New Order

Rising from the ashes of the legendary British post-punk unit Joy Division, the enigmatic New Order triumphed over tragedy to emerge as one of the most influential and acclaimed bands of the 1980s; embracing the electronic textures and disco rhythms of the underground club culture many years in advance of its contemporaries, the group's pioneering fusion of new wave aesthetics and dance music successfully bridged the gap between the two worlds, creating a distinctively thoughtful and oblique brand of synth pop appealing equally to the mind, body, and soul. New Order's origins officially date back to mid-1976, when guitarist Bernard Sumner (formerly Albrecht) and bassist Peter Hook -- inspired by a recent Sex Pistols performance -- announced their intentions to form a band of their own. Recruiting singer Ian Curtis and drummer Stephen Morris, they eventually settled on the name Joy Division, and in 1979 issued their landmark debut LP, Unknown Pleasures.