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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
$42.28 $5.85

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Biography by Jason Ankeny

Rising from the ashes of the legendary British post-punk unit Joy Division, the enigmatic New Order triumphed over tragedy to emerge as one of the most influential and acclaimed bands of the 1980s; embracing the electronic textures and disco rhythms of the underground club culture many years in advance of its contemporaries, the group's pioneering fusion of ... Read more in Amazon's New Order Store

Visit Amazon's New Order Store
for 152 albums, 18 photos, discussions, and more.

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Qwest / Wea
  • ASIN: B000002LCK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (129 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,746 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Ceremony
2. Everything's Gone Green
3. Temptation
4. Blue Monday
5. Confusion
6. Thieves Like Us
7. Perfect Kiss
8. Subculture
9. Shellshock
10. State of the Nation
See all 12 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. In a Lonely Place
2. Procession
3. Mesh
4. Hurt
5. The Beach
6. Confusion Instrumental
7. Lonesome Tonight
8. Murder
9. Thieves Like Us Instrumental
10. Kiss of Death
See all 12 tracks on this disc

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

2 x CD Compilation
US 1987

1-2Everything's Gone Green5:30
1-4Blue Monday7:29
1-6Thieves Like Us6:36
1-7The Perfect Kiss8:02
1-10State Of The Nation6:32
1-11Bizarre Love Triangle6:44
1-12True Faith5:51
2-1In A Lonely Place6:16
2-3Cries And Whispers3:25
2-5The Beach7:19
2-6Confusion (Instrumental)7:38
2-7Lonesome Tonight5:11
2-9Thieves Like Us (Instrumental)6:57
2-10Kiss Of Death7:02
2-11Shame Of The Nation7:54

It's a simple concept--the first dozen singles by New Order collected, a couple of them rerecorded--but it's also a totally entertaining seven-year history of the band that married British post-punk alienation to the relentless hedonism of the dance floor. The band's hits were always deeply unconventional (like the haunting "Blue Monday," essentially a seven-minute drum machine test with a short lyric that alluded to the Falklands War), but they were brilliant productions, layering dozens of electronic countermelodies and percussion tricks over Barney Sumner's uncertain warble and Peter Hook's lead bass parts. Though they're audio snapshots of the dance beats of their time, they've held up both as club classics and as idiosyncratic rock songs. --Douglas Wolk

Customer Reviews

"Bizarre Love Triangle" 20/10 12.
Well, for me it is anyway...I've been catching up with New Order songs ever since junior high, so every song reminds me of some time in my life since then.
All of this makes 'Substance' an essential collection for serious New Order fans, as well as being the best place to start for casual fans.
H. Jin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

96 of 101 people found the following review helpful By 33-year old wallflower on December 23, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Shortly after Ian Curtis committed suicide in 1980, it appeared as if his band Joy Division had died with him, and its members would now have to give up what were once very promising careers. But the surviving members weren't going to give up that easy & after changing their name to New Order (with the addition of keyboardist Gillian Gilbert & Joy Division guitarist Bernard Sumner taking over vocal duties), they released their first single "Ceremony" to modest commercial success, but substantial raves in the dance club underground. New Order released four studio albums in the first half of the 1980s, then in 1987, created an early career-capper with the unique retrospective SUBSTANCE.
Certainly smarter than your average greatest-hits collection, SUBSTANCE mostly is a gathering of New Order's early singles that never appeared on their albums, along with 12" single mixes that perhaps had become rare almost immediately after their initial release. 24 songs of these types are here on SUBSTANCE for posterity, but instead of it being another way of bringing royalities to the band, it's an extremely fine introduction to New Order, who at this point were just on the cusp of mainstream chart success.
New Order's debut single "Ceremony" was actually one of the last songs Joy Division ever wrote, and it hints at a possible lightening up that the band may have been undergoing at the time of Ian's death. It certainly is much warmer than the engaging coldness of most Joy Division music, and one can only wonder what it would have been like had Ian lived long enough to record it. "In A Lonely Place" is another great Joy Division cast-off that New Order manages to make into their own.
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53 of 55 people found the following review helpful By hannibalsmith on November 7, 2001
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The word "essential" has been used to describe just about every CD available for sale on Amazon by one reviewer or another, but if any album deserves this description its Substance 1987 by New Order.

During the 80's, New Order crafted a unique and wonderful sound combining the fretty guitar work and almost-spoken vocals of Bernard Sumner, the absolutely wicked, high range lead bass guitar playing of Peter Hook, Stephen Morris's near-machine like drumming, and Gillian Gilbert's swirling keyboards.

Danceable, introspective, almost despondent, New Order somehow created brilliant, emotional songs through vocals and instrumental playing almost entirely lacking in any emotion, and, in so doing, laid the groundwork for much of today's dance music.
No one who appreciates wonderful music, then, should allow themselves to be unfamiliar with New Order, which is why this CD is a perfect purchase as it includes all of their best work.

Everything is here - the brilliantly written Ceremony ("Note for whom wheels are turning / Turn again and turn towards this time...."), the drug induced lyrics of Temptation ("Oh, you've got green eyes / Oh, you've got blue eyes, Oh, you've got grey eyes..."), the infamous, detached Blue Monday who's drum machine created beat sounds only slightly less machine-like than Bernard Sumner's vocals on the same, The Perfect Kiss, a beautiful, complicated multi-layered song combining just about every element of New Order's sound, the classic Bizarre Love Triangle ("Every time I see you falling / I get down on my knees and pray") and the sublime True Faith ("I used to to think that the day would never come / I'd see the light in the face of the morning sun...")

And that's just disc 1. Disc 2 has the b-sides from the above songs.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Angry Mofo on November 9, 2003
Format: Audio CD
With the death of Ian Curtis, everything ground to a halt for Joy Division. Unable to continue in the vein of songs like "Komakino" and "Decades," unable to embark on their American tour, unsure of where to go after this sudden catastrophe, but unwilling to just give up music and disappear, at that time the remaining members of the band could only finish what was already started; their first release as New Order was the single "Ceremony" with B-side "In a Lonely Place." These are Ian Curtis' last poems, and the music for them had already been written, but Joy Division had not had time to release them, and so they came out under the New Order name with Bernard Sumner on vocals. Sumner doesn't do a bad job, really, bringing just the right restraint to them, but all he succeeds in doing is making Curtis' absence felt. Amidst the tender serenity of "Ceremony" and the haunted plains of "In a Lonely Place," not hearing Ian's familiar voice is heartbreaking. Needless to say, among Joy Division's followers these songs have attained the status of lost treasures. The most valuable aspect of the big Joy Division box set Heart and Soul is the presence of two low-fidelity rehearsal recordings of these very songs, filled with tape hiss, ending abruptly, but with Ian on vocals. For New Order, however, this was only a first step.
The Everything's Gone Green EP is the sound of New Order's road back from Joy Division's sound. The dance elements are there already - the jumping, processed synthesizers in the title track and "Procession" - but Sumner's singing still carries traces of Curtis.
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