Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division

Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division

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by Peter Hook
     
 

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In Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division, Peter Hook, bassist for the legendary, groundbreaking band Joy Division, takes readers backstage with the group that helped define the sound of a generation and influenced artists such as U2, Radiohead, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Unlike other books about Joy Division, Factory Records, or lead singer Ian

Overview

In Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division, Peter Hook, bassist for the legendary, groundbreaking band Joy Division, takes readers backstage with the group that helped define the sound of a generation and influenced artists such as U2, Radiohead, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Unlike other books about Joy Division, Factory Records, or lead singer Ian Curtis—who took his own life just before the band's first U.S. Tour—Unknown Pleasures tells Joy Division's story from the unique perspective of one of the three surviving band members.

Told with surprising humor and vivid detail, Unknown Pleasures is the book Joy Division fans have been waiting for.

Editorial Reviews

Rock Cellar Magazine
“A tiny gem written by a monster musician. It’s the best document yet to be produced on Joy Division. There’s nothing like hearing the story straight from Hooky’s foul mouth.”
Metro London
“It’s a window like no other into the reality of life in this most aloof of bands.”
GQ (UK)
“An immense account of Joy Division’s rise, cataloguing the group’s struggle for recognition, their rapidly gained superiority on the Manchester scene and the epic numbness following Ian Curtis’ shock suicide. Having read Hook’s book, you’ll feel like you were he fifth member of the band.”
Los Angeles Times
“Honest, punchy, and rough-hewn . . . a portal into a vivid moment in rock history . . . the life and times of a working band . . . and, in the middle of it all, the transformative power of music.”
A.V. Club
. The passages where Hook details the recording of the Unknown Pleasures album are fantastic and insightful . . . . the book itself is gorgeous. . .
Entertainment Weekly
“A surprisingly funny-and gleefully profane-portrait.”
LA Weekly
“Rich in detail.”
Cincinnati City Beat
“A comprehensive, illuminating portrait of the band that often takes the piss out of its doom-ridden legacy.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“Intimate.”
MTV Hive
“Like talking to a bawdy uncle after his fourth beer. Apparently being in the saddest post-punk art-goth band in history can occasionally be pretty fucking funny.”
SF Weekly
With Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division fans can finally hear the band’s story from someone who was there from the very beginning-iconic bassist Peter Hook.”
Keith Cameron
The most colorful and intimate account of Joy Division ever written . . . Hook evokes the spirit of the age with a bluff authenticity that no outsider could hope to emulate…explaining the creation of his band’s remarkable music with all the passion and insight it deserves.
Ian Harrison
“A bittersweet, profanity-filled recollection of their brief existence . . . recalled with Hook’s winning Manc gallows humor . . . If you like Joy Division you really have to read it.”
Simon Reynolds
“Vivid, funny, and unexpectedly touching, Peter Hook’s memoir strips away the shroud of myth surrounding Joy Division to offer a refreshingly gritty perspective on the story of four ordinary young men who together made extraordinary music.”
Neda Ulaby
You don’t have to be a hardcore fan of Joy Division or New Order to appreciate Hook’s wry evocation of Britain’s 1970s punk scene and his street-level remembrance of the tragedy and ecstasy . . . that went into building the foundation for the next few decades’ alternative rock scene.
NPR
An NPR Best Book of 2013
Spin
A SPIN Best Music Book of 2013
The Washington Post - Justin Moyer
…in Unknown Pleasures Hook wrestles with Joy Division's failure to recognize the obvious: that the sick young man singing songs center stage about death was actually ready to die. It's compelling.
Publishers Weekly
One of the progenitors of what became alternative rock, Joy Division pioneered a sound that would reverberate for decades, inspiring a litany of bands in its wake. The recording career of the band was tragically cut short by the suicide of lead singer Ian Curtis . Founding member and bassist Peter Hook recounts the history of Joy Division, offering insight, righting wrongs, and separating fact from fiction. Hook is humble and affable (he's the first to admit he's not the world's greatest bass player), and his tone is more like that of a lengthy discussion with a pal at the pub, rather than a studied, academic assessment of the band and its legacy. This warts-and-all approach results in a warm, occasionally melancholy reminiscence, as Hook discusses the band's process, as well as its members' willful ignorance of Curtis's declining mental state. While the book ends on a sad note, Hook's fond recollection of various moments in Joy Division's short life, such as meeting a young U2, wrestling with a temperamental van on early tours, and a track-by-track commentary on the band's albums (he recommends readers put on the album in question when reading about Closer and Unknown Pleasures) will likely give readers a deeper appreciation for the people behind the music. Hook has written one of the warmest, most honest musical memoirs in recent memory. Agent: Matthew Elblonk of DeFiore & Co. (Feb.)
Kirkus Reviews
The propulsive bass guitarist for Joy Division puts his fingers on the beating pulse of one of the U.K.'s most influential bands. After the cinematic portrayals of the band's tragic central figure Ian Curtis in the films 24 Hour Party People and Control, it's easy to lose track of their central influences. In an unflinchingly honest memoir, Hook (The Hacienda: How Not to Run a Club, 2009) peels away the romantic sheen colored by its dark history and gives unfettered insight into the band's origins and inspirations, as well as its comedies and tragedies. From Hook's first vision of the Sex Pistols, the young musician-to-be was hooked. After recruiting mates Bernard Sumner and Stephen Morris, they sought out the sensitive, artistic Curtis to lead them forward. Hook captures his lead singer well: "A poetic, sensitive, tortured soul, the Ian Curtis of the myth--he was definitely that. But he could also be one of the lads--he was one of the lads, as far as we were concerned." What the author does even better is to remember the whole outrageous scene, from the tabloid outcry over the band's murky name to the explosive shows dominated by bands like The Clash and Throbbing Gristle. Even the expected recollection of writing "Love Will Tear Us Apart" comes with decidedly unexpected truths. From the manifold perils of life on the road to his ongoing guilt over the band's treatment of Curtis, Hook never pulls a punch. Add in a comprehensive timeline and track-by-track notes on the band's two sole albums, and this is required reading for anyone who ever felt moved by Joy Division's cold, dark music. Electric transmissions from a bygone era, etched in blood by someone who was there in body and spirit.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062222572
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
12/03/2013
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
480,008
Product dimensions:
5.60(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.20(d)

What People are saying about this

Simon Reynolds

“Vivid, funny, and unexpectedly touching, Peter Hook’s memoir strips away the shroud of myth surrounding Joy Division to offer a refreshingly gritty perspective on the story of four ordinary young men who together made extraordinary music.”

Ian Harrison

“A bittersweet, profanity-filled recollection of their brief existence . . . recalled with Hook’s winning Manc gallows humor . . . If you like Joy Division you really have to read it.”

Keith Cameron

The most colorful and intimate account of Joy Division ever written . . . Hook evokes the spirit of the age with a bluff authenticity that no outsider could hope to emulate…explaining the creation of his band’s remarkable music with all the passion and insight it deserves.

Meet the Author

As cofounder of Joy Division and New Order, Peter Hook has been shaping the course of popular music for more than thirty years. He provided the propulsive bass guitar melodies on "Love Will Tear Us Apart" and the bestselling twelve-inch single of all time, "Blue Monday," among many other songs. He tours New Order and Joy Division albums with his band Peter Hook and The Light and DJs internationally, including at the numerous regular Haçienda nights at clubs around the world. The author of the New York Times bestseller Unknown Pleasures, he lives in Cheshire, England, with his family.

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Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Sensitivemuse More than 1 year ago
Okay. Two reasons why I requested this book for review. 1. The hombre loves Joy Division. and 2. I wanted to know more about the band. Now I’m not a fan. Yes, I listen to a few of the songs when the hombre plays them (I must say, he still has the CD set of Heart and Soul that I bought him as a gift years ago - which makes me all warm and fuzzy because I got him something that he loves and still listens to..anyway! I’m going off topic here....) I thought the book was pretty good - now I completely understand a fan would greatly appreciate this book as it gives you an insight on how the band was. I liked the way it was written, it was to the point, and at some times really blunt. I found myself laughing at bits of it. Gradually as the book progresses though, it does get more serious and more sad - since you know what’s going to happen to Ian Curtis and although he was undergoing serious health issues they just kept going. It’s admirable because they went through a lot of struggle in the beginning, but they persisted (it’s also extremely difficult to be successful as a rock band as I learnt while reading through this book) The book also includes a more detailed description on each track the band has made which I believe fans will greatly appreciate and lots of references to other bands they have met, toured with, and sometimes fought with (hah, those were funny parts). It was also interesting to see how Hook describes Ian Curtis during their tour stops. (He can be just one of the guys too - which was hard for me to see) You also had to sympathize for him and his struggle with epilepsy. Hook’s narrative is very good and easy to follow and above all very entertaining. Fans will greatly appreciate this book, non fans wanting to read how a real (yes I say REAL) band works should pick this up to get a glimpse at how hard it really is (no seriously, it’s really hard and not as easy as you think!) also, nice small appearances from The Cure and Bono!!!!
Rita619 More than 1 year ago
A must have for all the fans of Joy Division. Peter Hook (bass guitarist of the Joy Division and New Order) writes very well. His book is informative and fun to read. I hope he writes another book about New Order. I'll buy it, if he does:).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A tragicomic excellent read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago