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This is a product from the exhibition ‘Use Hearing Protection FAC 1 – 50 / 40’, celebrating the ground-breaking early works and on-going influence of Factory Records. The exhibition ran from 13 September - 26 October 2019 and told the story of Factory’s formative years from 1978 to 1982 through the first 50 numbered Factory artefacts, including works by Peter Saville, Joy Division and New Order.
Factory Records was an independent record label, formed in Manchester by Tony Wilson and Alan Erasmus in January 1978. Starting as ‘The Factory’ - a new wave live music night - it developed into an independent record label in late 1978. Prominent early acts included A Certain Ratio, Durutti Column, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and Joy Division whose debut album Unknown Pleasures was the first long player on Factory.
In 1982 Factory opened The Haçienda, a music venue and nightclub with a revolutionary industrial design identity by Saville and architect Ben Kelly. The club becoming central to the acid house and dance music scene of the late 1980’s and early 1990’s.
Factory closed in 1992, but its legacy of creativity, superior art and design and as a home to some of the most important and influential UK bands sets it apart as the most vital independent record company of the past 40 years.