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In a Lonely Place
Posts: 1,573
Reply with quote  #1 
Managed to get this as a download off the Cherry Red Records website - this is apparently the first time the rest of Joy Division were in the studio after Ian's death - the recording took place in June 1980. 

The story goes Tony Wilson had a whim to have Kevin Hewick as the new lead singer of the band, so he roped them in to back Hewick on this song (which I believe Hewick wrote).

It also says on the site that this was recorded at Graveyard Studios and produced by Martin Hannett, but the production seems unfinished - and in one case - downright flawed - so I'm wondering if the production was dead in the water before Hannett was ready to ply his post-production techniques.

Funnily enough, if I listened to it without knowing who it was, I'd have said it was a tenth-rate JD backing band with a singer who is trying too hard to express himself and looking like a bit of a tit in the process.

Anyone else heard this? Any further light to be shed on this story?

"I Still Can't Hear Meself"

Inside the line
Posts: 11
Reply with quote  #2 

I did read that all parties concerned weren't exactly happy about having to do the session. Kevin Hewick didn't like the limelight and the pressure he felt put under, and the band resented Wilson's idea of essentially auditioning replacement singers. If memory serves me correctly Barney sabotaged the session by playing Buzzcocks riffs instead of the songs Hewick had written. Not Tony Wilson's finest idea.


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You’re No Good For Me
Posts: 91
Reply with quote  #3 

more info at on the page kevin hewick and new order including mention of another song recorded at the same session which hasn't seen the light of day

Everything is kept inside... Take a chance and step outside. Lose some sleep and say you tried.

Inside the line
Posts: 11
Reply with quote  #4 
Good find. The article (knew I'd read it before!) says.....


around june 1980 (just over a month after ian curtis' suicide), hewick was booked to go into graveyard studios (famous for a certain ratio's marvellous "graveyard and the ballroom" cassette) to record 5 tracks for the planned double 10" (which later became the aforementioned "factory quartet").   the night before, tony wilson phoned hewick and suggested that "the jds" go into the studio to back him.   wilson told hewick that the jds wanted to carry on as a band and playing someone else's material would ease their transition back into recording.

no one ever told hewick that this might have been a try-out session for a lead singer of the soon-to-be new order.   much later, when terry christian suggested the idea on a bbc radio derby interview in 1983, hewick was hurt enough to be unable to go to a new order gig for quite some time afterwards.   "well you're a better singer than any of them aren't you?" said christian.   the rumour would appear to be substantiated in the liner notes to "from brussels with love", although hewick maintains it was not the case.

to quote kevin: "i was picked up at piccadilly station by bernard and stephen in a really old car.   they were really friendly, good humoured and i soon felt at ease - for a while--- forgive my memory but i seem to recall it was only on arriving at graveyard that i was told that martin hannett was going to produce the session!   at last i met peter hook who privately i held in most fanlike awe - he soon came over as the one who took the lead with things, who pulled things together into shape.   we worked on two songs "haystack" and "a piece of fate".   it was decided to do "haystack" first."

the resulting song, "haystack," a stalwart of hewick's live set, appears on the "from brussels with love" compilation on les disques du crepuscule (cd, cassette, and lp formats).   the recording suffers from a complete and utter lack of production.   kevin indicates that this was the result of hannett showing up halfway through the session, pronouncing that the assembled group of musicians (hewick, bernard, peter, and steven) sounded like "fairport convention" [ouch!] and curling up under the mixing desk for a bit of a sleep.    hewick was told hannett was exhausted from working through the night on a john cooper clarke recording session.   he remembers hannett leaving before the end and doubts whether hannett actually twiddled and knobs on this recording at all!

the assembled "backing" band told the engineer at the beginning of the session that they'd decided to call themselves "new order".   when hewick pointed out that rob asheton (former member of the stooges) had formed a band called the new order, a clearly annoyed bernard shot back "only you would know that."

the song

the song is inspired by a scene with jack lemmon and lee remick in "the days of wine and roses", with loads of heroin addiction imagery (which i can't even believe i missed in favour of a sexual interpretation!).   hook's bass rumbles along, bernard knocks away at the polyphonic synths, stevie bangs the drums, and hewick delivers a langorously lounge-y vocal performance and plays guitar.   he doesn't sound nearly as nervous as he must've been, although the beauty of his voice fails to show through.

the "other" song

the assembled band worked on a second song that has never seen the light of day.   "a piece of fate" was the track - later reworked by hewick into a song called "no miracle" in 1993.   hewick, who was utterly in awe of the backing band assembled for his humble session, pointed out to bernard that the two note guitar solo he was playing was from buzzcock's "boredom" and was stunned when bernard, threw his gibson sg down on the floor and stormed out.   this so unnerved hewick that he was unable to complete any other songs for the session.   wilson, still wanting to feature the young kevin on a factory record, replaced the session with the live tracks on the factory quartet.   all in all, not an auspicious recording for the young lad's first "professional" recording session, but a story for the grandkids!   

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