“New Order’s Gillian Gilbert needs to be celebrated as the synth queen she is,” says Kelly Lee Owens

"Women are often underrated, or their part is dismissed"

Kelly Lee Owens has called for more recognition for New Order‘s Gillian Gilbert, hailing her as a role model and “synth queen”.

The acclaimed Welsh electronic musician, who we recently awarded a five star review for her latest album ‘Inner Song‘, was speaking to NME about the inspiration of New Order’s seminal second album ‘Power, Corruption & Lies‘ when she explained what it meant to see Gilbert behind synths at a young age.

“Having Gillian as the synth queen was fucking amazing, speaking as a woman in music,” Owens told NME. “You can’t be what you can’t see, so to have a woman be a part of something like this and own her part was really inspiring.

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“Women are often underrated, or their part is dismissed. She needs to be celebrated as the synth queen that she is.”

New Order
New Order, 2020 CREDIT: Press

Responding to Owens’ comments, Gilbert told NME: “It’s weird – you never think of your work as part of history or influencing people. It was weird when I joined because nobody expected a girl to be brought into the band. They expected another singer. It got better in the ‘90s, but going to Japan in the ‘80s for a photo shoot was a real shock because they didn’t want to talk to me. They’d say to the male members, ’Can you tell her to move?’ That was how they treated women in them days. I was just there in the background a lot of the time.

“It always felt like you were doing special because not many women were playing keyboards or any instruments. If anyone saw a band like us, it might make them do something.”

‘Power, Corruption & Lies: The 2020 Definitive Edition’ by New Order is out now. As well as sharing new single ‘Be A Rebel‘ and launching a collaborative sportswear range with Adidas, the band also recently released their legendary greatest hits collection ‘Substance’ on streaming services and rescheduled their show at London’s O2 for next year.

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