilderness. the monks carry large-then-life photographs of Joy Division lead singer Ian Curtis (Who committed suicide in 1980). "Atmosphere" is a belated funeral procession, its medieval religious feeling a fitting tribute to the austerity and high moral purpose of post punk heroes Joy Division. Curtis is designated a monk of pain himself there, trudging through the desert of whos own aching psyche, and the relative disparity in size between Curtis and those who honor him is no accident; by "Atmosphere's" dint, Curtis was a giant among midgets."
- The video is shot in Corbijn's typical black and white with deliberate grain. The contrast of black and white is deepend by the black and white costumes of the monks.
- Each monk wears either a "+" or "-" on their top. "+-" became the name of Joy Division's 7" single boxset.
- The opening shot pans down a large object that the monks are gathered round. This show is intercut with panning down shots of the monks. The shape of their costume reflects that of the shrine. This could be signifying how Curtis is now imitated and remembered by all his fans.
- The video is paced very slowly, with often very little movement in the shots. It has a sense of mourning about it. At the beginning each shot is cut in time to the beat of the song.
- He makes use of silhouettes such as 2.15. They give the video for a dark, mysterious feel to it.
- For the most part the video is very ambigious and open to interpretation. All we know is that Corbijn is paying tribute to the late Ian Curtis.
- The video is amost as if Corbijn is himself remembering all his memories of working with the band, and in this video putting them all together in a shrine to Ian Curtis.
- Like many of his videos, Corbijn makes use of desolate landscapes, creating a feeling of isolation and emptiness.The mood is very reflective, as is the song.
- There are lots of empty frames with the monks themselves very small in the shot. They are all unified by the band. The band that they look up to as it towers over them.

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