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New Order - Fine Time (1988)

  • Video Views 381,327
  • 80's Score80's Score 80's score: 1.54
  • Find this song on: Music Stack

"Fine Time" is a song by English rock band New Order, released as the first single from their 1989 album, Technique. The song ...

"Fine Time" is a song by English rock band New Order, released as the first single from their 1989 album, Technique. The song was written and partially recorded in Ibiza; its title was inspired by an incident in which band member Stephen Morris's car was towed, and he had to remember to pay the fine. The single, released on 28 November 1988, received widespread praise during its release and retrospectively. It was also a commercial success, reaching No. 11 on the UK Singles Chart and peaking inside the top 10 in Finland, Ireland, and New Zealand, as well as on three US Billboard genre charts.


According to lead vocalist Bernard Sumner, the band first wrote "Fine Time" after a night at the Amnesia nightclub in Ibiza. Originally, Sumner wanted to record the vocals with an erotic inflection comparable to that of Donna Summer's, but after recording the first take, he realised that the results were far from expectations and sounded as if he were "stuck on the toilet with constipation". On the naming of the track, Stephen Morris said, "my car had been towed away and I had to remind myself to go and pay the fine. I just wrote "Fine Time" on this piece of paper to remind myself to go get it and thought, that's a good title."

Critical reception

Adam D of Fourculture magazine praised the song, calling its bassline "irresistible" and referring to it as a "monster" of a song, going on to say that none of New Order's following singles were as upbeat or cheeky as "Fine Time". Niner Times writer Aaron Febre said that the song, especially its low-pitched voice sample and the synthesiser, refurbished the band and gave them a fresh start. Reviewing Technique on AllMusic, John Bush called the track one of New Order's most outgoing songs. On the same site, speaking of the song, Ned Raggett said that the band had "not only had paid attention to the acid-house/Ibiza explosion but used it for its own ends, capturing the frenetic energy that the musical eruption on British shores had unleashed with strength and style". He also noted Stephen Morris's "hyperactive" rhythms and Gillian Gilbert's "squirrelly" keyboard playing.

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