11/07/16 Urban Lounge, Salt Lake City, UT
11/08/16 House Of Blues, San Diego, CA
11/11/16 Granada Theatre, Dallas, TX
11/12/16 The Mohawk, Austin, TX
11/14/16 Republic, New Orleans, LA
11/15/16 Terminal West, Atlanta, GA
11/17/16 Plaza Live, Orlando, FL
11/18/16 Culture Room, Fort Lauderdale, FL
11/19/16 The Ritz Ybor, Tampa, FL
11/21/16 The Orange Peel, Asheville, NC
11/22/16 Cat's Cradle, Carrboro, NC
11/23/16 Howard Theatre, Washington, DC
11/25/16 Trocadero Theatre, Philadelphia, PA
11/26/16 Sinclair, Boston, MA
11/27/16 Theatre Fairmount, Montreal, QC
11/29/16 Danforth Music Hall, Toronto, ON
12/03/16 Porto Alegre, Brazil Opiniao
New Order played by an old friend, and the darkness of Joy Division somehow shining bright and almost happy- Peter Hook and The Light played their Substance: New Order and Joy Division to a packed Mainroom last week at First Avenue.
DJ Jake Rudh
Music videos from Rudh usually played are typical late 70’s/early 80’s MTV and underground artists... but he always works in a lot more David Bowie videos in his recent programming (this was also the case when he DJ’ed for The Faint last month as well), still a major influence on him.
Turnout for the show was pretty incredible for Sunday night, with mostly fans in the 30s and 40s range. For New Order and, especially Joy Division fans, seeing Peter Hook & the Light is possibly the only way for them to hear some of these classic songs live. With a simple, “Evenin” spoken by Hooky, the ninety-minute first set was off and running with 1984’s ‘Lonesome Tonight’.
Though the band has only been in existence for six years (after a non-so-pleasant breakup with New Order), Hooky plays with very familiar company as Kehoe, Poole, and Pottsy all were with him in previous band Monaco and Bates, who played the majority of basslines, is Hook’s own son.
Hooky himself sang most of the songs in a mid-range voice that lent itself well to both band eras, though less nuanced than Bernard Sumner, less goth and dark than Ian Curtis. He played bass like a master butcher, slicing the most choice cuts, or a sought-after surgeon, stepping forward to make the biggest impression with a solo, then backing off and letting the band finish up.
No one plays bass like Hook and it was obvious from those first few songs that New Order probably needs him, than vice versa, though he seems to be doing just fine, as-is and the sixty-year old still has remarkable stamina to play a three hour show regularly.
Hook’s signature high bass lines were evident early, from first single ‘Ceremony’ to the classic ‘Temptation’. As the musical time machine moved forward into New Order’s more electronic periods, drummer Kehoe often excused himself as a drum machine took over the beats and Hook’s basslines moved higher and more melodic, to compete with all the electronica.
The last half of the first set, got the most crowd response, as that represented the time period when New Order’s music was most on the radio, in films, and other media, and most accessible to mainstream audiences. The one-two punch of ‘Bizarre Love Triangle’ and ‘True Faith’ was faithful to their originals and stunning to hear live back-to-back, with somewhat deep cut, ‘1963’ (a b-side to True Faith) ending the first set.
Though the show’s tone changed dramatically after the intermission as the band re-emerged to cover the Joy Division portion for the next hour, it was no less danceable and darkness never held so much light, as the songs unfolded one after another.
The darkness would prove too inviting for anyone to resist as the last half of the set was filled with one classic from the next—from the howls of “dance, dance, dance to the radio” on ‘Transmission’, to Hooky’s signature bassline anchoring ‘She’s Lost Control’, to cries of “they keep calling me” on ‘Dead Souls’.
A rumbling ‘Atmosphere’ was dedicated to the late Prince by Hook, fully aware he was standing in the same spot so much Minneapolis music history was made, with its “walk in silence, don't walk away, in silence, see the danger” taking on new meanings.
With an early “Happy Halloween” greeting from Hook, he huffed a final deep breath and turned the page on his music stand notes to “play something spooky”, ending the show with ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’, and Hook pointing at various crowd members during each of the choruses as that signature bass riff echoed through the former bus terminal.
Taking us all on an almost three-hour time trip, covering over thirty years, Peter Hook and the Light reminded everyone of why he is the legendary bassist he is, and why there is still substance in his music. This is a show not to be missed, if it plays anywhere near your town.
Peter Hook & the Light at First Avenue, Minneapolis (30 October 2016)