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Interview:
New Order classics are safe in Peter Hook's hands
 

By GARY GRAFF
Digital First Media, @GraffonMusic

» See more SOUND CHECK

Peter Hook is explicitly at odds with his former bandmates in New Order -- and that's putting it politely -- but the bassist and singer does acknowledge that they've in some ways made it easier for him to ply his particular craft these days.

Since 2010 Hook and his band The Light have been on the road playing entire albums, first by New Order's predecessor Joy Division, and now from the New Order catalog. This year he's taking on 1985's "Low-Life" and 1986's "Brotherhood," and it helps that he's the only one paying due diligence to this music, despite the presence of band Hook refers to as "New Odor."

"I'm really enjoying this," says Hook, 58. "It's been great celebrating (the music) and people have really cottoned on. The great thing is we weren't pretending to be Joy Division, and we're not pretending to be New Order, and I think people take it in the way it's intended.

"And it's seemed quite natural to move through New Order because most of this older material has been completely ignored by New Order for 20-odd years, even by the Fraud Order in their new Frankenstein incarnation. So people are really happy to hear it."

And, Hook notes, it's win-win -- somewhat -- for those fans. "They really are in a good position where they get me playing all the old stuff and them playing the hits over and over and over again," he explains. "If you're a fan, I really don't think you can for much more."

Hook -- who's in court with the other band members over ownership and use of the name -- has yet to document any of his Joy Division or New Order performances, which include B-sides and unreleased singles from the appropriate period. But he may well do so during a three-night stand Dec. 9-10 back in the U.K. when he plans to play all six albums he's recreated so far. He's also writing his third book, taking on New Order after previous volumes about Joy Division and the Manchester music scene of the late 70s and 80s. And he promises it will be more spot-on than he considers current New Order frontman BErnard Sumner's recently published "Chapter and Verse."

"Yeah, Bernard has very kindly done me a favor by writing such a s*** New Order book," says Hook, who hopes to put his book out next year. "I can't believe anyone would be so obsessed and full of hate for someone else that they would compromise a book on their life's work and make it so petty and bitter and wrong.

"So he left it wide open; I'd have been devastated if he'd have done a great New Order book 'cause I wouldn't have known what to do."

Peter Hook & The Light

Thursday, Nov. 13. Doors open at 8 p.m.

The Magic Bag, 22920 Woodward Ave., Ferndale.

Tickets are $30.

Call 248-544-3030 or visit www.themagicbag.com.

Web Site: www.themagicbag.com

Send your thoughts and comments to Gary Graff

 



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