Tonight I saw ’80s post-punk/new wave English band New Order, another throwback to my latter high school years. In the day, “Bizarre Love Triangle” and “Blue Monday” made me feel cool, edgy and excited about my future. My opinion at the time was that New Order was perhaps the most sophisticated and intellectual band of their time. At the same time, I was completely naive. I knew little about the London punk scene they came from, their Joy Division roots or the suicide of Joy Division front man Ian Curtis which triggered the genesis of New Order in 1980. Today, I have great respect for their story, their journey and their incredible music. It all made a significant impression in my life.
“Regret” was one of the first songs they performed and one of my favorites from their early ’90s album Republic, followed by “Ceremony,” which was originally intended to be a Joy Division song before Ian’s death. It became New Order’s first single in 1981. The concert hit its stride as the sun fully set and the classics emerged from a stage filled with smoke and lasers. “Bizarre Love Triangle” and “True Faith” got it all started and reminded me how much I loved their Substance 1987 compilation album. “Blue Monday,” “The Perfect Kiss” and “Temptation” closed their main set. I was surprised they didn’t play anything off their new album, Lost Sirens. They encored with three Joy Division songs including “Ceremony” and “Love Will Tear Us Apart.” I left feeling great — another bucket list concert off the list and a greater appreciation for their work. That’s what it’s all about.
Here are 13 essential New Order songs in order of their release: