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Power, Corruption & Lies [Collector's Edition]

September 30, 2010 | Format: MP3
Also available in CD Format

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Format: Audio CD
The MUSIC on these New Order reissues get a 5/5, easily. However, there were far too many egregious mistakes made in the creation of the discs themselves to give them a pass. Only the first discs were re-mastered though they still have some problems, it is the bonus discs that are an absolute mess.

Warner Music/Rhino know about these problems, but there is yet no word on any forthcoming fixes. So I'd hold off until these issues are addressed.

Noted below are the specific problems with the PC&L reissue:

1, Age of consent
2, We all stand
3, The village
4, 586 ("abrupt ending", "drops the last 4 bass notes")
5, Your silent face
6, Ultraviolence
7, Ecstasy
8, Leave me alone

Power, Corruption and Lies - bonus disc:
1, Blue Monday (L/R pans 0:07[sudden], and between 0:19 and 2:24. At 2:24 it pans back again. Unconfirmed whether this is on the original 12 inch)
2, The Beach
3, Confusion - Clicks at 4:04 and 6:00 (Left channel click at 8:06)
4, Thieves like us
5, Lonesome Tonight (clicks at 0:40 and 0:59)
6, Murder - "Clicks" at 0:35, 1:08, 1:29, 1:43, 2:03, 2:31, 2:43, 2:50, 3:00, 3:19, 3:26
7, Thieves like us (instrumental) (click at 1:03 )
8, Confusion (instrumental)
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Format: Audio CD
Whenever someone complains that electronic music is totally void of warmth or realism, I just point to this album. New Order play electronic music with the urgent and manic shifts of rock. Bernards vocals are earnest yet detatched, with guitar work that is jagged, random and sparse; Gillian and Stephen's percussion and synth sequences are both lively and rigid, an up-beat/down-march; Peter's basslines are fluid yet kinetic. This is a work of ironic friction. The warmth and humanity flow thru the restrained and urgent detatchment. The whole album sounds like a friend that wants to say something but can't, hiding it behind his/her eyes.
I would consider Power, Corruption & Lies an artistic/pop masterpiece in the true sense. The electronic and post-punk meanderings are only the charms that envelope the wonderfully angular pop sense that Bernard brings to his lyrics. Everything is so vague and pretty; it's like the album cover...just a random slice of still-life, full of colour and restraint. Tracks like 'Your Silent Face' or '5-8-6' explode with edgy, manic shades of light, sorta like impressionism via expressionism.
You won't be let down by this album. With the band themselves producing it, it's a natural workout of rock and electronics, perfectly blended together to make a classic.
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Format: Audio CD
This album is definitely in my top 10 of 1980s albums. I listened to it daily throughout 1983 and 1984. That said, I believe some clarification is in order.

The review just previous to this one incorrectly states that "The Village" was not on the original "Power, Corruption & Lies" that was released on vinyl in 1983. Actually, "The Village" was on the album, but "Blue Monday" backed with "The Beach" was a separate 12" single from around the same time. It was added when the album was released on CD a few years later. Unfortunately the record label thought it fitting to disrupt the original track order and "flow" of the album. These two songs should be listed as "bonus tracks" and be put at the end of the album, or maybe be left off altogether, since they are also on the "Substance" collection. What's more, Amazon didn't help by having their own review done by someone who was obviously unfamiliar with the original album.
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By A Customer on October 19, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Let me just clear something up: New Order are not, nor have they ever been, a new wave synth-pop band. Their music inspired a lot of it, yes, and their most famous songs ('Bizarre Love Triangle', 'Blue Monday') were synth pop but the timelessness, power, emotion and innovation of their music has them being recognized now as easily one of the most respected, influential and popular bands of all time. Too much to be lumped in with some trendy garbage of the era. Their albums are modern classics.
It's too bad the sleeve for this album lost its magic in translation to cd format. The vinyl version of this album is stunning.
The music catches them wanting to ditch the heavy, stylized gloom of their Joy Division work and 'Movement'. Yet, they hadn't fully committed to making flat-out pop music like on every subsequent release. So every song bubbles with the sound of a psychedelic post-punk band with subtle programming echoing the New York City hip-hop and electro at the time. The lyrics are borderline incomprehensible, but they work because against the odds they evoke strong emotions, more so then on any other New Order album. The music is still overwhelmingly sad and joyous at the same time, a New Order trademark.
There are two very different versions of this album. The U.S. Warner release includes 'Blue Monday' and 'The Beach'. My problem with this version is that after the song 'Leave Me Alone' the album should just end, it's a natural and beautiful ending for the album, instead it jumps into a bouncy 7-minute electro workout 'The Beach'. It's just wrong!
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Format: Audio CD
Who could listen to the opening riff of "Age of Consent" and not be hooked? My first hearing of that remains a high point of my encounters with pop culture. I agree with other reviewers who've said that the album in its original form without "Blue Monday" was "better"; it was, but I'm still glad to have it, since I'm not a perfectionist about keeping cultural artifacts in some pristine state.
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