New Sounds: usLights cover Joy Division’s ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’ because Valentine’s Day


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Depending on how you feel about Valentine’s Day, February 14 is either just another day on the calendar or the most excruciating examination of your solitary existence this side of Christmas. If there’s one uniform certainty about this day, it’s that you’ve probably played Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” at one point in your life, at an overwhelming volume to help cope with… something.

And that’s understandable, because the second-greatest song of the 20th century — behind New Order’s “Blue Monday,” obviously — is one that never wears thin on the ears of your heart. It’s as timeless today as it was when it came out nearly 40 years ago (yikes), and it’s been sang, cried to, lamented over, and covered more times than anyone could ever count.

To honor the day and the existential dread that seems to permeate our miserable lives, Massachusetts experimental pop group usLights have unveiled their own rendition of the classic, giving “Love Will Tear Us Apart” an almost dream-like quality. Their cover drifts along the mental corridors of regret and despair, held together by the timeless lyrics of the late Ian Curtis.

“Take off your clothes,” usLights write, “and turn the volume up to 10.”

Hopefully their bedroom isn’t too cold.

Stream usLights’ take on “Love Will Tear Us Apart” below via Spotify, and click here for info on how to acquire one of the 30 limited edition vinyl copies that’ll be pressed. In related news, Joy Division bassist Peter Hook returns to Boston with his band The Light on this spring, bringing the Substance 2018 tour to The Paradise Rock Club on April 28.

Featured usLights photo by Kayla Chin.