Joy Division


Joy Division rose from the ashes of the punk revolution in the late 1970s and early 1980s, taking a tradition of ferocious exhibitionism and turning it on its head to come up with some of the darkest, most brooding and introspective pop music ever created. Joy Division’s songs were never mopey—they were sometimes angry, especially in the band’s earlier, punkier days, and often sad. But what underlay Ian Curtis’ dystopic lyrics and the minimalist groove laid down by the band seemed to be more like existential horror than simple outrage. Songs like “Love Will Tear Us Apart” and “She’s Lost Control” remain minor masterpieces of post-punk rock and a clear precursor of the emo subgenre that would emerge 15 years later. This four-disc box set contains most of the recordings Joy Division made and will be earnestly sought out by fans. Newcomers may want to start with Substance, a best-of collection.