10 March 2014Martin Hannett dvd documentary review
We have been privy to a sneak preview of the previously-announced Martin Hannett featuring contributions from Tony Wilson, Vini Reilly, Bruce Mitchell, Peter Hook, Bernard Sumner, Tosh Ryan, Steve Hopkins (Invisible Girls), Mark Radcliffe, Dave Formula, Reni and Andy Couzens (Stone Roses) plus many othera.
This is no flash expensive BBC documentary, it's a gritty warts 'n' all tale of experimentation, laid bare with the minimum of trickery and a host of wide-eyed observers, interviewed from the '90s onwards - it's rather like witnessing a chat down the pub in some cases (this is no bad thing). There is a soundtrack of sorts, mainly confined to studio tape offcuts and a few videos of Hannett rubbing Wilson up the wrong way or, rather upsettingly, being wheeled around in a shopping trolley for a music video like an overfed turkey. Death was slowly coming by the time that infamous New FADS video hit the channels.
When all is said and done, Martin Hannett really wasn't just the fifth member of Joy Division, or the fourth in The Names or the third in Durutti Column - he was a pioneer in the mould of Joe Meek and Phil Spector, a one-off, a maverick and the like of whom we're unlikely to see, or hear, again. So, until someone at the Beeb gets off their arse and makes a high-end film about the man called Zero, this no-frills DVD will suffice.
Read the full 4* review by Cerysmatic's Paul Pledger via his Flipside Reviews.
Martin Hannett: He Wasn't Just The Fifth Member of Joy Division launches on 10 April from 7pm at Gorilla in Manchester.
For more details on pre-ordering please email email@example.com.
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