Artist: Peter Hook & The Light
Venue: FAC251: The Factory, Manchester [Opening Night]
Twenty years since the birth of ‘Madchester’, the evening saw the revamp and relaunch of the building that conceived the scene, and facilitated its demise.
FAC251 was the legendary head office of Factory Communications. Created by Tony Wilson, designed by Ben Kelly, endlessly funded by New Order (along with The Haçienda), and finally bankrupted by artistic ideology (expedited by Happy Mondays).
Nearly two decades later, the iconic building was rescued and resurrected by Peter Hook, Ben Kelly and Function One – and reborn as FAC251: The Factory.
In true Factory style, the building was barely completed on launch night. The freshly plastered walls were still damp and certain fittings and fixtures required finishing – but there was special sense of occasion, as those in the know mingled with Mancunian legends and celebrities.
Support act Freebass was a bass player ‘super group’ including Peter Hook (New Order), Mani (The Stone Roses) and Andy Rourke (The Smiths), with Gary Briggs on vocals.
Peter Hook & The Light performed a poignant set of Joy Division songs, with Rowetta (Happy Mondays) adding a beautiful and emotional twist to some of Ian Curtis’s haunting lyrics.