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Sex Pistols – Never Mind The Bollocks Here’s The Sex Pistols

28 10 2010

Listened: Wednesday October 6

Any true fan of the punk revival in the early nineties would have bought Never Mind The Bollocks. Even if we didn’t really grasp what the first go-round of punk was actually about.

I admit it – the summer before I was a senior in high school, my friend Audrey and I saw the Filthy Lucre tour at Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View – one of the least punk venues in the world! It was a pretty crappy show, as one might expect, but I can say I’ve seen the Sex Pistols. From a lawn.

When I listen to the Sex Pistols with a critical ear I notice that while the bands they influenced such as Rancid and early Green Day were bratty and liked to imagine themselves as rabble-rousers,  the Sex Pistols are simultaneously very aggressive and angry in both lyrics and music, but also catchy and singable. I imagine that’s really difficult to do, even if you’re trying really hard to achieve that balance.

Rancid and Green Day are singable, but at most they come off as just somewhat annoyed or angsty. Maybe the secret ingredient in the Sex Pistols soup is the English class system. However, even other English punk bands of the era did not achieve the anger/catchy balance as well. The Clash came close, but they still couch their anger and disdain in well-crafted music.

I’ve recently seen Johnny Rotten and PiL at Coachella 2010. It sounds impossible, but imagine the aggression of the Sex Pistols turned up to 11. After the first long, very loud song bled into another, we decided it was time to find another stage and get our hearing and sanity back. I have to give the guy props for still busting out like that at the age of 54. But only props. Not my ears. Or sanity.

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28 10 2010
Tweets that mention Sex Pistols – Never Mind The Bollocks Here’s The Sex Pistols « Emily's Albums A to Z -- Topsy.com

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Curse Bot, Emily. Emily said: Sex Pistols – Never Mind The Bollocks Here's The Sex Pistols: http://wp.me/pVPRP-FCMth […]

1 09 2011
Nirvana – Nevermind « Emily's Albums A to Z

[…] somehow very fitting that Nevermind immediately follows Never Mind the Bollocks. The transition is musically […]

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