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Factory Records

Factory Records

British record label

Factory Records was a Manchester-based British independent record label founded in 1978 by Tony Wilson and Alan Erasmus.

The label featured several important acts on its roster, including Joy Division, New Order, A Certain Ratio, the Durutti Column, Happy Mondays, Northside, and (briefly) Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and James. Factory also ran The Haçienda nightclub, in partnership with New Order.

Factory Records used a creative team (most notably record producer Martin Hannett and graphic designer Peter Saville) which gave the label and the artists recording for it a particular sound and image. The label employed a unique cataloguing system that gave a number not just to its musical releases, but also to various other related miscellany, including artwork, films, living beings, and even Wilson's own casket.


'The Factory'

The Factory name was first used for a club in May 1978; the first Factory night was on the 26 May 1978. The club became a Manchester legend in its own right, being known variously as the Russell Club, Caribbean Club, PSV (Public Service Vehicles) Club (so titled as it was originally a social club for bus drivers who worked from the nearby depot) and 'The Factory'. The ‘Factory’ night at The Russell Club was launched by Alan Erasmus, Tony Wilson, and helped by promoter Alan Wise. The name 'Factory' was chosen in homage to the New York club of the same name. As well as attracting numerous touring bands to the area and many upcoming post punk bands, it featured local bands including the Durutti Column (managed at the time by Erasmus and Wilson), Cabaret Voltaire from Sheffield and Joy Division. The club was demolished in 2001. The club was located on the NE corner of the now demolished Hulme Crescents development, on the corner of Royce Rd and Clayburn St (53°28′04.5″N 2°15′00.2″W). Peter Saville designed advertising for the club, and in September Factory released an EP of music by acts who had played at the club (the Durutti Column, Joy Division, Cabaret Voltaire and comedian John Dowie) called A Factory Sample.


The club was demolished
As a follow-on from the successful 'Factory Nights' held at the Russell Club, Factory Records made their first release, "A Factory Sample"
The Factory name was first used for a club.
Wilson compered the new wave afternoon at Deeply Vale Festival. This was actually the fourth live appearance by the fledgling Durutti Column and that afternoon Wilson also introduced an appearance (very early in their career) by the Fall, featuring Mark E. Smith and Marc "Lard" Riley on bass guitar.

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