I’m done with Bernard.
The bubble has burst.
My faith is shot.
“I listen to The Coors behind closed doors.”
That’s like saying the band rates Lionel Richie!!! Oh… hang on…
Back in 2001 it took me at least a minute or two to get over the initial shock of it all, but it’s a modern world and tolerance is a positive force innit?
One of the genuinely great things about the 2001-2002 period was that each single (except SLY) carried a bespoke B-side; previously an inconsistent thing, depending on how productive the band was in the studio at any given time. By my reckoning only the Technique-period singles, Ruined In A Day, True Faith, Ceremony, Procession, Temptation, and ‘Thieves qualify. All other singles feature dub/instrumental versions and/or remixes. With Get Ready and Waiting For The Siren’s Call the band were obviously on a roll, although as we know the surfeit of recordings for ‘Sirens ended up not as B-sides but as a whole other album. Predictability was never their strong point*…
Being Arthur Baker’s only production contribution of the period (except for his Confusion 2002 remixes), Behind Closed Doors sounds quite removed from Crystal and Get Ready, and – although its not a 100% success – the track is better for it. It has a distinctive passive-aggressive tone, with Bernard’s whispered sinisterisms as per the title, touching on domestic violence, lack of parental responsibility, not coping without drugs, and his slightly deranged “open up your eye” lyric; all placed alongside the near-hush of Hooky’s bass, Morris’s agitated snare/hi-hat patterns, reverbed wind chimes, and the minimal piano and organ notes. Behind Closed Doors really does sound like those very late hours, when certain sounds in the neighborhood leave you unsettled. Small wonder then that when the song shifts to a more robust frame Bernard’s thoughts turn to a more optimistic Coor-filled future!
Some quality Baker-beats and industrial sequencing closes out what is a pretty decent song; a track that – partnering as it did the incredible Crystal – value-added to one of New Order’s best ever singles.
* Compare that with Depeche Mode, against whom you can pretty much set your watch to these days; and – Nostradamus-like – predict the look / sound / feel / touch / and smell of each quadrennial album. Safe Mode if you ask me.
Most recently available on: Crystal