Sex Pistols’ Johnny Rotten and Glen Matlock break down every track on ‘Never Mind the Bollocks,’ as the album turns 40.
For almost a year, the Sex Pistols had been the focus of sensationalist media coverage. The on Thames Television’s tea-time Today programme stoked a moral panic at the end of 1976, precipitating the cancellation of gigs, the band’s expulsion from their EMI record deal, and lurid tabloid tales of punk’s ‘.
The release of God Save the Queen in May 1977, issued to and wrapped in a Jamie Reid-designed sleeve that defaced the Queen, further upped the ante. Faux-moral outrage now gave way to faux-patriotic outrage, as the record nevertheless pushed towards the top of the charts. So the story goes, it was only prevented from reaching the number one spot by the .
In its wake, the band’s promotional jaunt up the Thames was stopped by police, while Johnny Rotten and Reid were attacked in the street. In punk and the Pistols, the media had found a cultural expression that seemingly embodied the language of crisis and decline that was shaping perceptions of the 1970s. The ‘no future’ that Rotten warned of at the end of God Save the Queen as he surveyed the ‘mad parade’ of jubilee pomp amid ongoing fears of economic collapse and social decay, had the air of prophecy.
And yet, just a few months later, the Sex Pistols in the US and punk’s cultural form – always a jumble of clashing symbols and contested meanings – would splinter into various subsects.
Shock! Horror! Outrage!
Left behind, in the case of the Pistols, were just four singles and an album, before the processes of commodification were revealed and exploited in the post-Pistols packaging of what became ‘. Looking back, therefore, Never Mind the Bollocks perhaps serves best as a testament: an artefact that affirms the Sex Pistols existence and the cultural ruptures they provoked. Continue reading
Sex Pistols‘ Steve Jones has spoken to NME ahead of the punk band’s upcoming deluxe edition of their seminal ‘Never Mind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols’ album. Buy Sex Pistols merchandise here The iconic group’s classic album will be reissued to celebrate the record’s 40th anniversary. Label USM/UMC has announced that the out-of-print deluxe edition of the album, which was originally released in 2012, will now be re-released on December 1. You can pre-order it here. As well as this, a new book called The Sex Pistols 1977: The Bollocks Diaries is out on October 26. It tells the story of the “chaos and creation” of the band’s famous record, as told by the Pistols themselves. Buy it here. Surrounding these two releases, Sex Pistols guitarist Jones spoke to NME about the legacy of ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’, saying: “We didn’t really have any expectations and that’s probably why it is still talked about”. He also revealed why he wouldn’t reunite with the Sex Pistols again in the future and what he thinks about John Lydon’s controversial Donald Trump comments.
Read NME‘s Q&A with Sex Pistols’ Steve Jones below:
It’s been 40 years since ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’. When you were recording the album, did you think you’d still be talking about the record four decades later?
“No, not at all, you never know that. We were just doing it, we didn’t really have any expectations and that’s probably why it is still talked about – because it wasn’t preconceived, we just didn’t know where it could go. It wasn’t like a band who went to a record label and the record label said ‘I don’t hear any singles here’, you know? We were just coming from a different place where it was more about ‘this is what we do and we want to get it on to tape’. It’s just one of those things — short lived, but it’s quite amazing really that forty years later people are still talking about it.”
What do you think the record’s legacy has been?
“I think it’s very inspirational to other bands and it’s just a little time capsule really.” What other albums do you think we’ll still be listening to in 40 years time? “David Bowie’s ‘The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars’.”
Any modern albums? You appeared in Arctic Monkeys’ ‘R U Mine’ video. Are they the kind of band that will span generations like Sex Pistols have?
“I’m not sure, because I’m not a young person, they have different feelings towards Alex Turner than I do. I think Arctic Monkeys are a great band. I even like the Last Shadow Puppets last album (‘Everything That You’ve Come To Expect’) better than Arctic Monkeys. I think he’s a talented guy, Alex Turner, and when Alex and Miles Kane get together they come up with good stuff.”
Would you say grime is the new punk?
“I don’t know what that is, I’m too old… Like chav music? Well, it’s good that young people are looking …Continue reading » Source: Sex Pistols’ Steve Jones on ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’, reunions and John Lydon’s Trump comments – NME
Background: After a long hiatus of being out of print, Alex Cox’s punk-rock cult hit Sid & Nancy (Spine #20) returns to the Criterion Collection. The film was Cox’s first to be included in the main collection, preceding Walker (Spine #423) and Repo Man (Spine #654).Story: After a fateful meeting, Sex Pistols bass player Sid Vicious (Gary Oldman) and American junkie Nancy Spungen (Chloe Webb) begin a star-crossed, mutually destructive romance [ . . . ]
Read full review: Criterion Discovery: Sid and Nancy