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Closer (Collector's Edition)

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Chillier and more ethereal than the charred Unknown Pleasures, Joy Division's second and final studio album tore a jagged hole through post-punk convention, as dirges like "Atrocity Exhibition" rubbed elbows with manic, synth-streaked dance-floor cuts like "Isolation". Dripping with echo, Martin Hannett's production gleams like a freshly polished tombstone. Late frontman Ian Curtis is the music's aching centre of gravity, by turns unhinged, dejected and resigned. To hear the album is to mourn what might have been—and celebrate what was.

Biography

Formed: 1977 in Manchester, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '70s, '80s

Formed in the wake of the punk explosion in England, Joy Division became the first band in the post-punk movement by later emphasizing not anger and energy but mood and expression, pointing ahead to the rise of melancholy alternative music in the '80s. Though the group's raw initial sides fit the bill for any punk band, Joy Division later incorporated synthesizers (taboo in the low-tech world of '70s punk) and more haunting melodies, emphasized by the isolated, tortured lyrics of its lead vocalist,...
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