Friday, August 10, 2012

12 March 1983: Recreation Centre, Tolworth

New Order
Recreation Centre, Tolworth, UK
12 March 1983

source: soundboard
lineage: second generation dub
analogloyalist mastering August 2012

This gig, while not a "stash" tape, for all intents should be.  It's classic New Order, raw, with one of the band's greatest in-jokes included.  It's also terrifically difficult to find in good quality, for some reason.
It's said that the speed this soundboard set made it to the Camden market stalls, after the gig, was ridiculously fast.  One longstanding rumor - and knowing the nature of the parties involved, probably more than rumor - is that manager Rob Gretton quietly leaked the soundboard tape immediately after the gig, to cause further embarrassment to journalist/writer Mark Johnson.  Johnson had been stalking the group for some time at this point, trying to write the ultimate trainspottery tome about Joy Division and New Order (An Ideal For Living), an effort that would find him - according to wags - cornering some poor band member backstage with ridiculous questions along the lines of "now did you play "Song X" in Buttfuckshire, October 1978 or not?!?" among other acts of sillyness.  In retaliation, the band arranged to have Johnson's scooter - for he had been in attendance at this gig - strung up from a forklift, blocking the band's truck, and then had the promoter come on-stage mid set with the following legendary quip:

"Sorry to interrupt you here but we got a very important announcement here. There's someone who owns a scooter, SMG643Y, that's SMG 6 4 3 Y, now if they can go and remove it, because it's causing obstruction to one of the trucks. Thanks a lot, and don't spit at me."

The gig is full of little Hooky/Barneyisms too, one of the better collections of them I must say:

Hooky (before In A Lonely Place): "This is the brass section. If the Jam can do it, I'm sure we can."
Bernard (introducing Age Of Consent): "This one's a fast one for all you bollock brains."
Hooky: "You shouldn't swear, there are several big blokes here that'll RIP YER FUCKING 'EAD OFF!"
Bernard (introducing the final encore):  "Listen, we've only come back on because the door's jammed and we can't get out."

I think one would be hard-pressed to find a better performance of "Dreams Never End" than this gig.  It is, in a word, superb.

This set came to me as a CD-R of a 2nd generation tape.  It was dull, noisy, and just screamed for help.  I first worked on it in 2005 or thereabouts, and set it out on Dime at the time.  Listening to it now, I cringe and sincerely apologize for subjecting folks to it.  It sounds completely amateur in terms of "mastering".

Not so this version.  In fact they couldn't be any more different than night/day.  I used a LOT of tools in my toolbox on this one, this time, but it needed it to be more than just something you'd listen to once, say "eh, that's cool" and file it away. 

There are only a couple niggly bits about the tape; "Blue Monday" starts out a bit uneven, but it's more than likely just to be old tape as much as anything.  There's a pretty significant dropout in the right channel for a decent chunk of "Everything's Gone Green", but all known copies of this gig have this problem too, so it was probably an issue with the original board tape.  Even Retro's "Everything's Gone Green" - from this gig, sourced from an unknown generation dub, and far (FAR) worse quality than we have here, has the dropout.  Other than those two bits, the tape itself was in fine shape.

All in all, a gig that I played, at best, once a year suddenly becomes something that won't be leaving my iPhone for a long, long time.

01 Blue Monday
02 In A Lonely Place
03 Chosen Time
04 Dreams Never End (with SMG643Y following)
05 We All Stand
06 Leave Me Alone
07 Age Of Consent
08 Temptation (false start)
09 Temptation
10 586 (false start)
11 586
12 Everything's Gone Green

FLACs here.

Enjoy!  And thanks to my buddy Johan (Species) for the artwork.  You would think there would be a decent photo of either the venue or the gig somewhere online, but no... the venue is one of the most boring buildings I've ever seen, based on the Google!


  1. fabulous. thank you. can bin your old version from STG now. :)

  2. Many Thanks, I've had numerous versions of this over the past 29 years!!!!

  3. Dear Mr. Analog, Thanks very much for this, but WHEN are you going to get your hands on "Movement"? PLEEEEEEASE!

  4. Cheers for this one, I've been searching it for a long time, keep up the great work !

  5. This is all beautiful work, thank you very much.

  6. One is hard pressed to find a better played live performance of "Leave Me Alone" than this one. I just smile...

    A thousand thanks!

  7. I think one of the reasons the scooter ended up on the lift of the truck, apart from being an annoying journo, was that said scooter was reportedly purchased after he received an advance to write the book.

    It's funny how they were known as 'miserable bastards' but in reality they liked nothing better than a prank:

    Releasing a tear gas grenade on the stage before the gig.

    Filling the windscreen washer bottle on the truck with urine and trying to squirt it at passers-by.

    [My poor relative was the unintended 'victim' in both of the above 'japes']

    Continually picking on poor Anton Corbijn. 'That big Dutch twat' as Rob called him.

    They may have been 'guarded' when the media were around [partly because of Rob's brilliant 'guidance']but solemn and miserable they most certainly weren't.

    R.I.P. Griz

  8. All of these remastered posts fill me with joy. Thanks so much!

  9. New URL due to previous Mediafire shutdown...

  10. Together with four tracks from the Rolling Stone Milan show a couple of weeks earlier, three tracks of this show ended up on the 'Blue Monday (FAC Pro 3)' bootleg LP released in the early 80's. A bootleg with such a great sound I always wondered if it was an official release.

  11. As one of the `bollock brains' at the gig thank you for your work on this. I remember it as a great New Order gig, but now I have the proof. You are indeed an artist, thanks.