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Heart & Soul Box set, Original recording remastered

72 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, Original recording remastered, August 28, 2001
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$149.95 $35.83

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The most complete anthology of these post-punk gods ever compiled! From the early demos they made when they were still known as Warsaw to their essential albums Unknown Pleasures and Closer , this 4-CD set contains everything they ever released along with a plethora of rarities (flexi-disc versions, outtakes, radio sessions) and unreleased recordings. You'll get multiple versions of essential songs like Love Will Tear Us Apart and She's Lost Control plus unreleased live 1979-80 performances of Dead Souls; The Only Mistake; Insight; Disorder , and more! The massive booklet tells the full Joy Division tale. 81 tracks!

Though Joy Division's anxious, angular songs echoed time-honored art-school obsessions from the Doors through Eno, they never stooped to cheap nostalgia or pretentious condescension. Neither bridge nor battering ram, the band's music--haunting and hypnotic, with an emotionally naked core as bleak as it was compelling--has transcended disposable pop culture past and present; leader-vocalist Ian Curtis's 1980 suicide only underscored the notion that Joy Division was a band out of time, figuratively as well as literally. In just over two years, the Manchester, U.K., group constructed a legacy whose influences have surfaced with the surviving members' New Order through macabre, psychically-damaged Curtis/Cobain parallels to the sonic atmospherics of Radiohead. And if their recorded output was limited, it has long been ill served by the record industry's worst Cuisinart instincts. Thus, this artfully designed four-disc, 81-track box should reign as the band's definitive recorded history. Journalist Jon Savage collaborated with band members Bernard Sumner and Peter Hook to assemble Joy Division's legacy into four subtly different chapters. Discs one and two center around the band's albums, Unknown Pleasures and Closer respectively, culling singles, demos, and outtakes. Disc three gathers BBC and Peel sessions and more than a dozen previously unreleased outtakes. The final chapter may be the most artistically revealing: 17 live tracks that represent not only the best of the band's darkly compelling songs, but show their riveting stage presence during a performance peak that spanned but seven months. The accompanying booklet presents an almost Rashomon-like take on the band, from its spare, impressionistic imagery through its multiple essays and, crucially, the lyrics of Ian Curtis, starkly presented as the candid, disquieting poetry that was the essence of Joy Division's murmuring heart and troubled soul. --Jerry McCulley

Disc: 1
1. Digital
2. Glass
3. Disorder
4. Day of the Lords
5. Candidate
See all 21 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. She's Lost Control 12
2. Sound of Music
3. Atmosphere
4. Dead Souls
5. Komakino
See all 17 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. Warsaw
2. No Love Lost
3. Leaders of Men
4. Failures
5. The Drawback
See all 24 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. Dead Souls [Live]
2. The Only Mistake [Live]
3. Insight [Live]
4. Candidate [Live]
5. Wilderness [Live]
See all 19 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 28, 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set, Original recording remastered
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Rhino
  • ASIN: B00005MKHQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #174,948 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

204 of 216 people found the following review helpful By ifutureman on August 15, 2005
Format: Audio CD
What can you say about Joy Division? They aren't for everyone, that's for sure. A lot of folks cannot get past Ian Curtis' voice, and I understand that; sometimes even I throw up my hands and ask, "Why in the world didn't Martin Hannett tell Ian to do another take? Surely they could have gotten him to sing just a wee bit more in tune."

But on the other hand, sometimes the weird, flat voice is actually good for the track - sometimes, the ghostly, haunted lyrics benefit from Curtis' ghostly, haunted, slightly atonal vocal style. So overall, most of the studio recordings work very well. Live, however, there are a lot of moments that are almost excruciating to the ears. On top of that, the fact that the three musicians in the band were all amatuers themselves made for exciting but inconsistent performances.

WHY THIS BOX SET IS GOOD: Remastered versions of the two proper studio albums "Unknown Pleasures" and "Closer." Both these albums remain stunning landmarks of "post-punk" music. The musical style of this band was quite distinctive - bass often carried the melody and the guitar functioned more as the true rhythm instrument. Drum parts tended toward machine-like grooves, but played by a human being. All in all, a unique approach that could only have been developed by guys who truly didn't know better; unaffected by any sort of technical proficiency, Joy Division had to forge their songs with the most rudimentary tools. Miraculously, they managed to create an influential and sophisticated sound with few obvious antecedents.

In addition to the two albums, this also includes almost all their singles and outtakes. Plus, you get some stuff that was never officially released, including three tracks from their unreleased 1978 "Warsaw" album.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mark Nettesheim on September 23, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Yes, there was definitely too much of a lag between the European release and the US release of this one -- so much so that I myself had to take advantage of the fact that I was living in Spain to get my hands on this one a couple of years ago. Even still, after all this time I'm still somewhat at a loss for words to describe "Heart and Soul," so that's a good sign.
One thing that I can say is that everything about this box set is just beautiful, from the packaging to the lyrics to the songs themselves. The cost may be a bit off-putting right now, but it's probably the most thorough anthology that's likely to come around, so it's well worth it. You get all the tracks from "Unknown Pleasures," "Closer" and "Substance" (though not "Still") -- plus some assorted live and demo versions that had been previously unreleased.
The albums and the compilation are standards, of course. Some of the demos are pretty much hit-or-miss, and I've heard that the sound mixes and even the playing itself at Joy Division concerts were often pretty bad. But even with the diminished sound quality, the live tracks here (particularly the ones from The Factory in Hulme -- roughly the first half of disc 4) have this rollicking, transcendental power that makes current bands like Nickelback, Staind and Fuel, not to mention the pretense behind most of the genre of "emo," seem like adolescent journal entries put to bland rock arrangements in comparison. And there are a few songs toward the end (the live "Autosuggestion" and particularly "Ceremony" and "In a Lonely Place" -- the latter two from the last recording session before Ian Curtis's suicide) where you can really hear how close he was to the final breakdown.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Reed Hubbard on October 1, 2002
Format: Audio CD
It is a testament to the brilliance of Joy Division that so few (obviously literate) people can find sufficient words to describe them. I would argue that Joy Division cannot be described in layman's terms alone. Joy Division is an experience.

In a day when so many indie rockers pose against brick walls and train tracks, staring into space to give the impression that they are burdened by the weightiness of their own introspection, it is almost hard to view Joy Division in contemporary terms. But Joy Division WERE powerful and WERE thought provoking, yet never pretended to be more than they actually were: a quartet of lads from Manchester/Macclesfield.

A listener unfamiliar with JD might hear the music and conjure up all sorts of images in his minds eye, from spike haired punks to black eyed goths, of the band's appearance. Upon opening the excellent book included with Heart and Soul, he would be stunned to see four rather normal looking individuals. But Joy Division were anything but normal and the music exposes that starkly. Rather than display their angst through silly tattoos, ragged garments or ridiculous piercings, Joy Division channeled 100% of their emotion into their music.

Thousands have vainly attempted to follow in the footsteps of Curtis, Sumner, Hook, and Morris. There is not a single recording of Joy Division that isn't brimming with brilliance, and some songs ("Atmosphere," "Novelty," "Disorder," and several others) are true genius. ("Genius" is an overused word in relation to popular music, but Joy Division's work truly qualifies.)

This collection is a must for any Joy Division fan. For those who want something with depth and insight, yet devoid of pomp and pretension, Heart and Soul is the perfect solution.

Do not pass this collection by.
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