Sunday, July 21, 2013

Music Criticism - Joy Division - Transmission

The music of Joy Division, like the vast majority of their post-punk peers, weaves the disparate and seemingly irreconcilable threads of punk rock and Krautrock into a single sonic tapestry. If you examine the ancestry of influences in nearly any post-punk group, you will find the DNA of the German experiamental pioneers somewhere in their sound. The auditory chaos of Faust was enthusiastically studied and replicated by The Pop Group, This Heat, and all of the early industrial pioneers. Can took the controlled madness of The Velvet Underground's Sister Ray, an improvisation from hell that fused the rhythmic engine powering Rock'n'Roll with the untameable inventiveness of free jazz, and then extended The Velvet's explorations in a number of new directions. These innovations were in turn picked up by Public Image Ltd, The Fall, and many others. The machine worship of Kraftwerk, when fused with punk rock, spawned the proto-New Wave music of groups like The Talking Heads, and Killing Joke. Each of these groups, and many others, incorporated musical ideas created or refined by the Germans into the punk template. For the most part, however, they remained loyal to the intensity that characterized punk rock, using the abrasive Krautrock experiments as a compliment to the aggressive nature of their punk rock foundation.