Closer (studio album) by Joy Division

Closer by Joy Division
Year: 1980
Overall rank: 71st   Overall chart historyOverall chart history
Average Rating: 
85/100 (from 1,726 votes)
  Ratings distributionRatings distribution   Average rating historyAverage rating history
Award Top 5 albums of 1980 (2nd)
Award Top 10 albums of the 1980s (8th)
Award Top 100 albums of all time (71st)
Product Details

Joy Division, Closer, 40th Anniversary Limited ED, 180G Clear COLORED VINYL, NEW
Condition: New
Time left: 2h 35m 24s
Ships to: Worldwide

Joy Division, Closer vinyl LP, 2007 Re-issue on 180-gram vinyl
Condition: New
Time left: 5h 30m 6s
Ships to: Worldwide
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Joy Division - Closer (Vinyl LP Record Album) Cut from 2007 Remasters NEW!
Condition: Used
Time left: 8h 2m 58s
Ships to: Worldwide

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Joy Division bestography

Closer is ranked 2nd best out of 12 albums by Joy Division on

The best album by Joy Division is Unknown Pleasures which is ranked number 32 in the list of all-time albums with a total rank score of 32,836.

Joy Division album bestography « Higher ranked (32nd) This album (71st) Lower ranked (1,391st) »
Unknown PleasuresCloserSubstance

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Closer track list

  Track ratingsTrack ratings The tracks on this album have an average rating of 86 out of 100 (all tracks have been rated).

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Rating: 87 (363 votes)Comments: 0
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Rating: 84 (320 votes)Comments: 1
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Rating: 82 (298 votes)Comments: 1
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Rating: 84 (331 votes)Comments: 2
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Rating: 88 (342 votes)Comments: 1
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Rating: 90 (406 votes)Comments: 5
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Closer rankings

Closer collection

Closer ratings

Average Rating: 
85/100 (from 1,726 votes)
  Ratings distributionRatings distribution Average Rating = (n ÷ (n + m)) × av + (m ÷ (n + m)) × AV
av = trimmed mean average rating an item has currently received.
n = number of ratings an item has currently received.
m = minimum number of ratings required for an item to appear in a 'top-rated' chart (currently 10).
AV = the site mean average rating.

Showing latest 5 ratings for this album. | Show all 1,726 ratings for this album.

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3 days ago Dustymoth  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 2598/100
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4 days ago Cytoma  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 13379/100
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04/30/2021 18:35 seb7  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 45581/100
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04/18/2021 02:48 NickyTBlizzad  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 1,55594/100
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04/17/2021 16:31 fajarnurdian  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 10779/100

Rating metrics: Outliers can be removed when calculating a mean average to dampen the effects of ratings outside the normal distribution. This figure is provided as the trimmed mean. A high standard deviation can be legitimate, but can sometimes indicate 'gaming' is occurring. Consider a simplified example* of an item receiving ratings of 100, 50, & 0. The mean average rating would be 50. However, ratings of 55, 50 & 45 could also result in the same average. The second average might be more trusted because there is more consensus around a particular rating (a lower deviation).
(*In practice, some albums can have several thousand ratings)

This album is rated in the top 1% of all albums on This album has a Bayesian average rating of 85.5/100, a mean average of 83.9/100, and a trimmed mean (excluding outliers) of 85.6/100. The standard deviation for this album is 15.9.

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Closer comments

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From 01/23/2021 17:44
Is there a more painfully hopeless album? I highly doubt it.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (2 helpful | 2 unhelpful)
From 12/30/2020 17:34
This comment is beneath your viewing threshold.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -3 votes (0 helpful | 3 unhelpful)
From 11/07/2020 18:29
I absolutely loved their debut so I was really stoked to hear this one. Boy was I disappointed... I don't understand what everyone here is going on about. It's not terrible but it did not live up to the hype for me. Sorry Joy Division fans, I actually really tried to like this.
Twenty Four Hours was a dope track though!
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 09/28/2020 04:45

15/06/79: ‘Unknown Pleasures’ released to critical acclaim

Late 1979 to early 1980: tracks for what would become ‘Closer’ recorded with Martin Hannett once more at the helm

June 1980: none album release “Love Will Tear Us Apart” breaks Joy Division globally & reaching number 3 on the New Zealand album charts of all places

18/05/1980: Ian Curtis sadly passes aged only 23 years old on the eve of the bands maiden US Tour

18/07/1980: ‘Closer’ released posthumously 3 days after what would have be Curtis’s 24th birthday to critical acclaim

AllMusic - 5 Stars

NME - 10/10

Pitchfork- 10/10

Q - 5 Stars

Rolling Stone - 5 Stars

Select - 5/5

Spin - 10/10

Uncut - 5 Stars

Damn straight!! I have nothing more to add
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +3 votes (3 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
From 07/07/2020 17:51
Just a teensy little bit less good than Unknown Pleasures. Fantastic nonetheless. It's a little bit more upbeat than their debut, but it's still infinitely dreary.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +2 votes (3 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 06/02/2020 21:54
Sadly, this album does not do it for me.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -1 votes (1 helpful | 2 unhelpful)
From 05/30/2020 23:12
The swan song from short-lived post-rock luminaries Joy Division is markedly more finessed and emotionally nuanced than the band's universally hailed debut record, Unknown Pleasures. Closer, their second and concluding collection of music, is a paradigm shifting, soul excursion into the psyche of frontman Ian Curtis during his final days. Due to this saddening alignment of events, the album acts both as a monument of post-rock music but also as a scientific, psychological documentation of a virtuoso battling mortal depression. At times, knowing the events that would unfold, some of Curtis' poetry may be too searing for certain listeners. Rest assured, they can take solace in the transcendent beauty of the music itself.

The LP emerges with Atrocity Exhibition, a tribal tonal shift for the quartet, which features drummer Stephen Morris as the focal point of the track, extending the invitation to the listener as Curtis croons, "This is the way, step inside". Track two features the airy, hissing Isolation during which Bernard Sumner's synthwork fills the sonic space like a gas leak. Cavernous and harrowing, Curtis murmurs, "Surrendered to self preservation, from others who care for themselves, a blindness that touches perfection, but hurts just like anything else." Percussion, as touched upon earlier, is a large component of the album's might. This is showcased astutely on side two opener, Heart and Soul, where Morris' hypnotic drumbeat is pushed to the forefront of the mix as Peter Hook's accordant bassline hovers close behind. Lyrically, Curtis must ponder his sacrificial preference, proclaiming, "Heart and soul, one will burn." The final album track in the band's canon is Decades, an icy, sparkling ode to the destructive nature of trauma and a youth unfulfilled. Synth whirls in tandem with Morris' punctual drum hits create the illusion that time is spiraling away from the narrator with no way to correct the nefarious rotation. Curtis sings, 'Weary inside, now our heart's lost forever, can't replace the fear or the thrill of the chase, each ritual showed up the door for our wanderings, open then shut, then slammed in our face," contextualizing his forlorn disappointment.

Vocalist Ian Curtis wouldn't live to see the release of his final, most significant piece of art. Closer's album cover serves as an eerie testament to what lies between the lines of the poetry confined within. The sense of mourning is thoroughly encapsulated in the black and white starkness of Bernard Pierre Wolf's photo of the Appiani Family Tomb in Genoa. Closer embodies its namesake as a conduit to occupy remarkable proximity to death and emotional turmoil. From the debris left behind from Joy Division's Shakespearian conclusion, a new artistic force was constructed. New Order would go on to have commercial and critical success for two decades, all the while enduring the immense pain of their phantom limb, a fallen brother in arms. Closer is Ian Curtis' gift to the world, in all its shimmering beauty and soul-demolishing despair.

"Now that I've realized how it's all gone wrong,
Gotta find some therapy, this treatment takes too long,
Deep in the heart of where sympathy held sway,
Gotta find my destiny, before it gets too late."

-Twenty Four Hours

Standout Tracks

1. Decades
2. Isolation
3. Twenty Four Hours

Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (2 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 05/30/2020 01:19
Fav. Tracks: Atrocity Exhibition, Isolation, Twenty Four Hours, The Eternal, Decades.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -1 votes (0 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 05/24/2020 08:47
Great album!
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | -1 votes (0 helpful | 1 unhelpful)
From 04/19/2020 17:05

Twenty Four Hours
Atrocity Exhibition
Heart & Soul
A Means To An End
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | 0 votes (0 helpful | 0 unhelpful)

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Best Albums of 1980
1. Remain In Light by Talking Heads
2. Closer by Joy Division
3. Back In Black by AC/DC
4. Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables by Dead Kennedys
5. Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) by David Bowie
6. The River by Bruce Springsteen
7. Peter Gabriel III by Peter Gabriel
8. Seventeen Seconds by The Cure
9. Making Movies by Dire Straits
10. Permanent Waves by Rush
11. Pretenders by Pretenders
12. Sandinista! by The Clash
13. Crazy Rhythms by The Feelies
14. Boy by U2
15. Heaven And Hell by Black Sabbath
16. Ace Of Spades by Motörhead
17. Get Happy!! by Elvis Costello And The Attractions
18. Dirty Mind by Prince
19. Sound Affects by The Jam
20. Iron Maiden by Iron Maiden
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