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Unknown Pleasures (Collector's Edition)

160 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 30, 2007
$50.00 $9.95

Editorial Reviews

2007 digitally remastered and expanded two CD edition of the influential Manchester quartet's 1979 debut album. Joy Division's influence on modern music is not only based around the band's unique sound, but also their vision, their personalities and their intense and troubled vocalist, Ian Curtis who committed suicide on the eve of their first tour of the U.S. Disc One features the original album containing 10 tracks including 'Disorder', 'She's Lost Control' and 'Interzone'. Disc Two features 12 tracks recorded live at The Factory in Manchester, April of 1980. Rhino.

Disc: 1
1. Disorder
2. Day of the Lords
3. Candidate
4. Insight
5. New Dawn Fades
6. She's Lost Control
7. Shadowplay
8. Wilderness
9. Interzone
10. I Remember Nothing
Disc: 2
1. Dead Souls [Live]
2. The Only Mistake [Live]
3. Insight [Live]
4. Candidate [Live]
5. Wilderness [Live]
6. She's Lost Control [Live]
7. Shadowplay [Live]
8. Disorder [Live]
9. Interzone [Live]
10. Atrocity Exhibition [Live]
See all 12 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 30, 2007)
  • Original Release Date: 2007
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Rhino / London Records
  • ASIN: B000WGWW7G
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (160 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #166,535 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

200 of 219 people found the following review helpful By "undeletablearchive" on October 27, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Joy Division's `Unknown Pleasures' arrived in 1979 without warning or fanfare. Product inwards, this group was immediately different: austere, minimal graphics; monochrome, formal clothes; ascetic, modernist titles. And then there's the music, whose beauty, power, and long-term importance is hard to measure. In 1979, many things didn't exist in rock, and Joy Division, with this record, brought them into being. First, the idea that rock music could express emotions other than drugs, rebellion, youth, love: `Unknown Pleasures', for the first time in rock, expands the palette to include sadness, murderousness, self-hatred, despair; without apology, without embarrassment - like the entry of Greek Tragedy onto the rock stage. Without this, no Nirvana. No Husker Du. No Metallica, even. Second, an entirely new vocabulary. Melodic, dolorous bass, treated as a lead instrument. Baritone vocals, harsh, deep and dramatic, but with no interest in theatrics. Metronomic, disinterested percussion. Textural, ambient guitar that also bites, warps, and attacks. Third, production-as-aesthetic. The sound emerges out of inky blackness, prismatic like shards of broken glass: Noise and noise effects are as important as structure. Many genres and many bands owe their existence and their careers to the simultaneous, unprecedented innovations this record makes. It is as groundbreaking and original - if not more - as Revolver, Axis: Bold as Love, Fun House, or Ziggy Stardust, in whose company it should be kept. In other words, a fundamental, utterly essential work for any rock music enthusiast.
What about the songs?
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64 of 68 people found the following review helpful By Un Anglophile on July 10, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Joy Division, originally called Warsaw, was formed in 1977 by a group of Mancunian lads (Ian Curtis, Bernard Albrecht [later changed to Sumner], Peter Hook, and Stephen Morris) that were hugely influenced by Bowie, Iggy Pop, and the punk-rock explosion that was engulfing Britain in the late `70s led by the Sex Pistols and the Clash. After teaming up with Tony Wilson's Factory label and with producer Martin Hannett, they released "Unknown Pleasures" in 1979. Little did they know that they were changing music forever.
The end result is an album that combines Albrecht's discordant punk guitar riffs with Curtis' ever-present brooding tension and monotone deep voice, that can be exhilarating at one moment and the voice of doom the next. The album's opener "Disorder" combines all of these, along with Morris' fast drumming and Hook's never-ending bass hooks. "I'm looking for a guy to take me by the hand" Curtis explains, rushed and almost carefree. The next track, "Day of the Lords" proves almost to be the complete opposite, where the drums have slowed down, the guitars are lower, and Curtis sings like the town crier announcing the end of the world.

Some of the songs on "Unknown Pleasure" have a slower pace rather than the frantic quality many other bands at the period had, which made Joy Division be labeled as "post-punk" to the British music press; the guitar, bass and drums could still surprise you with pounding riffs, but could also march along at much slower paces. But even in the slower songs, like "Candidate" or "New Dawn Fades," the instruments, despite being slower and quieter, echoed and give a general eerie and brooding feeling that might be distant but is still ever-present.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 14, 1999
Format: Audio CD
What happened to punk anyway? Didn't it used to mean something, back in the day when people believed in one last real rebellion, a handful of great bands changed music forever, and then it all sputtered out? We should mourn it, but then, it wasn't all bad that punk died. We got Joy Division at the funeral, after all.
In 1979, the original punk explosion's dying year and the year that post-punk, goth, and all of those other related genres began to emerge from the cacaphonous ooze, Ian Curtis and his band Joy Division came up with Unknown Pleasures, a dark proto-goth gem in dark times. From the raw, spooky-punk of "Disorder," "She's Lost Control," "Shadowplay(the reason I bought this and as good as anything Ian ever wrote)," and "Interzone" to the quieter, more eerie ruminations of "Day of the Lords" and "New Dawn Fades," this album fits the definition of a classic perfectly.
The whole album is incredibly stark, almost too stark on the first listen, just like the images of a barren wasteland it evokes. At the same time, a powerfully dark and morose atmosphere smothers the listener, leading him/her into the stygian depths of Curtis' own mind. Just as all great albums do, this one gains power with each listen. Some may call it a bit dated, but I call it timeless. RIP Ian. Too bad the world was too much for you. It was beautiful while it lasted.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By R. Tolbert on June 29, 2008
Format: MP3 Music
As a previous review has noted, track #7 (Shadowplay) is NOT the album version, remastered, as are all the other is a live version that has been previously released. This means that one of the group's most popular and influential tracks is missing and inexplicably replaced by an inferior live version. If you truly want the 2007 Collector's Edition, you'll need to buy this on CD. Other than that one key track, the rest of the download is fine.
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