On this day in 1980, Ian Curtis, the frontman of post-punk legends Joy Division, took his life after years of suffering from depression and debilitating epilepsy. I can think of no better way to memorialize Mr Curtis than to blast Transmission, my favorite Joy Division song (this particular video is preceded by a snippet of Jonathan Cooper Clarke's Evidently Chickentown):
The band's best known single, the posthumous Love Will Tear Us Apart, is a dark eidolon set up to mock the sunny Love Will Keep Us Together:
The sonic profile of Love Will Tear Us Apart prefigures the sound of New Order, the band which rose from the ashes of Joy Division. One can draw a line directly from "LWTUA" to New Order's Ceremony, with Bernard Sumner's lead vocal seeming to emulate Mr Curtis:
Mr Sumner would develop his own vocal style, and go on to record some of the finest dance music in the history of ass-shaking:
Twenty-five years after Ian Curtis' death, New Order memorialized him by performing a live version of Transmission in concert:
Pity Mr Curtis did not live long enough to leave us a more extensive body of work.