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Joy Division – Heart and Soul

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Joy Division – Heart and Soul

It is 18th May 2015; 35 years since the suicide of Joy Division’s writer and front man, Ian Curtis. Despite only two Studio albums, there are 12 compilation albums of singles, B-sides and EPs released under the Joy Division name. We’ll discuss one of these 12; a unique box set named Heart and Soul.

A brief on Joy Division

Joy Division were a short-lived British post-punk band with a strong cult following. Active between 1977 and 1980, Joy Division released two studio albums (Closer and Unknown Pleasures). After Curtis’ death the remaining members of Joy Division formed the band New Order. There are many publications on Joy Divison and Ian Curtis, for example So This is Permanence; a collection of Curtis’ handwritten lyrics and journal pages and the feature film biopic Control (2007). The music of Joy Division can be split into two categories; the widely recognised studio albums and the vast collections of compilations. The studio albums generally consist of slow tempo, emotional tracks with clean production; very much post-punk. The singles range from the previously mentioned style to faster tempo, lower production, with some elements of punk as opposed to the emotional, wave-style of the studio albums. The music of Joy Division is quite deceptive, as what many believe Joy Division to be is simply the outer skin of a much deeper, expansive being. It is because of this aspect of Joy Division that they are a favourite for music collectors and enthusiasts alike.

What is Heart and Soul?

Heart and Soul is a unique comprehensive box set as it collects the studio albums, B-sides, EPs and live recordings in one Box set. Heart and Soul cites the source from which the audio was retrieved, for example the 1980 12” vinyl or the Substance compilation album 1988. Heart and Soul also features live material recorded at Manchester, Bournemouth and London plus additional sessions for Piccadilly Radio and Genetic Records. The missing songs/recordings can be found in a list on wikipedia.

Furthermore, Heart and Soul features a paperback booklet of photography, Paul Morley’s incomplete manuscript, concert reviews, complete discography and lyrics collection. This collection, whilst not truly expansive, is a very solid box set and a quick way to obtain close to everything Joy Division recorded.