Half Mix [Death Disco (12" Mix)] / Megga Mix [Fodderstompf]
Label & Catalogue
Virgin. VS 274 12
Highest UK Chart Position:
Vox - John Lydon
Guitar - Keith Levene
Bass - Jah Wobble
Drums - David Humphrey
(B-side Richard Dudanski)
Picture Sleeve. Limited edition of 15,000
The tracks are re-titled 'Half Mix' / 'Megga Mix' on the label.
The A-side [Part
1] is an extended 12" mix of 'Death Disco', titled as 'Half
Mix'. The B-side [Part 2] is a new re-recorded version of 'Fodderstompf'
titled as 'Megga Mix'.
The little known David
Humphrey plays drums on both tracks. The B-side is the only track
to be released from the scrapped Warner Brothers re-recording of
the first album. Both tracks were unique to this 12" release
until they were included on 'Plastic Box' in 1999.
Originally titled 'Swan Lake' after the bastardised guitar line
in the track; the lyrics were written by John Lydon for his dying
The track was first rehearsed in December 1978 while Jim Walker
was still in the band, but was not recorded until David Humphrey
joined in 1979.
The confusion over the
song titles meant that when Belgium artist Arbeid Adelt covered
the B-side he titled it as 'Death Disco' rather than 'Fodderstompf'.
The track later became something of a cult classic; and has featured
on numerous dance mix compilations, most notably '2 Many dj's, Soul
The full unedited monitor
mix of 'Death Disco' later appeared as an audio extra on the John
Lydon 'Best of British £1 Notes' DVD.
A promo video featuring
Richard Dudanski on drums was shot for the single.
Produced by 'Public Image Ltd'
Engineered by Nick Cook & Hugh Padgham
The Manor, Oxfordshire
Sleeve paintings/drawings by John Lydon. The 12" sleeve is
slightly different to the 7" release.
I used 'Swan Lake' for the melody. The reason it was called 'Death
Disco' was because it was about John's mum. The person he was singing
about, 'seeing in your eyes,' was his mother dying. That's what
John was singing about very passionately, I might add. From my point
of view, I was just trying to do something with the music. I didn't
know what he was singing about at the time – he was just:
"It's 'Death Disco' Keith, that's what it is!"
- Keith Levene, Perfect Sound Forever 2001
'No Birds Do Sing' is
a line from a poem by Keats. I just borrowed a bit of it because
it suited this particular rant about suburbia.
- John Lydon, 'Plastic Box' sleevenotes 1999