Before I begin I bet some will ask, what the hell has post punk & New Wave got in common? This is where I will explain as best as I can to you so can better understand the transition of the two genres. Many other bands who were regarded as post-punk never actually moved over to new wave, but transitioned into a heavier or darker type of music genre.
Sadly for many of these bands in the two music categories mentioned, they did not last long or they produced a few good songs but it never developed any further. For the ones that got left behind, it was the popularity of New Wave when Post Punk faded out that would be a deciding factor over their demise, some bands switched or put some influence into their music, some of them went on to be successful for many years.
Romeo Void formed in San Francisco when Debora Iyall and Frank Zincavage met at the San Francisco Art Institute. They were both working at their art school over the summer and did a video performance piece. Not before long they began to write songs & rehearsing them in Debora’s flat, using rugs to dampen the noise.
Peter Woods also took part in rehearsals. He was playing in a local band called Mummers & the Poppers before he switched over. Debora Iyall was also a backing singer in the same band. Jay Derrah soon followed to form the original line up that officially formed on Valentine’s Day in 1979. Benjamin Bossi, an inspirational saxophone player, would join not long after, combining his riffs to Debora Iyall’s voice.
The lead singer was hesitant at first airing concerns over her weight. In these modern days, weight is not too much of a concern. However, the image portrayed back in those times gave a reflection that you had to be skinny to be famous. Sadly this would be one part of a few reasons why Romeo Void parted their ways in the end. More about this will be discussed in more detail later on.
One great post-punk band to emerge from the post-punk scene in the UK was a Manchester based Joy Division. Originally labelled as ‘Warsaw’, Joy Division formed after being inspired by a concert performed by the Sex Pistols attended by Bernard Summer & Peter Hook in 1976.
Joy Division quickly rose in popularity with a debut album being released in 1978 by Factory records. It was an immediate success with rave reviews citing them as a new generation of music. Tours also followed.
In 1980 Joy Division was ready to release a new album, however, a setback was to devastate the band and their future. On the first date of their American tour, Ian Curtis committed suicide. Two months later the album was released and was met with critical acclaim.
But without their lead singer, the band were no more. The remaining members continued, but under a new name. More about this and how Joy Division rose to prominence below.