A Book & A Beer – This Searing Light, the Sun and Everything Else

It is strange to go back in time and behind the scenes of the musicians that created part of the soundtrack of your teenage years. You sometimes lose the luster of the music to details of private lives. I was a big New Order fan, still am of a range of their music but I did not know how they came to be, their origin story as it were. I got into a slice of Joy Division music and now after the movie Control and the book above, I know more about the people who created the music.

This is not a regular historical account of the Ian Curtis years. It is an oral history arranged in chronological order. All the people involved in the story have their say and you bounce from Bernard (Barney), Peter (Hooky) and Stephen (just Stephen) as the main protagonists as well as the roadies, the manager, the wives and girlfriends and music reviews.

This oral history style is popular on websites talking about films and TV and works to an extent here but I do wish there was more historical data in-between to add some context to the matter. But as a piece of the record (pun intended), it does add to the knowledge base of the band.

I have three ideas as to what to drink with this book. First, find some British cask ale and immerse yourself in Manchester of the late 1970’s. Yorkshire Square and MacLeod’s would be the L.A. options.

Second there is an anecdote in the book about drinking Duvel so that would work and probably get you in the mindset of the devil. And lastly, the new Leaves of Grass series from Bell’s would provide the needed poetry that great music has when it is really working.