Joy Division Central
Sign up Latest Topics

  Author   Comment  

Inside the line
Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #1 
Going through the discography here at JDC, I noticed a few discrepancies with what I had on file, mostly from Mark Johnson's book "An Ideal For Living" (henceforth abbreviated I4L), which I bought at the time of publication, 1984. So I compared the release dates with the few I have in the Post-Punk Diary (PPD) and Discogs.

The results point to some serious differences, and it's very hard to tell which might be correct, especially as sources are never given for this sort of thing.

Edited Aug 8 to add in the dates given by Deborah Curtis in Touching From a Distance (TFD). Edited Aug 21 to de-emphasise I4L as a source, since it relies on record inscriptions, known to be inaccurate. Edited 24 August to include data from "1 Top Class Manager" (TCM).

The most precise of any two values will be given priority. The date most likely to be correct is now in bold.


An Ideal For Living 7"
1978.06 Discogs + JDC + I4L + TFD

An Ideal For Living 12"
1978.09 JDC + TFD
1978.10 Discogs + I4L

Digital / Glass
1978.12.24 I4L
1979.01 TFD
1979.01.24 Discogs
1979.02.02 JDC

Unknown Pleasures
1979.06 Discogs + I4L + TFD
1979.07.20 JDC

Autosuggestion / From Safety To Where...?
1979 I4L
1979.10 Discogs
1979.10.12 JDC

Transmission 7"
1979.10 Discogs + I4L + TFD (Discogs does not give source for date)
1979.10 (late) TCM
1979.11.16 JDC (was reviewed in Sounds the next day)

Atmosphere / Dead Souls
1980.03 I4L + TFD
1980 Discogs

1980.04.18 I4L
1980.06 Discogs
1980.06.20 JDC

Love Will Tear Us Apart 7"
1980.04.18 I4L (can't be the same date as Komakino)
1980.06.27 Discogs + JDC + TFD

1980.07.18 PPD + Discogs + JDC
1980.07 I4L + TFD

Love Will Tear Us Apart 12"
1980.06.27 I4L
1980.08.15 Discogs + JDC

Atmosphere / She's Lost Control
1980.10.10 Discogs + JDC
1980.09.02 I4L

Transmission 12"
1980.09 TFD (this is the manufacturing date)
1980.12 Discogs
1980.12.09 I4L
1981.02.20 JDC

1981.10.08 Discogs + I4L
1981.10 JDC

Any help in determining the correct dates would be very welcome.

Avatar / Picture

In a Lonely Place
Posts: 3,384
Reply with quote  #2 they also list dates....maybe it can be of help,never had the tenacity of 'fighting' myself through endless dates.
.....wish I could remember exactly when and how I obtained it, but that's lost in the mists of time it seems. But I do remember I was happy to get it back then.....

Avatar / Picture

Posts: 1,211
Reply with quote  #3 

The dates are indeed confusing and, in September 2012, Mark Woodley researched the ones published on JDC by searching through contemporary copies of the NME and checking things like the date of first review as a new release and when they first appeared for sale by mail order from Rough Trade etc. He cross referenced this with other sources such as the narrative in TFAD to get what we think is the most accurate dates for when the records were actually released for sale.


Posts: 38
Reply with quote  #4 
The dates as stated in I4L are the dates as printed on the vinyl record labels (for LWTUA/Kom/Closer/Atmo, in any case). It's now widely known that those dates on the labels were not the actual release dates (though what they're <i>supposed</i> to indicate I'm not sure). This continues with 'Still' (labelled 1/8/81; actually released Oct or Nov 81) and Ceremony (7" and both 12"s are labelled 22/1/81; actually released 7" Mar 81, first 12" (? same?) and certainly the second 12" didn't come out until several months later).


Inside the line
Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #5 
Thanks for the help. I know well that the dates on the records are wrong, having bought some of them at the time! But I missed the fact that I4L was following these.

I appreciate that Mark Woodley went through a similar effort to my own to track down release dates. However, I know that review dates are not reliable, though useful for narrowing things down. I remember getting NME or MM and looking in vain for a review I expected, just to see how it compared with my own impression of a record. Sometimes the review would be printed a week or two late, especially at busy times. It's also true that journalists sometimes had advance copies, although they would not generally publish a review early.

I have great respect for crowd-sourced data, which has proven its worth. It has the benefit of being constantly error-checked. Discogs keeps a change log, where one can often find the source of an edit. That is very helpful from an archivist point of view. However, if this info is not present, I become suspicious.

For example, I notice that "A Factory Sample" now has this information, from a Factory letter: "Originally intended for release in December 1978, this was actually released in two batches: 1000 copies on 24th January 1979 and 4000 copies on 1st March 1979." The previous info was from Mick Middles "Factory" book and said "January and February 1979". So I'd be keen on accepting the new precise dates as truth, especially as no other source is contradictory.

I have edited the original post, based on my more recent research and the provided help. I am now comfortable about the dates in bold. However this is not to say that they are all watertight.

Consider the Transmission 7". Several sources listed agree on October 1979, although Discogs does not give the source for their date. Wikipedia takes its info from Discogs. Joy Division Data and World in Motion give no sources, and so likely copy from one of these, as many do. John Cooper's Cerysmatic Factory is more likely to get data from the horse's mouth, but as no reference is given, no assumptions can be made. The fact that all of these are in agreement does not make it any more likely to be true.

JDC is the sole source to disagree, stating November 16. I am guessing that this is because it was reviewed in Sounds the next day.

Regardless of which way that works out, there are four other releases where JDC seems to be incorrect about the release date. Likely because more information is now extant than there was when the discography was put together.I trust that my work will be instrumental in bringing this site in alignment with the best possible research.

If anyone has a promo sheet or letter from Factory that states the "Transmission" single release date, I'd be very interested. Likewise any other primary source for information. (Though Factory is hardly reliable on this count.)

New Dawn Fades
Posts: 371
Reply with quote  #6 
Great topic, one of great interest to me, too!

One source not mentioned in this thread so far is "1 Top Class Manager", the publication of Rob Gretton's notebooks. Don't you have this at hand?

Curiously, re: the Transmission 7" release date, there is not a single separate document or entry about it in the book. The only explicit note is on p. 50 in the general 1979 chronology, where it is said that the single was released "at some point in October '79".
There is some further circumstantial evidence, though:
- p. 111 has notes that definitely predate the Something Else performance and so date from early September at the latest; item 8 in the list on the third page reproduced simply says "Transmission/Novelty"
- p. 114 second page reproduced, from 2nd half of September: a note about "Island Deal - Transmission" and "xxxxx How many?" (where I cannot read xxxxx) 
- p. 116 second page, from late September: "Records - Albums !!!!! Singles? - Test Pressing" (plus note "Did he sratch")
- p. 120 from early October: "Contract for Transmission?"
- p. 124 from early November:  " * Deliver Singles "
- p. 139 from late November/early December: list of questions to put to Tony Wilson, including: "How many singles sold? Find out how many albums left - repressing?"

The date of November 16/17 indeed, probably, derives from the first review in one of the music papers; it also features in George Gimarc's Punk Diary (a book from 2005) which clearly is based on an exhaustive excerpting from the contemporary music press between 1970 and 1982.

In short, I'm inclined to stick with the traditional release date of late October '79 for Transmission.

Inside the line
Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #7 
I actually don't have Rob Gretton's notebooks... with so many interests, this slipped through my net. Thanks so much for your exhaustive trawling through that source. I too am inclined to think the issue of "Transmission" has been put to bed.

This means that there are several dates that should be corrected on this site:

"A Factory Sample" from 1979.02.02 to 1979.01.24
Unknown Pleasures from 1979.07.20 to 1979.06
"Transmission" 7" from 1979.11.16 to 1979.10 (late)
"Transmission" 12" from 1981.02.20 to 1980.12.09
from 1981.10 to 1981.10.08

Inside the line
Posts: 6
Reply with quote  #8 
Now I do have Rob Gretton's notebooks. Arrived today.

Just a note that copies are still available from the publisher!

Immediate Edit:

They are sold out. I must have got the last one!
Previous Topic | Next Topic

Quick Navigation:

Easily create a Forum Website with Website Toolbox.