1 Jun 2004
The New Order single Confusion was the result of an extraordinary collaboration bringing together the opposing temperaments represented by New Order's methodical pursuit of excellence and Baker's poltergeist spirit. Though it began as an uneasy experiment, New Order rose to the challenge of working at speeds and in conditions unknown to them.

In this classic NME interview with New Order from 1983 the band explain how Confusion came about.

"It's the only time we ever sat down to write," recalls bassist Peter Hook with a shudder. "And God, was it hard! Arthur Baker just stood there staring at us, sort of going, 'go on, write something', and we were walking around in circles thinking, 'fucking hell, isn't it time to go home yet?' We don't normally work well under pressure."

"He'd start a drum machine off and send one of us in saying, 'have a go on that synthesiser'," expands guitarist Bernard Albrecht (née Dicken, now Sumner). "See what you can come up with. So you're standing there thinking 'what the fucking hell am I doing?' You'd do something and he'd go, 'that's alright', turn off the drum machine, start the tape rolling and say, 'right play it again'. And even though there'd be a minute's worth of mistakes in it, he'd just say, 'Fuck it. It's alright'.

"The one thing he doesn't like about English records, he told us, is they're too neat and clean. And I agree."

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A Certain Ratio

"Manchester, 1978. In the beginning there were four: Jez Kerr (bass), Martin Moscrop (guitar/trumpet), Peter Terrel (guitar/effects) and Simon Topping (vocals/trumpet). Four thin boys with a name borrowed from a Brian Eno record, the intense, drummerless quartet initially drew influence from Wire, Eno, the Velvets and Kraftwerk, and gained a manager in Anthony Wilson of Factory Records.

"May 1979 saw the release of their first ACR single, the dark All Night Party, although the sound and musicianship of the band would be transformed by the arrival of funky drummer Donald Johnson (DoJo) in August. Over the next few months the band gigged widely, often with Joy Division as part of Factory packages, and recorded demos with producer Martin Hannett as well as a Peel session. Their support slot with Talking Heads on their UK tour in December 1979 set David Byrne on a new course, and provided the compelling live half of their chic cassette package The Graveyard and the Ballroom. Post-punk, ACR now reflected the influence of Funkadelic, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, The Bar Kays and James Brown."

- intro to ACR Biography by James Nice (LTM)

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