Roskilde 2016 Review: New Order

Frontman Bernard Sumner pushed back the years on Saturday night, as New Order turned the Arena Stage into a pit of ecstasy, fuelled by the band’s electro-rave hits.

Brilliant, but controversial visuals

The opening sequence was the same as the images that featured at Glastonbury last week. The images used had generated mild controversy in the United Kingdom, as they included footage captured at the 1936 Olympic games by Hitler’s preferred propagandist, Leni Riefenstahl. But New Order have never been known for their sensitivity and it had no impact on the crowd that arrived to watch their heroes.

The visual effects throughout the performance were absolutely sensational and possibly some of the best seen at Roskilde this year. The band made full use of the big screens with miniature movies throughout the set list, whilst the classic disco ball in the second half of the performance didn’t seem dated at all, in fact it could have been utilised sooner.

Tribute to their roots

The biggest cheer of the night came at the end, as the band honoured their fallen comrade, former frontman Ian Curtis. His image flashed during ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’, triggering cheers so loud he may well have heard them from beyond the grave.

Sound problems seemed to plague the set and at one point things got so bad, Sumner used the microphone to ask the technicians to come up and sort the problem out. Equally the music was so loud, at times the vocals were drowned out. This didn’t seem to impact the average festival-goer however, as the forward sections jumped and jived for the entire 90-minute set.

One of the things that makes Roskilde so special is the mix of veteran fans that welcome acts like old friends and younger viewers who have come to experience legends in concert for the first time. This was particularly apparent in this crowd and added to the excitement and party atmosphere.

Overall New Order continued their successful festival season, as combination of visual effects and barnstorming music created a performance that will be remembered by those present for a very long time.