Meaning of “New Dawn Fades” by Joy Division

New Dawn Fades is a song performed by the English band Joy Division. The song is widely considered to be about suicide, which is caused by the breakdown of the singer’s romantic relationship and other unbearable problems of his life.

Many believe that the lyrics of the song are based on the life of Ian Curtis (singer and main lyricist of Joy Division) who tragically committed suicide at the young age of 23 in 1980 – about a year after the song was released. Curtis leaved a life plagued by severe epilepsy and depression. He took his own life shortly after his wife Deborah Curtis left him after she found out he was being unfaithful to her.

New Dawn Fades lyrics

In a 2007 interview Joy Division drummer Stephen Morris had with the British newspaper The Guardian, he said both he and the other band members only realized after Curtis’ tragic death that most of the dark lyrics he wrote were about the unbearable turmoil in his life.

Facts about “New Dawn Fades”

  • The song was written by all member of Joy Division (Ian Curtis, Peter Hook, Bernard Summer and Stephen Morris).
  • The lyrics of New Dawn Fades, which were written by Ian Curtis, tell the story of the desperate turmoil in his life.
  • The song, which is one of Joy Division’s darkest songs, appears on the band’s 1979 debut studio album titled Unknown Pleasures.
  • The song was produced by Joy Division and the late English record producer Martin Hannett (also known as Martin Zero).
  • The title of the song “New Dawn Fades” doesn’t appear even once in the lyrics of the song.
  • The song has been covered by a number of artists over the years, including by American electronic musician Moby, who recorded the song with New Order – an English rock band formed by the surviving members of Joy Division.
  • The song has appeared in several films, including the 1995 crime film Heat, the 2005 horror film House of Wax and the 2014 action thriller film The Equalizer.

4 Responses

  1. TruthOrFact says:

    Song is based upon an authentic diary – of a fourteen year old Polish Jew and her enforced prostitution in a Nazi labour camp. She would wake up and hope to find love only to have everymoring fade into a nightmare. Book is called House of Dolls.
    Ka-tzetnik 135633

  2. Anonymous says:

    This is without doubt a truly mesmerizing art of work from Joy Division! RIP Ian Curtis.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I never have been moved so much by a song, Ian Curtis is my ultimate idol, though I am sane enough to regret his choices, Were we only to have enjoyed more of this talented young man, such a waiste he needed to feel to take his own life. Being 62 right now, but being a contempory of this musical hero I can allmost feel his pain, saw him perform just once, he gave it all, still gets goosebumps 40 years later when I hear this. it will be part of my funeral.

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