Sex Pistols:
Fully Illustrated Book & Interview Disc

Andrea Thorn


Running Time: 24:58 mins

review by Scott M, August 1997 (First published F&F 3)
©1997 / F&F Publishing

I wasn't sure whether to review this as a CD or a book, as it's basically a 120 page CD sized book that also includes a 25 minute interview CD with John Lydon. The interview was recorded at the time of Lydon's book launch in 1994 by some American journalist. It's a good quality recording but judging from the amount of hissing I'd say it was recorded straight from a tape recorder. It's also a good interview, the journalist has no hang ups and asks some decent questions about his book, the (still!) forthcoming Pistols documentary and his proposed solo album on Atlantic! There's also a classic quote about a possible Pistols reunion "I don't want to be up there looking like some 40 year old tosser!"

The accompanying book has been written by a freelance music journalist who apparently regularly contributes to Melody Maker, so I thought 'here we go hatchet job'! But with the exception of a couple of silly mistakes its actually ok, if a bit basic. I don't know about you, but I'm bored shitless with biographies about the band 76-80. Its all been said a million times before and nothing new ever comes to light. And why does every biography about the band treat you as if you know nothing about the Pistols or the music scene in the 70's? I can understand it in a more general book, but you wouldn't be buying it if you didn't know anything about the band. And why does every biography gloss over the solo stuff , because personally I find that far more interesting.

The book also contains a classic piece of British music journalist egg on the face! The author dismisses Glen and John's books as "cash ins" and goes on to (rightfully in most cases) slag all the other Punk book and CD cash in's, but that's exactly what this package is! Never mind irony, it's typical hypocritical bollocks.

The book also contains some great colour photos (including some of PiL, the Rich Kids and the Neurotic Outsiders), a basic discography, a (largely snidey) Shepherds Bush review and a chronology of important dates.

On the front cover it states its unauthorised but considering its been done in "association" with Virgin Publishing and Westwood One audio products, its a lot more official than most of the stuff around. And at under £7 in most record shops its decent value, but still strictly for collectors only.


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