When Peter Hook spoke with us earlier this year, he was spruiking a tour of Australia in which he was to play Joy Division’s seminal debut record, “Unknown Pleasures”, in its entirety. Bernard Sumner and Stephen Morris, the Joy Division bandmates who, along with Hook, survived Ian Curtis after the iconic frontman tragically hanged himself in 1980, and who would go on to form New Order with Hook later that year, were not to take part. It cuts a strange, almost unsettling chapter in the history of Manchester’s beloved and much mythologized quartet. But if a Joy Division tour featuring but one of three surviving members was considered opportunistic, bordering on sacrilegious – this latest development is tantamount to grave robbing.
According to Slicing Up Eyeballs Hook is currently working on a 4-song EP of re-recorded Joy Division songs (gasp). The bassist will work with his band The Light and former Happy Mondays singer Rowetta, who Hook claims, conceived the project: “She wants us to record an EP of the four [Joy Division songs] that she sings, which are “Insight,” “New Dawn Fades,” “Atmosphere” and a track called “Pictures” that I finished up, which is an old Joy Division track,” he said.
Below is a recent performance of “Transmission” taken from the Sydney leg of Hook’s “Unknown Pleasures” tour. Mixed feeling will ensue.