Saturday, July 03, 2010
Public Image Ltd. "album"
I've updated Public Image Ltd.'s 1986 album artwork especially for your iPod or other portable player. This seems appropriate since the collection of songs known as "album" on LP, "cassette" on cassette, or "compact disc" on CD is currently available as an mp3 download, but appears to be out-of-print on CD. Rhino recently reissued album on LP and did quite a nice job of it to my ears. Elektra's vinyl tended to be quite noisy toward the end of the LP era, so it is good to finally have a really nice sounding copy of this on LP.
I think this is the only album I own that features Steve Vai on guitar, and I still find it really weird that Lydon played with Ginger Baker, considering that in 1981 NME published an "April fool" announcement that Baker had joined PiL. Despite the strange (one could argue inappropriate) cast of musicians producer Bill Laswell chose to surround Lydon, album holds up. No, it's not as adventurous as Metal Box or Flowers Of Romance, but it is a strong set of songs and nice time capsule of the sound of "alternative rock" circa 1986.
Of course it's well known that John Lydon nicked the concept of a "generic" album from Flipper, whose 1982 debut was called Generic Flipper (or possibly Album or Album Generic Flipper).
Anyway, while Flipper obviously did it first, it should be pointed out that from a design and conceptual standpoint, Lydon did it better. And Flipper did get some measure of revenge by titling a later release Public Flipper Ltd.