Excellent recording of the Sex Pistols, recorded at the Longhorn Ballroom in Asbury Park, NJ, on January 10th, 1978.
The Sex Pistols may have only been together for two years in the late '70s, but they changed the face of popular music. Through their raw, nihilistic singles and violent performances, the band revolutionized the idea of what rock & roll could be. In England, the group was considered dangerous to the very fabric of society and was banned across the country; in America, they didn't have the same impact, but countless bands in both countries were inspired by the sheer sonic force of their music, while countless others were inspired by their independent, do-it-yourself ethics. Even if they didn't release any singles by themselves, there was an implicit independence in the way they played their music and handled their career.
While mostly accurate, dismissing Never Mind the Bollocks as merely a series of loud, ragged midtempo rockers with a harsh, grating vocalist and not much melody would be a terrible error. Already anthemic songs are rendered positively transcendent by Johnny Rotten's rabid, foaming delivery. His bitterly sarcastic attacks on pretentious affectation and the very foundations of British society were all carried out in the most confrontational, impolite manner possible. Most imitators of the Pistols' angry nihilism missed the point: underneath the shock tactics and theatrical negativity were social critiques carefully designed for maximum impact. Never Mind the Bollocks perfectly articulated the frustration, rage, and dissatisfaction of the British working class with the establishment, a spirit quick to translate itself to strictly rock & roll terms. the Pistols paved the way for countless other bands to make similarly rebellious statements, but arguably none were as daring or effective.
There is no other band like this: The Sex Pistols have changed the history of pop music and turned it upside down. 36 years after their debut album the echoes on that release are still very easy to recognize in the current music. The Many Faces Of Sex Pistols is a unique collection, which is showcasing lots of new shapes of this great band…
Long before punk was relegated to slogans on a Hot Topic T-shirt or a watered down pop craze with the mall crowd, bands like the Sex Pistols represented themes of rising up from the underground, rebellion, and at times, all out anarchy. Though the act only released one proper studio project in the form of Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols, it's become a legendary slice of the genre as it was truly meant to be represented and once again takes the focal point of the current incarnation's latest DVD. There'll Always Be An England celebrates the thirtieth anniversary of that acclaimed album with John Lydon leading the aging (but still entertaining) pack on top of his game.