Tuesday, 7 June 2011
New Order - Hellbent
There's a long tradition of bunging an exclusive unreleased track onto a greatest hits compilation to entice the loyal fans who already have everything on there to buy it. Sometimes it's clear why the track was previously unreleased - it's not very good at all. Thankfully, this isn't the case with Hellbent, the one new track on the New Order/Joy Division compendium that's out in the shops this week.
One of the reasons New Order stand as one of my favourite bands of all time is the unfailing ear for melody they have - every track, even if it's a low-key album track, is built around so many impossibly catchy hooks you're almost spoilt for choice. And Hellbent, bookending this new compilation, stands as another prime example of that.
Apparently an offcut from the Waiting For The Sirens' Call sessions, it's classic 21st century New Order, showcasing every side of the band. Other bands would lose themselves in the bewildering variety of sonic elements on offer here, but New Order, as ever, carry it off with effortless confidence.
Roughy, fuzzed up guitar licks, sweeping Moby-esque synthesizers and moments of hyper-energy as the verses explode into the chorus with a furious drum fill. Hellbent has it all, even finding time to squeeze in a Peter Hook bass solo and a bit of acid-house piano. Sound-wise, it's probably closest to tracks like Krafty and Player In The League - and quite frankly, is worth the price of the Total compilation in its own right.
But of course, you're getting 17 more of some of the greatest tracks ever written. A bargain, for sure.
Total is available to download from iTunes now.