24 Mar 2004
Systems of Romance 
The Shareholders' Analysis continues with Fac 3: Second Factory poster: CV, JD, & TB's [Tiller Boys]. White on Black, simultaneous to Systems of Romance cover [?]; 250; October '79, all put up, One gig.

In this interview with Rick Poynor published in Eye 17/95, Peter Saville expands on the influences for Fac 3 including the 'Systems of Romance' reference:

[Rick Poynor] At what stage did you become aware of post-modernism as a cultural idea?

[Peter Saville] In 1978, while working on the second Factory poster. On a trip to London I picked up a book of Philip Johnson's proposals for the AT&T building in New York. On the cover was the broken pediment. It made me think that maybe I wasn't wrong in wanting to use Tschichoid's later work - that and a John Foxx album cover for Ultravox [Systems of Romance] with serif type on a black background. Within 12 months, neo-classicism and the influence of architectural post-modernism were everywhere. People in New York were buying columns to put in their apartments. My contribution was the graphic equivalent. It was always an emotive feeling and after a year or so I began to trust in my senses. I didn't need to wait for supportive signals and became brave enough to take a step myself, but nearly always informed by some historical reference.

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Biting Tongues

In the grey days of late 1970s post-punk Manchester, youth culture was a serious affair: every musical performance was measured mostly by the conviction of its delivery. The term 'New Wave' opened up free vistas where acquired skills could once again be exercised after punk's monochrome blur. It could be applied to anything from a James 'Blood' Ulmer record to the latest Throbbing Gristle release, Magazine to Swell Maps. Move outside that terrain into Sun Ra, Parliament, Frank Sinatra and Martin Denny, and your options were suddenly without limit...

Then came Tony Wilson's Factory Club (at the Russell Club in Hulme) offering an open invitation to experiment that was taken up when Ken Hollings, Howard Walmsley, Eddie Sherwood and a few others decided to make some noise to accompany their 16mm silent epic Biting Tongues. A further performance followed a few weeks later, when Colin Seddon and Graham Massey disbanded their Post Natals project and joined up. The film itself, a flashing series of negative images, became a memory; the name remained.

- extract from the LTM Biting Tongues biography

Factory Records

The Durutti Column