only anarchists are pretty

Content tagged as only anarchists are pretty.

ROTTEN: NO IRISH, NO BLACKS, NO DOGS by JOHN LYDON: Reviewed 1994

ROTTEN: NO IRISH, NO BLACKS, NO DOGS by JOHN LYDON: Reviewed 1994

“With the Sex Pistols we were hated, absolutely despised. There was no audience there at all to any great extent. We sold a few records in a small banana republic called Britain.” – John Lydon John Lydon -- better known as the sneering Sex Pistols frontman Johnny Rotten -- enjoys lying. He says as much in his...

THE JOE STRUMMER STORY, a documentary by MIKE PARKINSON (DV1 DVD/Southbound)

THE JOE STRUMMER STORY, a documentary by MIKE PARKINSON (DV1 DVD/Southbound)

With each passing year the myth and power of Joe Strummer seems to grow as his story has its contradictions and inconveniences ironed out. His wilderness years after the Clash are all but ignored and increasingly it seems as if Strummer moved seamlessly from agit-prop rocker to senior statesman who took his message of tolerance and commitment to...

The Flys: Love and a Molotov Cocktail (1978)

The Flys: Love and a Molotov Cocktail (1978)

1977 was a confusing year in Britain: pub-rockers Dr Feelgood were at an all-time peak, the Sex Pistols, the Clash and others advanced the punk agenda, and off on the margins were power-pop bands which hadn't quite seen the changes coming. The four-piece Flys out of Coventry -- a little distant from the London scene -- were in the latter...

Various Artists: The Great Rock'n'Roll Swindle (EMI)

Various Artists: The Great Rock'n'Roll Swindle (EMI)

Although very different, Brian Eno and Malcolm McLaren had one trait in common: after the event both would attribute philosophical and/or political meaning to something they had done. In the case of the late McLaren, the prime mover behind the Sex Pistols -- Johnny Rotten/John Lydon denies he was ever their "manager" -- would have...

JAH WOBBLE INTERVIEWED (1996): Spiritual traveller stay-at-home

JAH WOBBLE INTERVIEWED (1996): Spiritual traveller stay-at-home

The message had a kind of road-to-Damascus ring to it: “Jah will meet you at Bethnal Green tube station next to the ticket counter.” And there he is: Jah in jeans and a sweater. Not quite what Rastafarians have in mind. But, accidentally or not, this child of Stepney’s working class streets has chosen an appropriate...

Jah Wobble: Welcome to My World (30 Hertz/Southbound)

Jah Wobble: Welcome to My World (30 Hertz/Southbound)

Jah Wobble has been one of the most interesting and innovative musical explorers of the past few decades but, as I discovered in '96 at the time of this interview – he does it mostly without leaving home. Travel is for the middle-classes he said and a working-class geezer like himself, well . . . Anyway he'd done the touring...

Public Image Limited; Death Disco (1979)

Public Image Limited; Death Disco (1979)

Described by Peter Shapiro in Turn the Beat Around; The Secret History of Disco as "perhaps the most uncompromising record ever to make the Top 20 chart [in Britain]" this extraordinary piece is not just musically demanding but is also John Lydon dealing with the death of his mother -- in a warped dance/disco song. Curiously this...

Elton Motello: Jet Boy Jet Girl (1978)

Elton Motello: Jet Boy Jet Girl (1978)

Most people have heard Belgian faux-punk Plastic Bertrand's one-off single Ca Plane pour moi of '77 (see clip). Fewer will have heard this bastard half-sister version by the UK rock'n'roll punk band Elton Motello (also the adopted name of singer Alan Ward) out of South London around the same period. But the backstory is a little...

Various Artists: Kris Needs Presents Dirty Water; The Birth of Punk Attitude (Future Police/Southbound)

Various Artists: Kris Needs Presents Dirty Water; The Birth of Punk Attitude (Future Police/Southbound)

This excellent, wayward and musically diverse double disc is like a mix tape/vanity project from a friend who just wants to get down his/her favourite raw rock'n'roll/mad attitude songs in the one place for you, the stuff that has been inspirational and still stands up. Here UK rock journalist (Zigzag) and sometimes band frontman Needs takes...

Gang of Four: Content (Growland)

Gang of Four: Content (Growland)

There's enjoyable nostalgia -- for example the Hollies who, against expectation delivered a fine show some weeks ago -- and then there are old bands who still sound relevant, like Children's Hour who delivered a deafening but impressively irritable set at the Auckland Laneway's Festival just days before the Hollies served up their classic...

The Scavengers; The Scavengers (2003 vinyl issue of '78 sessions)

The Scavengers; The Scavengers (2003 vinyl issue of '78 sessions)

We all have musical moments written into our autobiographies. The emblems afterwards -- the album, concert ticket or scar beneath the eye -- are inadequate to convey the emotion you experienced, whether it was when Tina Turner belted out your favourite-ever song to you personally (and 35,000 others), or when you got nailed at Zwines in...

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Thom Burton of Wilberforces

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Thom Burton of Wilberforces

Thom Burton is the mainman in the Auckland-based band Wilberforces (clearly he grew with Under the Mountain) and their stark, bristly sound is captured on their second album Vipassana (named for the meditation technique I guess, although a more meloow Barton wouldn't make much sense). He takes time out to answer the Famous Elsewhere...

Jah Wobble, The Edge, Holger Czukay: Snake Charmer, reprise (1983)

Jah Wobble, The Edge, Holger Czukay: Snake Charmer, reprise (1983)

Yes, it was the Eighties as you can hear from the first stuttering synths on this overwrought supersession. Bassist Jah Wobble was post-Public Image Limited, The Edge from U2 clearly at a loose end (although a decade away from letting go on Achtung Baby) and multi-instrumentlist Czukay from Can probably quite liked the idea of getting into a...

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