Joy Division

16th June 1979: The Odeon, Canterbury

Supporting The Cure, and supported by Back To Zero, at the Odeon cinema in Canterbury. According to Steve Morris in Mark Johnson's
book, this is the only time they perform "Something must break" live.

This gig was promoted by the University of Kent, Canterbury and adverts in the music press incorrectly had the university as the venue:

Songs performed:
She's Lost Control
New Dawn Fades
These Days
Something Must Break
Atrocity Exhibition

This setlist was rediscovered in one of Rob Gretton's notebooks by the Manchester District Music Archive in 2007

Concert-goer Paul Begg remembers the following: "The gig was at Canterbury Odeon and Joy Division did indeed support The Cure. I know this because I was at the gig, and tremendous it was too. I still have the ticket stub (Front Stalls C11, £1.25 well spent). Apart from it being a tremendous gig, my mate who was down at the front during Joy Division told me afterwards that Ian Curtis' flies were undone.

Joy Division
Thanks to John Sanders for the scan


Press advert

Thanks to The Cure Concerts Guide for the advert scan

Thanks to Mike S for the ticket scan


Faked Poster
The poster below was thought to be the poster for this gig - however in 2006 we got an email from John - who provided the gig poster above - saying "Just like to send you this pic of the Canterbury Uni gig (Supporting the cure) the pic you have is of a 1979 Cure tour poster which the lovely people at [name of record shop removed] wrote the Canterbury date on so they could inflate the price of the poster to Joy Division fans (I know this cause I know who sold them the poster and it was blank when they had it!!!"

Thanks to The Cure: Boys Are Forever Drowning in Pornography web site for the scan


Brian Kotz was in support band Back To Zero. Here are his recollections of the evening, which was their 20th gig:

We were bottom-of-the-bill to The Cure (headliners) and Joy Division, it was a late agency add on for us. The two bands' debut albums, "3 Imaginary Boys" and "Unknown Pleasures" respectively, had been released during the previous weeks. It was the first time that we'd really played with bands who weren't part of our scene (the 1979 MOD Scene), which made it interesting, and it was the first time we'd played at a seated venue.

We weren't sure how well we were going down after the first number, so I immediately exhorted the punters to get up and move around a bit, which had an immediate positive reaction, and I really enjoyed our set.

Then came JD. I was sitting right by the side of the stage in the wings (yes, the place really did have old-time "wings")! watching them, and I have to say that I have never witnessed anything like it before or since. It may not have totally been what I was into at the time, but Curtis, and in fact the whole band, were mesmerising to watch and listen to, whole banks of sound washing over me.......and the crowd were mesmerised too. Do you know something? Not one person in the auditorium applauded after any of their songs, BUT, this was not indifference. I could see the crowd from where I was positioned, and they were totally agog at the spectacle. I'm sure that those who were there are still talking about the gig until this very day. Some members of our concern thought that we'd gone down better because we induced dancing, but that was totally missing the point. Whilst we were packing our gear away, One or two of the band, (I think Sumner and maybe Ian Curtis himself) complimented us on a good set, and told us that they were looking forward to playing in London the following night because they'd be supporting John Cooper Clarke - indeed they did, according to a gig list that I've just found. I must admit that I can't remember any of the individual songs they played that night - which means that I don't have an immediate recollection of seeing them do "She's Lost Control", dammit!

I was a voracious collector of ephemera from all of our gigs, whenever I could nab something, but unfortunately I don't have anything from that night - probably because we weren't mentioned on the flyer or some silly reason like that - it goes without saying that I wish I had.

We'd seen The Cure soundchecking, but were back in the van heading towards London by the time they were playing their set. During the recording of the reunion album in 2003, I heard Sam tell a friend of mine that he thought they were "fantastic" that night, not too sure how he worked that one out, as he didn't see them!