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September 2001


IT'S been EIGHT years since New Order made a record but now they are back with Get Ready, one of their finest albums of the 20 year history.

In the time away, they've teamed up with different bands, played the odd live show and even split up.

Luckily they answered everyone's calls to get back together and now are planning an even longer and brighter future.

Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Stephen Morris gave us the lowdown on life back at the top, and why they still remain the best of pals.

You can read what they had to say here as well as hear them talk.

What’s behind the title of this new album?

Hooky-The title of the album is 'Get Ready' so it could mean anything or nothing.

I thought it was just nice, New Order, 'Get Ready', 'cos we are, we're getting ready for the next phase of our musical lives both physically and mentally so it's quite a simple thing but it's very pertinent.

How does it feel to be working together again?

Bernard- It almost feels like you're starting again.

And because it's fresh you kind of, I don't know, it's just exciting really, more exciting you don't feel like oh I've done this for the past ten years.

Although we have been doing stuff with our solo projects, it's not been the same as New Order.

Hooky- We've had nothing but positive words from the record company, from the people that we've gone back to, they’ve been really, really positive and like really happy that New Order are back together again.

You’ve all had side projects outside New Order - have those experiences been valuable?

Bernard- By working with other people you find out different ways of doing things and different attitudes, different ways of making music.

What’s the status with those side projects? Will we hear any more from The Other Two, Electronic or Monaco?

Stephen- No, I don't think so, no I don't think there will be any more Other Two records. You know we had fun doing it.

Bernard- Yes, Electronic are still going but we've not really got any plans to do anything so... I think I've got enough on my hands at the moment and Johnny’s busy so we're both busy enough.

I’d like my life to quieten down a bit actually, not get any more intense than it is at the moment. I just want to concentrate on New Order now, really.

There was a lot of bad feeling in the band when you parted company?

Hooky- You do tend to forget what you were so angry about, you know, it's like having an argument with your missus or something.

New Order just took a little bit longer than that, eight years.

Was there ever a time when you thought you’d never make another New Order record?

Bernard- I guess at one point I did think that we’d never make another record.

We never planned much for the future. But I'm glad we've got back together 'cos you know it's a much better way of ending things.

Hooky- Now we're getting on really well, I must admit, I mean it actually feels like when Bernard and I first met funnily enough.

I've known him since I was 11, he's probably about one of the oldest people I know.

What sort of music have you been listening to recently?

Hooky- Funnily enough I still find myself listening to a lot of old stuff that I'd listened to at the start, like Iggy Pop and Lou Reed.

Obviously you go through phases of going ‘right, I'm going to go out and buy the top ten records’ and you go and buy them all and then realise they all sound like somebody else.

Bernard-I've always been criminally disappointed by what I've bought in terms of current music.

Hooky-Coldplay are a very good group, great album.

Stephen-And Missy Elliot, Missy Elliot is good, I like that one, yes hip hop and Portishead, yes, I wish I could find which CD was Portishead in my car 'cos I'd take it out and put something else in!

Why did you pick ‘Crystal’ as the first single

Hooky-It just came... seemed dead obvious, really up front, really different sounding but dead powerful.

Where does the inspiration for your lyrics come from?

Bernard: It's a very difficult thing writing lyrics because if you write lyrics.

I'll bring the track home here and I have to find inspiration, I have to find a subject to write my lyrics about.

I just wait ‘til about seven o'clock at night and I go in that little room over there with a glass of port, a bit of alcohol always helps, and go right, you're not leaving this desk, you're not going out, you're not going to bed, you're not going anywhere until you've written the vocal and I can do it in one night between seven and say two o'clock, three o'clock in the morning I can write a song, I could do it tonight if I wanted.

Do you ever worry that this songwriting inspiration might dry up?

Bernard- I guess not knowing how you do something keeps it fresh and every time you come to write it feels like the first time you've written because you're like ‘how do you do it, how do you write songs?’

How will these songs work on stage?

Hooky-I think with every LP we've ever done the ones that we thought were going to sound live, great live, didn't, and the ones we didn't think were going to sound great live did.

It's like it's going to be really difficult to 'cos all the songs are so up for it and you think oh man, that's going to be great live, you know it's like that, you're going to have a real problem balancing it out again.

Why won’t Gillian be joining the band on tour this year?

Stephen- Unfortunately my youngest daughter, our youngest daughter, is recovering from a serious illness and it's kind of like when something like that happens you put your family first really.

It was a difficult decision to make but that's what we decided. I mean it was either... it had to be one of us really and it ended up being Gillian.

How important is it for you to tour this album internationally?

Bernard- To be honest the whole of this year is kind of testing the water and sort of seeing if we still like it. I mean we toured and toured for years and years and now we just want to play the places we want to play so we're not away from home for too long.

Are you proud that you’re still able to do this after 25 years in the business?

Hooky- When I started at 21 I never thought I'd still be doing it at 45; 45 seemed like my God, I couldn't even imagine how far away 45 seemed and yet it's here now and I'm still doing exactly the same thing, just as well I'd hope.

And you know hopefully it will last 'til 65.