All-Time Albums: #93


NEW ORDER Technique

1 Fine Time 4:43 (UK single, #11)
2 All The Way 3:24
3 Love Less 3:04
4 Round & Round 4:31 (UK single, #21)
5 Guilty Partner 4:48
Run 4:31 (UK single, as Run 2, August 1989 #49)
Mr. Disco 4:21
Vanishing Point 5:17
9 Dream Attack 5:15


Unquestionably one of the greatest singles bands ever, New Order’s albums can be hit and miss to say the least. A lot had changed for the band since their previous LP in 1986, the messy Brotherhood. Back then they couldn’t crack the Top 40 with classics like Bizarre Love Triangle and before it The Perfect Kiss, and Brotherhood itself disappeared from the charts, and the public consciousness, with indecent haste.

True Faith altered the landscape completely, along with the superior collection Substance 1980-1987. Now, they could release the best-heard-in-clubs-while-off-your-face single Fine Time and almost get into the UK Top 10 at Christmas 1988. Come the New Year, Technique was eagerly awaited and entered at #1.

It’s something of a paradox for me that their strongest album should lack any of their most defining tracks, bar the incredible Vanishing Point. Round & Round was its Sub-Culture, a frenetic workout in a hurry to get to the end. A sign of their changing status was that it peaked at #21 on the chart when issued as a single, and not somewhere in the mid-50s. Run, or Run 2 (a lot of people can’t tell all that much difference) fared less well, although New Order didn’t usually make a habit of taking yet another single off the album so far down the line.

The first half (aside from Fine Time, which I didn’t like at first and never really warmed to) is pretty solid without any genuine wow moments. All of those appear on Side 2, from the heavenly coda that plays out on Run, through a triple whammy of Mr Disco, Vanishing Point and closer Dream Attack.

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