Peter Hook shines with The Light in stunning show at Albert Hall

The legendary bassist and his band treated fans to a mix of classic tracks from Joy Division and New Order, performing Unknown Pleasures and Movement in full. 
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It marks the start of a three-night residency where they will explore the immense back catalogue of Joy Division and New Order’s tracks in the wonderful settings of the Albert Hall.

With an impressive stage setup and Hook’s trademark stage presence, the show was a true celebration of a genre-defining era of music.

Just a stone’s throw away from where the band were first conceived at the Free Trade Hall as Peter Hook and Bernard Sumner watched in awe as the Sex Pistols kickstarted a musical revolution in the city, it’s the perfect setting for what’s about to unfold.

The concert opened with “No Love Lost,” which set the tone for the night ahead.

The song’s haunting melody is a perfect introduction to Joy Division’s dark and brooding sound.

“Disorder” followed, with Hook’s bass taking centre stage.

The song’s frenetic energy was balanced by raw and emotional vocals, creating a sense of urgency that would continue throughout the set.

“Day of the Lords” was next, ripped apart by searing guitar riffs.

The song’s apocalyptic imagery was underscored by anguished vocals, which captured the sense of despair and uncertainty that characterised much of Joy Division’s work.

“Candidate” was a stand out amongst many stand outs, with its urgent rhythm pushing the song forward.

The lyrics, which deal with the dark side of politics and power, were particularly relevant in today’s world, giving the song a sense of immediacy that resonated with the audience.

Next up was “Insight”, the song’s sparse instrumentation pushing together vulnerability and strength in equal measure.

“New Dawn Fades” was a particularly strong moment in the set, with its epic guitar riffs and sweeping tune creating a sense of grandeur and majesty.

“She’s Lost Control” blew the roof off, with its intense rhythm and hypnotic beat capturing the energy and urgency of Joy Division’s best work.

The song retains the power it had on its release in 1979, anxious and brooding, creating a tumult of emotion amongst the receptive crowd who were loving every minute.

All photo credit to Scott Gouldsbrough

The song’s lyrics, which deal with the theme of control and loss of agency, were delivered with raw emotion by Hooky, making the song a big statement of defiance and resistance.

Then followed a brilliant rendition of “Shadowplay”, with its dark and brooding atmosphere perfectly capturing a sense of alienation and despair.

“Wilderness” was an atmospheric track, with its eerie line and sparse instrumentation creating a sense of isolation and loneliness.

The song’s lyrics, which deal with the theme of alienation and the search for meaning, were delivered with emotional intensity by Hooky, making the song an affecting moment in the set.

“Interzone” was a frenetic and intense track, with its pulsating rhythm and jagged guitar riffs capturing the energy and urgency of Joy Division’s sound.

The song’s lyrics, which deal with the theme of escape and the desire for freedom, were delivered with passion and intensity, making the song a  statement of rebellion and defiance.

“I Remember Nothing” closed out the first half of the set, with its brooding atmosphere and melody creating a sense of darkness and despair.

Hook’s bass line once again provided a solid foundation for the song’s searing guitar riffs and raw and emotional vocals, making it a fitting end to a stunning tribute to Joy Division’s classic album.

A short intermission built up the tension and excitement, as the band would be back to play New Order’s first record, Movement.

“Movement,” marked the beginning of a new chapter for the members of Joy Division, who formed the band shortly after the suicide of lead singer Ian Curtis.

The album represents a transitional period for New Order, as they moved away from the dark and brooding sound of Joy Division and began to experiment with new musical styles and technologies.

The album features a mix of electronic and guitar-driven tracks, with a greater emphasis on dance rhythms and synthesisers than their previous work.

While “Movement” received mixed reviews upon its initial release, it has since been recognised as an important and influential album in the post-punk and new-wave movements.

It laid the groundwork for the band’s subsequent albums, which would see them become one of the most successful and innovative bands of the 1980s and beyond.

“Procession” kicked things off with its pumping beat and atmospheric guitar work, setting the tone for the rest of the album.

“Dreams Never End” followed, with its catchy tune and signature bassline,  got the crowd moving and singing along.

It was one of the highlights of the set, in a set list filled with gems.

“Truth” slowed things down a bit, with its dreamy, almost hypnotic sound, but “Senses” picked up the pace again, with its pulsing beat and chilling vocals.

“Chosen Time” was another highlight, with its intense rhythm and intricate guitar work, which got the crowd dancing and jumping along. “ICB” was another fan favourite, with its catchy chorus and dark, brooding lyrics.

“The Him” showcased the band’s musical prowess with its intense range of instrumentation.

“Doubts Even Here” was another slower, more introspective track, featuring intricate guitar work.

Finally, “Denial” closed out the album on a high note, with its catchy chorus, leaving the crowd wanting more.

Obviously, the encore was going to be something special.

When you’ve got such iconic two albums to work with, you’re going to blow the roof off. And the band didn’t disappoint.

As soon as the band finished their last song and walked offstage, the crowd erupted into a frenzied roar, demanding more.

And boy, they deliver.

The opening notes of “Atmosphere” rang out, instantly recognisable and sending shivers down the spines of everyone in the room.

The plaintive vocals were a perfect fit for the mood, as the audience swayed and sang along with every word.

But the mood quickly shifted with the vigorous beat of “Digital.”

The energy in the room was electric as the band tore through the song, Hook’s bass line pulsing through the speakers and the crowd bouncing in time.

“Transmission” was up next, and the room exploded with energy once again.

The iconic riff and pounding drums had everyone jumping and shouting along, lost in the music and the moment.

But the band wasn’t done yet. “Ceremony” was a surprise addition to the setlist, and the fans went wild. The bittersweet lyrics and soaring guitar lines were a perfect tribute to the band’s past, and the audience sang along with every word.

As the intro to “Love Will Tear Us Apart” began, the crowd was practically foaming at the mouth with anticipation.

The mournful wailing of the synthesiser set the mood perfectly, and the audience sang the chorus like it was their last night on earth.

Despite being listed, the band did not play Blue Monday. A crowd keen for it hung around till the lights turned off, but unfortunately, the band didn’t re-appear after Love Will Tear Us Apart.

But to be fair, that’s not a bad number to finish on, is it?

Most tickets are sold out, but you might be able to get one of the nights by clicking here.

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