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Single Review: New Order - Be A Rebel

This is the strangest of times, one that has provided time and space for reminiscing, pulling on the memories of better times; of our youth, of the music, film and art that influenced our young minds. That is a bright spark in what is currently a dark world. However, it would amiss to suggest that among the gloom and despair that currently surround us there aren’t some rays of hope fighting through.

Electoral changes sparking wild celebrations, imminent resignations of divisive figures and the news of a vaccine that the world hopes will bring relief, have all coincided with the arrival of the latest New Order offering, Be A Rebel. As they take us back to what makes them on of the most revered and resilient forces in British music, they tell us that maybe, just maybe, things are starting to get better.

Indeed Bernard Sumner has hinted that the tough times the world has experienced recently, particularly through 2020, was the inspiration for releasing Be A Rebel, one of the tracks that did not make it onto Music Complete. When listening, its omission may be a confusingly decision but, in hindsight, they have timed it perfectly.

The synthesiser sounds as fresh as ever - all that is missing is the infamous meaty bass [ED: but let’s not open that old wound]. Despite that, this is everything we have loved about New Order for the past forty years, but with them placing their attention on the here and now, with Sumner crooning that ‘the world can be a dangerous place, but it’s all we got’. This is an uplifting critique of the world, the vocals and instruments intwined in a soothing yet elevating harmony. Close your eyes, move your body, let it all go.

The drum backbeat is infectious, pining for a dance floor so many hope will return soon, providing the perfect platform for the swooning musical event taking place. Despite so many missing the escapism that the club scene provides, this track acts as a release. Turned up loud it is the antidote we need right now.

In normal New Order vein, it seems this is stand alone single, not a preemptive release promoting a forthcoming album. With it being five years since New Order’s last release, we can only hope they are bookending turbulent period in our history, declaring there will eventually be an end to the chaos, as they tell us ‘there will come a day, when your fear and self doubt fades away. If that day is to arrive soon, then what a soundtrack to bring us into the light.

Listen to/buy the single here.

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