They might have goofed in front-loading their debut with the sprightly, catchy 'Dreams Never End'- -the rest of the album is pretty dour after such an auspicious beginning. It seems they couldn't make up their collective mind as to direction. Hence 'Dreams', which sounds like a hit single and, remarkably, like nothing in the Joy Division canon; the haunting 'Doubts Even Here', ostensibly the sequel to both 'Atmosphere' and 'In A Lonely Place'; and the sequencer-driven 'Chosen Time' which anticipates the follow-up POWER, CORRUPTION AND LIES and the direction the band would pursue throughout the 80s. Not surprising, really, as much of the material was probably written as Joy Division while Ian Curtis was alive and had to be finished without him. ('Ceremony', the debut single, was performed live with Curtis on JD's STILL.) A hint of cynicism concerning the band's audience pervades the album as well, though - - the vocals are treated in more than a few spots so as to mimic Curtis, most notably on 'Dreams Never End' and 'Doubts Even Here' in which Ian's ghost seemingly performs (it's actually Peter Hook). The band was definitely haunted by Curtis: his absence permeates the album. There are some great moments, to be sure - - aside from 'Dreams Never End', 'ICB' lopes merrily along and manages to transcend its own weight with its whoopy synth calls and ascending progression. And 'Doubts Even Here' is darkly beautiful. It's also rather aptly titled- -IS that Curtis? It isn't, but it's easy to imagine it isn't Hook, either. That's the thing about ghosts. They're there but they're not.