You could always spot Peter Hook in New Order by his low-slung bass and trademark rock swagger in a sea of dance. Torn apart from his old bandmates (“them lot”), he now spotlights his own trademark Manchester slyness.
Two years ago, Hooky and his new machine the Light replayed the entire back catalog of his first band and first love, Joy Division, as a tribute to Ian Curtis.
“I thought it would be a one-off gig at the Factory in Manchester, and we’d never play it again,” he admits. “We sold out two nights, and got requests to play it all ’round the world.”
Two years on, the Light takes on New Order’s back catalog, starting on this tour with 1981’s Movement, and 1983’s Power, Corruption & Lies.
“I may as well carry on and just play literally every record I’ve ever made before I retire, or shuffle off this mortal coil and go and join Ian,” chuckles Hook on the line from Majorca.
So, how does the 57-year-old bassist revive the songs of his youth?
“Very nervously,” he laughs. “There’s a few songs on Power, Corruption & Lies that have never been played live.”
He’s even playing all the B-sides from that era since he’s in open rebellion against “New Odour and their just-the-hits” set lists.
“That used to bore the arse off me,” exclaims Hook. “They would never go back to any of the old stuff, which I thought was wonderful. And we did sell rather a lot of the records, so I take it that somebody else must have thought they were good, too.”– Richard Whittaker