27 Mar 2008
Breaking the Rules - the Printed Face of the European Avant Garde 1900-1937 
Breaking The Rules, An excellent exhibition about avant garde typography in the early 20th Century at the British Library is coming to close but if you nip along this weekend you'll be able to catch it. This is quite a large show, with artists' books, manifestos, magazines etc, and the European element of the title is a key feature. There are sections on avant garde artistic activity in a very wide range of European cities.

There are a couple of Factory Records references:

- a copy of the FACT 50 Movement sleeve is included in the "legacy" section (along with the Greil Marcus 'Lipstick Traces' LP, a Franz Ferdinand sleeve and a Sex Pistols / Seditionaries T-shirt). There's a nice quote from Peter Saville, and it's placed knowingly next to Tschichold's Die Neue Typographie in the case.

- the Futurist design which inspired the sleeve for FAC 128 Wild Party by ACR (the direct appropriation here might surprise some people)

Breaking the Rules - the Printed Face of the European Avant Garde 1900-1937 runs until Sunday 30 March 2008. Admission is free.

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25 Mar 2008
Win official new FAC 51 The Haçienda T-Shirts 
For the first time, official T-Shirts to celebrate FAC 51 The Haçienda are now available to buy. These are high quality and limited edition and available in four designs.

To win a complete set of all four designs in the size of your choice, just answer this question:

"What were the four ingredients of a 'Zero Hour' cocktail, as served in the Gay Traitor Bar?"

Answers by email to Cerysmatic. Closing date is Friday 4 April and the lucky winner will be drawn from the hat.

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24 Mar 2008
Salford seeks help to put music on the map! 
Salford City Council is putting a shout out for local people's memories of music in and around Salford from 1950 to today - from rockabilly to poptastic bands, from folk to the phil, gig memorabilia to rare recordings.

The information collected will go towards two exciting new projects: a music map, showing the wide range of musical heritage across the whole of the city and an exhibition at Salford Museum and Art Gallery opening later in the year.

Both will form part of a wider on-going musical heritage project celebrating the variety and scope of Salford's musical landscape.

The music map aims to cover all types of music across the ages from The Smiths to the Ting Tings, Ewan McColl to New Order and will highlight musical 'hotspots' in the city, such as venues, birthplaces, concert halls and iconic locations.

Local music expert and author David Nolan (Bernard Sumner: Confusion, I Swear I Was There) has been commissioned to lead on the research for the music map, but local residents' memories are vital too in building up a picture of the sounds of Salford. Memories are sought from across the city - from Irlam to Broughton, Worsley to Ordsall. A MySpace page has been set up for people to add to the debate and discuss their favourite Salford bands, venues and gigs.

The map will be published in September and handed out for free at some of the forthcoming music events taking place this year, such as the Proms in the Park at Buile Hill Park and the next day's planned pop extravaganza. (A full list of events planned for 2008 can be found at www.visitsalford.info.)

The Salford Museum and Art Gallery exhibition will be called Quiffs, Riffs and Tiffs and will open in October. The exhibition team are also on the lookout for merchandise, memorabilia and memories to form part of the displays. They are especially looking for:

- musical instruments
- records
- clothing
- tickets and programmes
- posters
- photographs
- films

The music map will be available for free at the exhibition, and there will be a chance for visitors to have their say on the final choices on hotspots on the map. It is hoped that as part of the on-going musical heritage campaign further debate will be encouraged on www.visitsalford.info, when visitors will be asked for their opinions in polls, forums and online surveys.

Said Cllr Barry Warner, Salford City Council's lead member for culture and sport said: "History and heritage don't have to be confined to books and archives; projects such as this show it is very much alive.

"Salford has a strong tradition of pushing the boundaries of music and a number of bands people think are Manchester-based are actually from Salford.

"It will be fascinating to see what memories and memorabilia we collect."

To send in memories for the music map please email salfordmusicmap@googlemail.com or send them via the website at www.myspace.com/salfordmusicmap.

If you have memorabilia to donate to the exhibition, please contact Heather or Amy on 0161 778 0885 or email: lifetimes@salford.gov.uk.

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21 Mar 2008
Twice As Nice 
Today we're celebrating two milestones here at the Cerysmatic complex.

First off, it's the 10th anniversary of Cerysmatic Factory itself. Yes, TEN years of the wild and wonderful thing that is and continues to be Cerysmatic.

And just as important, it is Cerysmatic's own master of ceremonies John Cooper's birthday.

Those in the area might want to head over to South in MCR tonight (check the JCFX link at right) and join the festivities. Make sure to say hello & congrats to John and Moist.
A Chrysler Building's worth of pop-orchestral magnificence 
Chip Kidd's Living With Music: A Playlist as told to the New York Times's Dwight Garner includes The Perfect Kiss by New Order.

He describes it thus: "For me, otherwise known as The Perfect Song. To the uninitiated, on first listen it probably just sounds like bad disco, in the way that Gilbert and Sullivan's "A Modern Major General" might sound like merely clever recitative. But with something like six or seven listens, the layers peel back and an astoundingly complex aural architecture is erected before one's very ears, and then - there before you is a sky-scraper of sound, the likes of a Chrysler Building's worth of pop-orchestral magnificence. Which then just collapses, to your profound dismay. So you hit "Play" again, and for four more minutes it builds again, and you are happy."

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Pared down 
Chris Mugan in The Indepedent muses on "The no-hit wonders that music refused to forget" and mentions ESG ("They developed their own pared-down sound that somehow chimed with more arty concerns..."), The Raincoats ("mixing sonic eccentricity with put-downs of consumerism and patriarchal society.") and namechecks Ludus. A rather unfortunate typo turns Martin Hannett in Martin Hamnett though.

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Réification: making the abstract concrete 
Reification *
Midday. Midsummer. Manchester.

Peter Saville, Liam Spencer, Steve Coogan, Ben Kelly, Peter Hook, and Mark Radcliffe have all pledged their support to Reification - the Tony Wilson Experience, this summer.

The six creatives - representing design, art, acting, architecture, music and broadcasting - are the first in what will be an eclectic mix of creative talents to agree to take part in the event being held in Manchester in memory of broadcaster, entrepreneur, and creative champion, Anthony H Wilson.

Billed as Manchester's longest intelligent conversation the event launches at 12 noon on Saturday 21 June 2008 when some of the biggest names in design, the creative industries, media and the arts will begin a 24 hour conversation and debate, before a selected audience of up to two hundred talented and creative young people from across the city and beyond.

The 'talent' attending the event will be selected for the potential they show across a broad spectrum of the creative arts.

Full details of how individuals can apply to be a part of the event will be announced in April and will be based on them making a creative submission which will be judged against other entries.

In the meantime anyone interested is invited to register their interest via the event website www.tonywilsonexperience.com in order to receive updates on the event and an alert when submissions open.

Peter Saville, design guru and Creative Director for Manchester who co-founded Factory Records with his long-standing friend and colleague Tony Wilson, said: "There was always a bigger picture in play with Tony.

"If there was a chance to foster new talent he'd take it. If he could fuse different disciplines together into something brave and new and unexpected, he'd make it happen. He was at all times crucible, catalyst and collector.

"Great things are going to come out of this weekend - both for the students and for the experienced creatives themselves. Everyone there is going to be able to learn from and to share ideas with the rest of the participants."

Peter Saville also talked to Andy Crane about the Tony Wilson Experience on Channel M News yesterday.

Artist Liam Spencer said: "Although Tony and I didn't know each other well, we did meet up a few times - and of course studying in Manchester in the eighties as I did, you couldn't help but know about Tony and Factory Records - the music and the design that went with it.

"The most impressive thing to me about all of this was that it was all on my doorstep - that people from this city were going out and doing these wonderful things in the world. Manchester really did begin to blossom creatively during this time and it was good to feel that I could be a part of this.

"Painting is just what I discovered I could do and I've been lucky enough to be able to make it my job.

"If I can give a sense of what I do and what my painting is about to other people who share my love of painting and perhaps help push them further on with their own ambitions that would be great.

"Anything to encourage young people to be creative is a good thing, and getting the different creative disciplines together is going to make for a really interesting and informative discussion.

"Having a network and a community of artists to work with was fairly crucial in helping me to survive and to establish myself as an artist when I first started out, so if this event gives people a chance to talk to each other and to draw inspiration from other creative people then this is going to really benefit everyone involved."

Funded by Manchester City Council it is hoped that this year's event will form the basis for further activity next year and in future years.

Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: "Tony Wilson gave a lot to Manchester and was always fiercely proud both of his northern roots and the talent that came out of the city.

"In recognition of this the Tony Wilson Experience is designed to stimulate, inspire and engage the next generation of cultural innovators from Manchester.

"We've had a fantastic response to the whole idea so far and I am confident that with the pool of creative talent we have at our disposal to take part in the event, this is going to be literally one of the most talked about, unmissable, creative 24 hours in the history of Manchester."

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20 Mar 2008
Joy Division documentary competition 
From joydivisionmovie.co.uk, the official UK website of the new Joy Division documentary directed by Grant Gee:

All you have to do is tell your friends to visit www.joydivisionmovie.co.uk and sign up for the email newsletter. When they sign up, they must enter your email address in the 'Referred By' box on the subscription panel.

The winner will be the subscriber who refers the most friends to the site by Thursday 10 April 2008 by 18:00 GMT.

That simple!

The lucky winner's screening will take place 18:30, Wednesday 16 April 2008 in London’s West End so please make sure before entering that you will be able to attend at this time.

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16 Mar 2008
Central Station Retrospective 
CENTRAL STATION DESIGN CELEBRATE 25 YEARS.

“The second half of the factory story is best summed up by the painterly eccentricity of Central Station, Matt, Pat and Karen.” - Tony Wilson

To celebrate, Central Station are to showcase a retrospective exhibition, to be held throughout May 2008 at Manchester's Richard Goodall Gallery. The exhibition will include a selection of limited edition fine art prints of some of their iconic artwork.

Central Station's legendary career has seen them working with bands such as Happy Mondays, James, and Black Grape. They have been responsible for creating a revolution in the art of record sleeve design. Their artwork is gloriously anarchic, free-flowing, and wildly evocative.

“We've always thought that graphic design is a bit up it's own arse, so in our designs we always tried to do something a bit looser, we wanted to establish and create our own identity. As kids we always thought beyond our means, obsessed with the idea that there was more to life than doing what everyone else did.” - Central Station.

Curator Richard Goodall notes, “Central Station’s work is widely accepted as amongst the most influential; they inspired a generation of artists, designers and music fans and helped define the infamous 'Madchester' era.”

Their 2001 collaboration with Michael Winterbottom on his film 24 Hour Party People opened the door to a wide range of TV and film design projects, from Channel 4's Hamburg Cell to ITV's Prime Suspect. This has led the team to working with such names as Helen Mirren, Robbie Coltrane, Tim Robbins, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.

Gallery curator Richard anticipates great success for the show, “We are honoured to be housing this exclusive exhibition. Central Station’s influential designs are part of both music recording and Manchester's history and this show will present a great viewing opportunity for music and art fans alike.”

and from another mag FROM LH TO CENTRAL STATION

Salford's greatest living artists celebrate 25 years of creating with a major retrospective exhibition...

There’s artists, there's graphic artists... and there’s Central Station, who mix and match everything into great big sensational multi-coloured, psyche soaked images that zap you somewhere else...

Best known for visually detonating the whole 'Madchester' thing with glowing, head pecking, iconic album artwork for the likes of Happy Mondays, James and Northside, Central Station are graphic art legends.

The team – Little Hulton's Matt and Pat Carroll, and Karen Jackson – are showing both original artwork and signed limited edition screenprints from the Madchester era, many in their original format before the type was overlaid. Also on display are mad, crackling portraits of mad yesteryear comedians plus loads of other snazzy, bazzing stuff. Do not miss.

Central Station Retrospective runs 2 – 31 May 2008 at the Richard Goodall
Gallery, 103 High Street, Manchester.

Further details www.richardgoodallgallery.com
Tel: 0161 832 3435

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13 Mar 2008
International Orange Ltd Edition AHW Print 
A limited edition signed A1 digital-print designed by Ben Kelly and Peter Saville has been produced especially for the International Orange exhibition in an edition of 100.

Copies can be purchased directly from the Stanley Picker Gallery at 45.00 plus P+P.

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Haçienda Warehouse Party - Sun 23 March 2008 
Sunday 23 March 2008
The Haçienda Warehouse Party

808 State – Live
Shaun Ryder - Live PA
Mike Pickering and Graeme Park
Peter Hook (ex-New Order)
A Guy Called Gerald (Live)
Plus many more

Venue: The Warehouse Project, Store Street (under Manchester Piccadilly railway station)

Entry: 15.00 GBP advance
Doors open: 21:30 til 05:00
For further information ring: 0161 835 3500

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12 Mar 2008
Joy Division documentary official website 
The new film documentary 'Joy Division' is released in the UK on 2 May.

The film's official UK website is at www.joydivisionmovie.co.uk. You can view the official trailer and sign up for email alerts and be one of the first to receive details of a major new competition.

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11 Mar 2008
International Orange 
This front page link for the Ben Kelly exhibition 'International Orange' has now been corrected.

Thank you for your forebearance.

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9 Mar 2008
A Party on Martin Hannett's Birthday 
Had he lived, it would be Martin Hannett's 60th Birthday on 31 May 2008. A special party featuring Birmingham-based Joy Division tribute band Transmission and DJ Curtis (of "virtual" Joy Division tribute band Curtis Ian and the Joy Division) is on at The Bakers Vaults in Stockport to celebrate the occasion.

--

View the flyer on MySpace. Here is the transcript:

A Party on Martin Hannett's Birthday
Bakers Vaults, Stockport

featuring

Transmission - the sound of Joy Division

plus

DJ Curtis (of Curtis Ian and the Joy Division)

Admission 4.00 GBP (proceeds to charity)
Saturday 31 May 2008

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Bakers Vaults
28 Market Place
Stockport SK1 1ES
www.bakers-vaults.co.uk
0161 477 7312

Thanks to Dave for info.

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The Memoirs of a Factory Designer 
Phill Pennington designed several key Factory Records pieces whilst working at Peter Saville Associates.

He talks exclusively to Cerysmatic Factory about this intriguing time in the development of Factory:

"I designed the Factory logo which is simple factory symbol, initially with five other symbols for a poster to be used by Alan Erasmus in Moscow (FAC 126). My approach to designing the symbols was inspired by the well known Isotype system designed by Otto Neurath and Gerd Arntz in the 1920s.

The factory symbol went through several variations as I tried different proportions different numbers of roofs, windows, waves in the smoke and so on before arriving at what seemed to be the most minimal version possible. The symbol was not at the point intended to be the Factory logo, but as I mentioned, one of a set specifically designed for FAC 126. I did produce one other symbol a Christmas tree in the same style, which was used on a Factory Christmas card.

Confusion (FAC 93) was the only New Order sleeve I actually designed in its entirety. The idea came from seeing small colour registration letters on a type of printers proof known as a Chromalin. These letters were made of squares and printed in the basic 4 colours (CMYK) with the words overlapping in a confusing way, this seemed to tie in with the title, and I found that the words New Order and Confusion had the same number of characters (including the space).

So it was possible to overlap them in a confusing way. I wanted the finished piece to look like it was part of a spacecraft from some time in the future, sort of markings in the same way that military aircraft have markings, a piece of space wreckage from the future. To this end, my original version had the FAC number (93) made out of dots. It was Brett Wickens who decided that it should be in Gill.

I still feel it would have been stronger the other way. The sleeve was printed in four colour, plus four special colours, plus embossing. I think that they lost money on each copy produced, and the embossing was dropped after the original run, nobody talked about costs at the time.

I did also design a seven-inch version of the sleeve, which consisted of a set of different parts of the 12 inch cropped to seven inches. A full printer's proof was produced, but for some reason the sleeve was never used. The record label used a blown up sample of dot matrix letters (fairly new technology at the time).

I did the artwork for the follow up single, 'Thieves Like Us' (FAC 103), the numbers around the central image were taken from an Eighteenth Century board game which Peter had seen in a magazine (and which coincidentally turned out to be called 'the Jews game'), we decided to make them completely random and then wait for people to read some arcane or sinister message into them, which they did in the music press.

I designed the typography for the Factory boxed cassette series. The type arrangement is set in Bembo and is based on mathematical matrices. The most time-consuming part was Peter choosing the colours for the cloth bindings. I understand they were difficult for record shops to display.

I also designed, with Peter, the title sequence for the Channel Four series 'Play at Home', and a poster based on this, in our then new 'tech' style. We essentially had a computer animator record the process of constructing some titles then just used all the 'technical bits' which would normally would be edited out."

--

Many thanks to Phill.

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Big Arm and Domino Bones headline National Battle of the Bands 
Bez will be at the Final of Stage Pass' National Battle of the Bands on 27 April 2008. His band Domino Bones will be a special guest for the evening along with Paul Ryder's Big Arm.

Tickets will be available from Jabez Clegg on 1 April 2008 @ 10.00 GBP each.

Battle of the Bands will be a all-day event broadcast and will be shown on Sky Channel 195 at a later date.

Judges include Owen Morris, Andy Rourke, Rowetta and David Nolan.
Section 25 live at North Bar, Blackburn 30 May 2008 
Section 25 celebrate the release of Dirty Disco by playing the North Bar in Blackburn on 30 May 2008.

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30 May 2008
North Bar
Town Hall St
Blackburn
Lancashire
BB2 1AG

Tel: 01254 682670

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8 Mar 2008
The Best of Joy Division 
'The Best of Joy Division' is released on Monday 24 March 2008. The 2-disc set features cover photography by Kevin Cummins. Disc 1 is a specially selected 'Best of' and is accompanied by Disc 2 which features Peel Sessions, other live tracks and an interview.

The compilation is presumably aimed at people who don't own Substance, Permanent or Heart and Soul.

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Artist: Joy Division
Title: The Best of Joy Division
Label: Warners
Available from: Amazon.co.uk

Disc 1

1. Digital
2. Disorder
3. Shadowplay
4. New Dawn Fades
5. Transmission
6. Atmosphere
7. Dead Souls
8. She's Lost Control
9. Love Will Tear Us Apart
10. These Days
11. 24 hours
12. Incubation
13. Isolation

Disc 2

John Peel Show 31 Jan 79

1. Exercise One
2. Insight
3. She's Lost Control
4. Transmission

John Peel Show 26 Nov 79

5. Love Will Tear Us Apart
6. Twenty Four Hours
7. Colony
8. Sound of Music

9. Transmission (Recorded live for Something Else 4 Sept 79)
10. She's Lost Control (Recorded live for Something Else 4 Sept 79)
11. Ian Curtis and Stephen Morris Interviewed by Richard Skinner

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Ike Yard has new photos 
Ike Yard and the New York City skyline are on MySpace.

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1978-2008 The Wilderness Years 
Vin Cassidy talks to Cerysmatic Factory about the background to the new Section 25 compilation 'Dirty Disco':

"The whole notion of an S25 "best of" CD a few years ago would have seemed totally alien to me, but I suppose a mellowing of years etc and these things start to make more sense. When James at LTM first suggested this collection of songs, to span a period from our first outpourings up until now, I wanted to call the album "1978-2008 The Wilderness Years", because sometimes that's where it feels we've been.

Misunderstood, misquoted, mislaid, slagged and belied by "false compare". My father said, "all comparisons are odious". He was right except I would add, "and so are the folk that make them".

For Larry and I this album is another marker stone on our sonic way. Rob Gretton wanted us to call our first album 'FUCK OFF'. He said we had a totally uncompromising approach and if other people did not like it they could do as the title suggested. We have not changed our attitude on this and we are still standing."

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Artist: Section 25
Title: 'Dirty Disco (Best Of)
Catalogue number: LTMCD 2515
Release date: March 2008
Available direct from LTM and in good record shops

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Joy Division Q&A at Curzon Soho 
On Thursday 24 April 2008 there is a special preview screening of 'Joy Division' at the Curzon Soho in London. The screening is followed by a Q&A session with director Grant Gee and writer Jon Savage.

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7 Mar 2008
FAC 73 25 
Thanks to Mike for spotting that today is the 25th Anniversary of the release of FAC 73 Blue Monday by New Order.

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Blue Monday links


discogs.com


Blue Monday Owners Club.com

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3 Mar 2008
So we knocked on Rob Gretton's door and... 
In this excellent video (Go to Player, it's in Part 2) on VBS TV, Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie talks about how he joined The Wake, sent a demo tape to and then met Rob Gretton followed by supporting New Order and borrowing Peter Hook's bass guitar.

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The Red Bull Academy Lectures 
This lecture series is available in audio and also as a series of transcriptions and features Denis Bovell (ex-X-O-Dus), Peter Hook, Stephen Mallinder, Greg Wilson, plus many more.

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1 Mar 2008
Dirty Disco 
LTM releases 'Dirty Disco', the first 'best of' collection from Section 25 this March.

It marks 30 years of SXXV and features tracks from all phases, line-ups and albums, as well as an exclusive new 'lounge' version of 'Knew Noise'.

Featured producers include Martin Hannett, Bernard Sumner, Donald Johnson and Ian Curtis.

The booklet includes archive images, an SXXV appreciation by John Robb, 15 tracks and 67 minutes of music.

--

LTMCD 2515 'Dirty Disco (Best Of)
Release date: March 2008

Tracklisting

Knew Noise
Up To You
Dirty Disco
New Horizon
Haunted
Wretch
Sakura
Warhead
Beating Heart
Looking From A Hilltop (Remix)
Reflection
Bad News Week
Power Base
Winterland II
Knew Noise (Lounge Version)

Available direct from LTM and in good record shops priced 10.00 GBP.

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Unseen Joy Division 
Thanks to Tim for this link to Flickr photos of Joy Division playing Mountford Hall in Liverpool on Tuesday 2 October 1979 (supporting Buzzcocks).

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Soundtrack of the Steppenwolf 
The soundtrack album by The Durutti Column to the Twelve Stars production of 'Treatise on The Steppenwolf' which had a limited run at the Glasgow Tramway in 2004 is set to finally come out on cd via LTM in September.

A release was mooted for May but this has been put back so as not to coincide with the release of the new Durutti Column album 'Sunlight to Blue, Blue to Blackness' on Kooky Records.

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Treatise on the Steppenwolf
LTMCD 2518

Tracklisting:

A Beautiful Thought (Pt 1)
Stupid Steppenwolf (Pt 1)
Stupid Steppenwolf (Pt 2)
The Mothers & the Fathers
A Wolf of the Steppes
Interlude
The Title on the Cover
Divided, Magic Theatre
Soul Track
Harry Dreams the Dream
A Beautiful Thought (Pt 2)
Lullaby (live)
Mello (live)

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Wistful 
Moby, who new album 'Last Night' is a "a love letter to dance music in New York City", talks to Dave Simpson of The Guardian. Amongst other things (Christianity, sex parties, etc) he goes into anecdote mode about playing New Dawn Fades with New Order:

"Knowing that the last time they played it Ian Curtis was alive... And because they hadn't played it since 1980, I had to teach Barney and Hooky their own song. Which has four notes!"

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Mine's a Prius 
Anton Corbijn, the director of Control, is one of The Guardian's featured drivers in the "Me and my Prius" G2 feature about the iconic hybrid car.

Aside from the green benefits of driving a hybrid, Anton notes other benefits: "There is also more head space in the Prius. I'm 6ft 5in and it's a very good size for me. My father, who died recently, used to wear a hat in the 50s and 60s, and he would only buy a car that he could fit in with his hat on. His first car was a VW Beetle. My father could have fitted in a Prius."


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Blogger Archives
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Peter Saville colour wheel
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)

The Durutti Column