27 December 2012Northern Quarter Picture Co.
Trevor, who is famous for his solo and Johnson/Panas work with A Certain Ratio, Biting Tongues, Kalima, The Durutti Column and Electronic amongst others, has also designed the shop's graphic identity.
The Northern Quarter Picture Co. opens in January but you will be able to sneak a preview on their website at www.nqpc.co.uk very soon.
Graeme Park (7-hr Set), Marshall Jefferson, Russ, Nipper, Peter Hook, MC Tunes, Herbie Saccani, Bobby Langley.
Hacienda 30: The Christmas Party @ Sankeys
Sankeys, Radium St Manchester, M4 6JG
Tickets GBP 15.00 Advance (may be available on the door)
25 December 2012This Christmas, feel safe with modern music
Merry Christmas from Cerysmatic Factory and a Happy New Year. May it bring all that you wish for (including maybe a new Scream City).
22 December 2012From Motion To Standstill
"It feels like only yesterday, but in fact it was January 2011 when all the band members got together to discuss a possible reformation of the mighty Minny Pops. It is now December 2012 and just over a week since we played our last gig (ever) at the Lexington in London. It was a very special night for me; I had fun and hope our audience had fun, too. I'm happy to have played live versions of FAC 31, OGEN 019, FBN 11 and FAC 57; we even checked to see if anyone could remember our classics Kojak and RU21.
"Loved the positive feedback we got after the show; enjoyed drinking a shot with our fans and giving them a kiss or a hug. One of the highlights was being asked 'Will you marry me?' by one of our fans via Twitter - how modern!
"So here we are today, and I have thought about it long and hard: Minny Pops began as a project and should end as a project. There were moments this year, on the road with our live line-up, that I felt like I was in a band. And it definitely felt like being in a band when we recorded our Waiting For This To Happen/Glistering single in one take at Eve Studios in Stockport. I am so proud of our new single; I am so proud of my fellow band members' performances and grateful to Tim Burgess for providing us with an opportunity to record two new tracks after nearly 30 years.
"But it ain't over yet. I am open to the unexpected - and to tell you the truth, the Minny Pops book will not close. We have just added another great chapter. Maybe another one in another 30 years?"
The Forum is suspended due to technical reasons (mainly because reprogramming it for the new site while the old site was live was a step too far).
My thanks to Iain Ashworth for technogeekery, Steven Hankinson for original design inspiration and Mark Holt for confirming that it's ok to design occasionally using Excel.
A more detailed rundown of the enhancements and changes will follow on the Updates channel on the News page.
18 December 2012Factory Records pin badges via Polite
The re-edition of the FAC 120 badge in black/red colour variants is accompanied by a now-official badge based on the FAC 47 anvil logo (which was previously issued as a fan-created limited edition of 47 in 2008).
Polite states that a boxed set version of all 3 badges will be available in late January 2013, but meanwhile they are selling individually for 10.00 GBP each.
17 December 2012Factory Records Postcard Set 1978-82
04 December 2012A Factory Benelux Story
How did it come about?
When the Shadowplayers book was published in 2010, Peter Saville and I discussed some sort of umbrella organisation to protect and preserve the Factory legacy, rather than the logos, brand, heritage and so forth being used willy-nilly. Something like the Bauhaus Foundation.
That led to the formation of a new company, Factory Records Limited - which in turn led to a lengthy negotiation with WMG... After more than two years all we'd manage to achieve was a double vinyl reissue of Fact 90, and the Polite postcard and badge editions. From the outset we tried to involved Alan Erasmus and several other interested parties, but it just proved unworkable - rather like New Order and Hooky have proved unworkable in recent years.
So Peter and I gave up, really. It was like trying to raise the Titanic. And as the old joke goes, it might have been easier to lower the Atlantic.
What I would say is, the moment you wave the Factory flag and stick your head above the parapet, all sorts of nutters break cover and start firing potshots. Life's too short.
Anyway, I didn't want to cancel the Factory music reissue projects I had in mind, and earlier in 2012 I'd already issued the limited edition vinyl album of Short Stories for Pauline by The Durutti Column, with the blessing of Michel Duval. Since that edition was favourably received, I figured why not carry on with Factory Benelux.
Who is behind it?
Me, and the participating artists. I obtained the FBN name and logos from Michel in exchange for a donation to the Christie Hospital in Manchester, who looked after Tony Wilson at the end. It seemed like an appropriate gesture. Annik Honoré gave the idea her blessing too. Plus, on a personal level, I'm a lot more comfortable working with the Factory Benelux brand, because I worked with Michel in Brussels for several years between 1989 and 1991, whereas I was never directly involved with Factory Records in Manchester.
FBN is also a nice way of returning the Factory marque to come key recordings, without actually calling it Factory. Like the original FBN, it retains a sense of distance and otherness.
What other reissues do you have planned?
They're editions, dear boy. It's a mixture of CDs and vinyl, mostly remastered and with upgraded artwork. So Swimming by The Names gains their Peel session, the Crispy Ambulance album the original De Roeck artwork, and so on. The booklets are mainly visual, usually period photography and satellite artwork, without too much in the way of sleevenotes.
We've expanded LC by The Durutti Column into a double disc edition, because Vini was so prolific at the time, and very little that he recorded was filler.
All the CDs will come in a special FBN slipcase also - at least if you order direct from us. It proved a bit difficult trying to apply a generic slipcase to shop copies. All sorts of tedious issues with barcodes etc, plus it obscures some rather nice original artwork, which is somewhat counter-productive.
The Blurt vinyl is interesting. Live In Berlin should have come out as a 10" (FBN 5 or 6, depending on which archive source you consult) in 1981, but then Ted got a better offer from Armageddon, who released In Berlin as a standard 12" live album. To fit all 8 tracks on, we've had to include a bonus 7" as well. That costs way more to press than a 12", but a 12" would be a bit boring, and not true to the original FBN concept. Plus a 10" really suits Blurt's music well. There's a kind of faux jazz sleevenote from Chris Bohn also. It'll probably lose money!
Will you be releasing any wholly new material?
Yes, the new Section 25 album Dark Light will be on FBN, as will their limited 7" single for Record Store Day in April 2013. Peter Saville kindly provided the cover image and the title for the album. There will also be a vinyl edition of the recent Wake album A Light Far Out, again for RSD.
It's important to stress that all 'new' FBN releases are new editions through, not simply facsimiles of the original releases and formats. That would be misleading, and plain dull. Instead it's high-end antique futurism. From Belgium. Kinda sorta.
Many thanks to James Nice.
Post punk cult band The Names emerged in the winter of 1977-1978 as The Passengers, gathering immediate attention on the local Brussels scene. In 1979, after a series of successful gigs and a crucial step forward opening for Magazine, they recorded their first E.P. ("Spectators Of Life") and attracted the interest of prominent label Factory Records in Manchester.
Their first British studio session (at Stockport's Strawberry Studio) produced the single "Nightshift" / "I Wish I Could Speak Your Language (Fac 29). Receiving enthusiastic reviews in the UK and abroad, it marked the start of a long and fruitful collaboration with producer Martin Hannett. The album "Swimming" followed as well as more singles, including "Calcutta" and "The Astronaut".
- extract from the official website biography