If you’re a new wave lad like myself, Peter Hook, famed co-founder of Joy Division and New Order, is one of the top bassists alive. He has an unmistakable groove rooted in the glam, and I daresay even blues, of the 1970s — but one that grows and spreads forward into the digital age and beyond.
Hooky remains today a singular and unmistakable musician, keeping his work alive with Peter Hook & The Light, which kicked off a North American Tour in Philadelphia recently to pay tribute to the New Order albums Technique and Republic. Jason Nicholson took some pictures of the band at Union Transfer.
Appearing on Oct. 24, Hooky and company began the show with a short set of Joy Division songs — playing six distinctive tunes drawn from the short-lived original band’s catalog, including “Warsaw,” “Twenty Four Hours” (a personal fave), and “Dead Souls,” among others.
But then the damn broke and the flood of music filled the Union Transfer with “Fine Time,” the first song from Technique, starting a substantial set of 15 New Order tunes that toured through “Round & Round,” “Run,” and “Vanishing Point,” and the total nine tracks representing the album.
Stream New Order’s Technique and Republic Live at Koko London on Sept. 28, 2018, on Spotify:
A third set began with “Regret” to introduce the audience to Republic, and Peter Hook & The Light paced through “World,” “Spooky,” “Chemical,” and other tunes that registered New Order’s full-blown entry into the ’90s. In the encore, Peter Hook & The Light played top New Order tunes — “Blue Monday,” “True Faith,” and “Temptation” — prior to closing the gig with “Love Will Tear Us Apart” by Joy Division.
At the center of it all, Hooky stood stage center, injecting grit into the oft ethereal electronic numbers of his former band. Like a human turbine, Hooky grounded himself and churned out irresistible earworms. He certainly does the name Factory proud.
Find Peter Hook & The Light’s full itinerary on the band’s website. This is a must-see show if Hooky comes to your town whether you simply love New Order or you’ve had the pleasure to see the band previously.
Here are some photos of Peter Hook performing at Union Transfer on Oct. 24, 2019. All photos copyright and courtesy of Jason Nicholson.