# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

New Order and Liam Gillick - ∑(No,12k,Lg,17Mif): So It Goes

  by Richard Lewis

published: 21 / 9 / 2019

New Order and Liam Gillick - ∑(No,12k,Lg,17Mif): So It Goes
Label: Mute
Format: CD X2


Groundbreaking indie/electronica outfit New Order team up with revered conceptual artist Liam Gillick for a frequently dazzling live set recorded during the band’s five night residency at Manchester International Festival 2017

Staged during the Manchester International Festival 2017, indie/electro rock titans New Order brought a fresh twist to revisiting their glittering back catalogue. For a band whose ground-breaking sleeve designs and music videos always indicated a strong sense of the visual, the group’s collaboration with conceptual artist Liam Gillick makes perfect sense. The project saw the band’s work performed in harness with a dozen-strong synth ensemble from Manchester based institution the Royal Northern College of Music. Performed with the band on stage and the additional players seated in Gillick’s purpose built installation behind them, the staging creates the effect of New Order being accompanied by a cross between Kraftwerk and a score of office workers. Orchestrated and arranged by fellow Mancunian Joe Duddell, the material underlines how timeless New Order’s material is, the meeting of classical, electronica and underground rock working in lock step to frequently daazling results. Unusually for a live LP (with the same applying for DVDs as well), the entire disc is drawn from one night’s performance, not stitched together from several. The honesty in presenting the set verbatim also extends to performances, with the human frailty of Bernard Sumner’s vocals amidst the precision tooled synth pop one of the group’s hallmark assets. With a large canvas required to stage the event, an additional emotional element is added with the residency taking place at the Old Granada TV Studios. Scene of their TV debut as Joy Division, the band’s mentor and Factory Records label boss, the much-missed Tony Wilson worked for the broadcaster. The new arrangements draw out the electronic threads of each track without swamping the originals. For a group who perfectly straddled what were once the polar opposite worlds of rock and dance music 'So It Goe', like 2015's well-received ‘Music Complete’, continues the band’s rediscovery of electronica. At times the material strongly evokes the Pet Shop Boys, a natural fit given Sumner’s collaboration alongside Neil Tennant in Electronic in the early 1990s. Eschewing the big hits, the set cleaves towards deep cuts and fan favourites with many of the tracks returning to the set following long abscences or in several cases making their live debut. Starting slowly with instrumental cut ‘Times Change’ and ‘Who’s Joe’ taken from 2005's flimsy ‘Waiting For the Siren’s Call’ their last (to date, at least) album with founder member and bassist Peter Hook, the opening cuts are pleasant if slightly inconsequential. Making its return to the stage almost forty years later, ‘Disorder’, the opening cut from Joy Division’s seminal debut ‘Unknown Pleasures’ is greeted with whoops of recognition. A percussive take on ‘Ultraviolence’ best heard on headphones is impressively arranged while early B-side ‘In A Lonely Place’ is one of their best post-punk era tracks. ‘Dream Attack’ is superb minor chord guitar pop while ‘All Day Long’ is a wonderfully resigned shrug of a song. Elsewhere ‘Shellshock’, never one of the band’s strongest singles, aired for the first time since 1987 benefits from the synth-led overhaul. The final stretch of the set is a masterstroke building towards the summit. Given an arrangement that makes its synth melody sound like gothic chamber music, the reappearance of 1985 classic ‘Sub-Culture’ has lead to the track becoming a stalwart of their shows ever since. One of the greatest pop songs ever written ‘Bizarre Love Triangle’ is buffed and sheened to perfection, segueing beautifully into a dramatic version of ‘Vanishing Point’. A barnstorming rendition of their finest track in recent years, the excellent Giorgio Moroder-esque ‘Plastic’ concludes the main set on a high. Providing a downbeat farewell, the second disc includes the encore cuts, melancholy live favourite ‘Your Silent Face’ and Joy Division standard ‘Decades’. Bonus tracks drawn from other nights of the residency meanwhile feature Ian Curtis requiem ‘Elegia’ and the despondent B-side ‘Behind Closed Doors’. An excellent if slightly superfluous stopgap release to flag up their current tour, ‘So It Goes’ and their brilliant live form at present provide ample proof New Order have more than enough inspiration left to sustain them into their fifth decade.

Track Listing:-
1 Times Change (Live at MIF)
2 Who’s Joe (Live at MIF)
3 Dream Attack (Live at MIF)
4 Disorder (Live at MIF)
5 Ultraviolence (Live at MIF)
6 In A Lonely Place (Live at MIF)
7 All Day Long (Live at MIF)
8 Shellshock (Live at MIF)
9 Guilt Is A Useless Emotion (Live at MIF)
10 Subculture (Live at MIF)
11 Bizarre Love Triangle (Live at MIF)
12 Vanishing Point (Live at MIF)
13 Plastic (Live at MIF)
14 Your Silent Face (Live at MIF)
15 Decades (Live at MIF)
16 Elegia (Live at MIF)
17 Heart & Soul (Live at MIF)
18 Behind Closed Doors (Live at MIF)
19 07.06 – Norway – Aarhus – Northside Festival
20 13.06 – Norway – Oslo – PiPfest
21 16.06 – Greece – Athens – Release Festival
22 30.06 – Belgium – Werchter – Rock Werchter Festival
23 07.07 – Ireland – Dublin – Trinity Summer Sessions
24 12.07 – Italy – Lucca – Summer Festival
25 18.07 – England – Bristol – Harbourside Festival
26 21.07 – England – Cheshire – Bluedot Festival
27 24.07 – Sweden – Rattvik – Dalhalla Festival
28 27.07 – Spain – Benidorm – Low Festival
29 12.08 – Spain – Girona – Cap Roig Festival
30 15.08 – Portugal – Praia do Taboão – Parades de Coura Festiv
31 18.08 – Netherlands – Biddinghuizen – Lowlands Festival
32 25.08 – England – Portsmouth – Victorious Festival
33 21.09 – Spain – Madrid – Weekend City Festival
34 03.10 – Czech Republic – Prague – Lucerna Music Hall
35 05.10 – Germany – Munich – Philharmonic Hall
36 07.10 – Germany – Berlin – Tempodrom
37 11.10 – France – Paris – Le Grand Rex
38 14.10 – Belgium – Brussels – Forest National
39 17.10 – Netherlands – Amsterdam – AFAS Live

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