Music Memoirs & Biogs Feb09

Music Memoirs & Biogs...

A round-up of some of the best Music memoirs and biogs I read recently.

Talking Joy Division & New Order with Peter Hook...

Legendary bass player and founding member of one of the most influential British bands of the last 40 years, Peter Hook took the time out of a busy touring schedule to talk frankly about all things Joy Division and New Order. Hook continues to tour with his band The Light, offering his re-interpretations of his former bands classic songs.   Thanks for taking the time to talk to us Peter. So, you have been a busy man the last couple of years – your book Unknown Pleasures was published to almost universal acclaim and you have been touring the Joy Division and New Order albums with The Light. What has the reaction been like from live audiences to albums that are regarded with such reverence? The reactions so far from all of the audiences have been absolutely fantastic, I have been completely blown away by it all at times. I understand that the albums are held in very high regard so the band and I try to reproduce it all as respectfully and accurately as we possibly can. Playing the Joy Division records is a very different experience to playing the New Order ones but I love playing them all. Our current tour is performing Movement and Power, Corruption & Lies by New Order which is a really great live set, we have been fortunate in that the records have translated very well into the live environment.   Was there any trepidation on your part in taking on the vocal duties and interpreting the words of such an iconic vocalist and lyricist as Ian Curtis? Absolutely, I am not a frontman by trade so at first I found it very daunting and I was extremely nervous, but as we did more and more gigs I got a lot more comfortable with it all and now I would like to think that I do a good job in that role. Obviously I will never be Ian and I would never try to be, but I just try to do the best job I can. Next week we will play our 200th live gig so I have had a lot of experience and now I am a lot more confident with it. Your book ‘Unknown Pleasures – Inside Joy Division’ was a fantastic read. It did a great job of demystifying the band and showing that you were just four blokes who happened to make this incredible music. Was that part of your goal with the book – to strip away some of the myths that had built up around the Joy Division? Yes I would say so, there is a lot of myth that surrounds Joy Division so I guess I wanted to bring across that other side to us all. I was sick of reading books about Joy Division by people who were not actually there, and who were just speculating in my eyes as to what went on. So it was great to be able to set the record straight with my own book and I have been absolutely delighted to see that people have taken to it just as they did with the Hacienda book. Speaking of books, have you read Morrissey’s book yet? Do you think The Smiths will ever reform? They are the last ones left, aren’t they… The Stone Roses got back together, even “New Order” is back now, albeit not properly, obviously… So the next in line would be the Smiths reunion. Personally I hope it doesn’t happen as it’s all Manchester has left! I haven’t read Morrissey’s book and I doubt I will to be honest, I’ve never been a big fan of his.   As a matter of interest, have you ever thought how Joy Division would have sounded two or three albums down the line if Ian hadn’t died? Do you think you would have taken the more dance orientated path...