right after being sprung from being locked away for a year, i had a horrible job screen printing in allston. people used to regularly pass out from the chemicals we used, all of which were stored in the basement in the 'green room'. it was just a cave painted green - made of really thick layers of brick because they were always thinking all the shit would just combust one day and blow the entire plant up. concentrating the fumes in one small closed space- brilliant.
i was always about one or two thoughts away from being re-committed . i was saved by a friend at work. we used to get blind drunk and go to shows. all the infamous boston rock clubs like the channel were still open. the orpheum would have an amazing show every damn week it seemed. the smiths, the cocteau twins, the meat puppets, the minutemen, pylon. and we'd spend hours making fucked up tapes for each other with 60's garage bands, led zeppelin , PIL, hüsker dü, and new order. before going into the channel we'd throw rocks at any boats that would pass by. music and severely anti-social behavior is all that kept me from destroying myself and not coming back again from the ashes.
i was completely beholden to new order's instrumental version of "confusion". it was dance music at last specifically for my generation. machines taken to task by no less than what was left of joy division. gothic punk rock disco.
i must admit i am really bad at shows now- i am fidgety and slightly bored. this became so after i became more involved with dance music rather than the punk rock show- around this time of sniffing chemical fumes than running off to listen to machine music. it was and still is the participation aspect. if i can't or don't feel compelled to dance i am no longer all that interested or involved.
i can't get with the gods that do not, will not dance.it's about the only thing the hippies got right- music is primarily for dancing not standing there like a road cone staring at other humans slack jawed.
1985/86 was an absolutely stunning time for this sort of music. i would go out and dance for 2 hours straight.( thank you linda lawrence of the 1270.).it was like a crazy white hot love affair with the music. when i am all bitchy now about going out know that it's because i'm searching for this feeling again and it's just not possible. it can't be forced.
a few years later when i started djing and this music had gone more mainstream in america, i was always puzzled that the most requested new order song was"bizzare love triangle".it became a bad dj joke- if no one was dancing whip out ye olde 'bizarre love triangle', the song of dj desperation. "blue monday" is the biggest selling 12 inch single of all time and a better song in my view. but for me "perfect kiss" was it. no other song so captures that point in time for me. it is absolutely the most perfectly crafted and put together dance song ever. i see no point in remixing it- it fucking purrs through it's many time changes effortlessly. and this was no easy feat on the part of new order. they used the many highly flawed and temperamental synths and sequencers of the day. on tour they had to travel with several of each machine and soldering irons. when they switched to newer more dependable equipment they were unable to recreate 'perfect kiss' live as it was originally created with the floppy disc driven EMU emulators. they therefore dropped the song from their sets.
this video was recorded live in the studio by the guy who directed 'silence of the lambs'. i was really touched by one of the youtube comments:
"Everytime I hear Perfect Kiss I just want to cry."
i feel exactly the same way.
at around 5:47 is the sound of croaking frogs. on vinyl versions of the song there's a sheep bleating at the end.