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Monday 20 November 1978 concert review

Magazine: Record Mirror (UK)

Publication date: Saturday 25 November 1978

Reviewer: Mike Nicholls


 

JOY DIVISION: ALTRINCHAM CHECK INN CLUB

A NEW gig in town and right on me own doorstep! And not only that, but promotions are taking place courtesy of mankind's first punk chiropodist
It was unfortunate, then, that for openers we had to be subjected to disposable local group The Bidet Boys, a drummerless trio with a drummer, and the slightly better Surgical Supports, who apparently go down a storm on the grammar school circuit
Still, Joy Division were OK and could well prove to be to next year what
The Fall have been to Manchester this year and what Buzzcocks were to last year, etc., etc.
Over the last 12 months they have dropped their (denied) affinity to Nazism and are instead concentrating on producing some tight dynamic music with above
average lyrics
Fronting the band is the pallid, hyperactive
Ian Curtis, whose weird, wired mechanic dance routines are reminiscent of Lou Reed circa '74. The Velvets connection is maybe a little superficial, but certainly the downer rhythms of Peter Hook (bass) and Stephen Morris (drums) are very like Sister ray which as it happens, is also the band's encore
Nevertheless the overall sound is well grounded in the late seventies, mainly due to the Banshee-esque metallic chord
chopping of guitarist Bernard Dickin [= Bernard Sumner], who interestingly has dropped his erstwhile stage monicker 'Albrecht'. The Teutonic influence extends to the subject matter of most of their songs including Leaders of men, the only number I recognised from their home–made An Ideal For Living EP. None of the titles were introduced and indeed there was no stage-talk whatsoever, which obviously suits their austere and abrasive image. Altogether, a band to definitely watch out for. If you caught them on The Rezillos tour you'll know what I mean