Fulcrum Centre, Slough
7 December 1985
source: Hooky's rubbish bin (the "stash" tapes)
1st generation dub of cassette master
analogloyalist mastering August 2012
At long last I'm starting to fix up and free a stash of gigs - which first saw the light (heh) in 2004 on the long-defunct Sharing The Groove, but were essentially untouched beyond basic cleanup - that really show how brilliant New Order were in their prime in the mid-'80s.
The quick-and-dirty background: Whilst cleaning house, a set of New Order tapes (various mid-80s live gigs, some rehearsals, and a DAT or two from the band's 1989 US tour) was found by Hooky under the floorboards at his studio Suite 16 in Rochdale, England. A musician friend of Hooky, who was in his employ for a duration in the early 90s, then rescued the tapes and sold them to an infamous collector in Florida, who is known for not sharing the wealth. In the interim, ATR (sometimes called Stash) obtained 1st-generation dubs of these tapes before they were shipped off to Florida. ATR then shared them amongst the New Order cognoscenti, and then in 2004 we fed them to the world via Sharing The Groove.
All these gigs had their various problems as-received from the source in between Hooky and us, the least of which were sector boundary errors (which means, if burned as-is to CD, there are audible "pops" in between tracks) and all off-pitch by varying degrees. Some were extremely muddy, and others were far too bright. None of them were just right, but my aim is to make them so.
(The New Order "stash" gigs that were on Sharing The Groove, and various other torrent sites and blogs from 2004 onward, are all from those original 2004 releases and have not been formally mastered since, until now.)
With this set, we see the band in fine form in metropolitan London. Two notables about this gig:
1) "This Time Of Night" from this gig was shortlisted for the live CD in the Retro box set, and this version (unmastered, presumably) appeared on very early track sheets (and working CD-Rs during compilation). Bobby Gillespie loved it but Bernard had it binned for another track instead (I forget which).
2) "She's Lost Control" is debuted by New Order. This period of New Order gigging is weird; it's obvious they were in a bit of a state because they played a handful of Joy Division tracks here in December 1985 to the extent they'd never done before, and wouldn't do so again until 1998. They unearthed "She's Lost Control", "Atmosphere", and "Love Will Tear Us Apart" during this period.
The original unmastered version has been spread pretty far and wide since 2004. Trust me when I say you will want to bin it immediately upon hearing this 2012 mastering - it crushes it like a grape. This set here is easily a candidate for official release (barring the fades/cuts on the original cassette board master), should the band re-activate their once-planned-subsequently-binned live album project.
01 State Of The Nation (fades in)
02 Blue Monday
03 The Village
04 This Time Of Night
06 Thieves Like Us
09 Ceremony (cuts in)
11 She's Lost Control
12 The Perfect Kiss
First of a series...