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New Order

New Order

Fact Sheet

Country  England, UK
Years active1980-
New Order are an English indie rock band that formed in 1980 from Joy Division following the suicide of lead singer Ian Curtis. The members of New Order are Bernard Sumner (lead vocalist), Peter Hook (bassist), and Stephen Morris (percussion), all from Joy Division, plus Gillian Gilbert (guitar/synth). Hook was married to comedy actress Caroline Aherne for a short time; Gilbert and Morris are a married couple.

New Order initially started on a similar route as their previous incarnation, performing melodic, dark songs. Soon however, they found their own sound and became a well known icon in new wave and alternative circuits, exhibiting a good deal of longevity. They have heavily influenced techno, and were themselves influenced by the likes of Donna Summer and Kraftwerk.

New Order and Joy Division were both among the most successful artists on the Factory Records label, run by Granada television personality Anthony Wilson, and partnered with Factory in the financing of the Manchester club The Hacienda.

Each member of this band has been involved with other bands: Sumner partnered with former member of The Smiths, Johnny Marr, in Electronic; Hook formed the bands Revenge and Monaco; and Morris and Gilbert formed the aptly named The Other Two.

Their music has tended to be heavily synth-based, like other new wave bands', and among their better known hits are "True Faith" (1987), and "Bizarre Love Triangle" (1986). Their 12"-only release "Blue Monday" is the best selling 12" single of all time, though because the packaging was so elaborate--resembling a large 5" floppy disk--the band were said to lose a small amount of money on each copy sold.

New Order recorded the official song for English football team's 1990 World Cup bid, "World in Motion," under the ad-hoc band name EnglandNewOrder. The song, co-written with comedian Keith Allen, was a number one UK hit.

In recent years New Order have become more comfortable with the Joy Division era of their repertoire, often performing live versions of JD classics such as "Transmission" and "Isolation." Joy Division and New Order were portrayed in the film 24 Hour Party People, which depicts Factory and its bands during their heyday.

Their 2001 release Get Ready is a departure from their older style as it is not heavily synth-dependent, but the bass-playing and Bernard's vocals make it still sound distinctively like New Order.