It's difficult to describe the jaw-dropping astonishment that came with the release of this, Joy Division's debut album, in 1979. That four Mancunian punks could create a work of such power, splendour and originality that would change pop music forever, well, a whole new genre had to be invented for them.
This had the honesty and passion of punk, but this was arty, angular, literary and unique; this was definitely post-punk, but the massive impact of this record saw Joy Division quickly transcend any pigeon-holing. With singer Ian Curtis documenting fear and alienation, and the band conjuring powerful, brooding rock that featured bass as a lead instrument, dischordant guitar and churning drums and percussion, an emotive group was turned into one of the greatest of all time by Martin Hannett's beautiful production.
This is bleak, heavy music, but it's also incredibly exhilarating. In Curtis's words and monotone vocals there's doom and drama, but you could never say this was an act; this is pure, naked emotion captured on tape. There's an intensity here that still shocks.
Joy Division - Unknown Pleasures
2. Day Of The Lords
5. New Dawn Fades
6. She's Lost Control
10. I Remember Nothing