After the inevitable demise of the fast-living Sex Pistols, Johnny Lydon (or Johnny Rotten, if you prefer) assembled a much more satisfying and durable band that went by the name of Public Image, Ltd, or PiL, for short. In that band, Johnny recruited bassist, Jah Wobble (who went on to his own measure of success with his Invaders Of The Heart band afterwards), guitarist, Keith Levene, and drummer, Jim Walker. PiL’s first album out the door was First Issue. Released in 1978, First Issue had strong fan acceptance in the UK. By the next album, Metal Box, which came uniquely packaged, even the US had a remote interest pushing that album into the charts in the Top200, still not a bad place to be.

Over time, PiL released ten albums, the last being the 2015 issue, What The World Needs Now… But their most influential and accepted issues were easily their first seven. From First Issue, to Album (1986), to 9 (1989), Public Image, Ltd held sway over the UK fans.

On October 28, Virgin UK will reissue Metal Box, and Album, in remastered and expanded sets that will include a wealth of bonus additions. From b-sides, unreleased mixes, BBC session tracks, demos, outtakes, and live performance tracks, both titles will be welcomed with more material to fully realize their 30th Anniversaries.

Both titles will be released on CD, DD, and vinyl LP sets.

Metal Box – Public Image, Ltd (PiL)

PiL Metal Box

CD1 (Remastered original album)
01. Albatross
02. Memories
03. Swan Lake (Death Disco)
04. Poptones
05. Careering
06. No Birds Do Sing
07. Graveyard
08. The Suit
09. Bad Baby
10. Socialist
11. Chant
12. Radio 4

CD2 (B-sides, Mixes, Radio Sessions)
01. Death Disco (7” edit)
02. Death Disco 12”
03. Half Mix / Megga Mix (b-side)
04. Death Disco – BBC TV, Top of the Pops July 12.7.72
05. Memories 12”
06. Another (b-side)
07. Poptones – BBCRadio 1, John Peel Sessions 1979
08. Careering – BBC Radio 1, John Peel Sessions 1979
09. Chant – BBC Radio 1, John Peel Sessions 1979
10. Poptones – BBC TV, Old Grey Whistle Test 5/2/80 (audio)
11. Careering – BBC TV, Old Grey Whistle Test 5/2/80 (audio)
12. Pied Piper (rare compilation-only track)

CD3 (Unreleased Mixes)
01. Poptones (version 3) (unreleased)
02. Swan Lake (monitor mix)
03. Albatross (monitor mix) (alternative mix)
04. Swan Lake (“master”) (alternative mix) (unreleased)
05. Unknown INST Jam 1 (“Chant”) (unreleased)
06. Unknown Jam 2 (“Megachant”) (unreleased)
07. Music from an Oven (aka Memories) (unreleased)
08. Radio 4 (“symphony suite”) (unreleased)
09. Home is Where The Heart is (original mix) (unreleased)
10. Unknown INST 2 (unreleased)

CD4 (Live at Manchester, Russell’s Club (The Factory) 18/6/79 – unreleased)
01. Chant
02. Swan Lake (aka Death Disco)
03. Memories
04. Public Image
05. Annalisa
06. No Birds Do Sing

Album – Public Image, Ltd (PiL)

PiL - Album

CD1 (Remastered Original Album)
01. FFF
02. Rise
03. Fishing
04. Round
05. Bags
06. Home
07. Ease

CD2 (Live at Brixton Academy 27.5.86 – unreleased)
01. Kashmir
02. FFF
03. Low Life
04. Fishing
05. Poptones
06. Pretty Vacant
07. Banging the Door
08. Flowers of Romance
09. Bags
10. Round
11. Home
12. Public Image
13. Rise
14. Annalisa

CD3: (Mixes, Outtakes)
01. Things in E (aka Ease) (alternative Laswell mix) (1986) (unreleased)
02. Rise (7” edit)
03. Rise (instrumental)
04. Home (7” edit)
05. Rise (Bob Clearmountain remix)
06. Home – BBC TV, Old Grey Whistle Test 20/5/86 (audio)
07. Round – BBC TV, Old Grey Whistle Test 20/5/86 (audio)
Bonus Tracks
01. Time Zone – World Destruction (12”)
02. Time Zone – World Destruction (Industrial Remix)

CD4 (Original 1985 Album demos)
01. Animal (unreleased)
02. Black Rubber Bags (aka Bags) (unreleased)
03. European Cars (aka Round) (unreleased)
04. Fairwell Fairweather Friend (aka FFF) (unreleased)
05. Pearls Before Swine (aka Fishing) (unreleased)
06. Things in E (aka Ease) (instrumental) (unreleased)
07. Ben Hur (unreleased) (instrumental) (unreleased)
08. Cats (unreleased) (instrumental) (unreleased)
09. Have a Nice Day (unreleased) (instrumental) (unreleased)
10. Untitled 3 (unreleased) (instrumental) (unreleased)
11. Pearls Before Swine (aka Fishing) (alternate mix (incomplete) (unreleased)

For me, I will never forget the chaos that Johnny Lydon created on American Bandstand. He effectively pissed off Dick Clark, something that I didn;t think could possibly happen. But Johnny Lydon pulled it off effortlessly. Plus, I loved these albums!


By MARowe