Live Review: Public Image, Town & Country, 3rd May, 1992

"Back by popular demand," cackles the man who needs no introduction, John Lydon. PiL are back in the capital city, playing to a "typical, fuckin' sunday night, London audience". And, believe me, some of these glib bastards need a good whiplashing from Lydon's acerbic tongue.

The band provide a sophisticated, yet potent, platform for the cockney Irishman. An image of a Japanese tourist bus whizzing by on a seven wonders of London tour adds a touch of surreal humor.

Some of the frenzied, dog collar mob at the front start projecting their gob towards the stage. The spirit of '76 punk timewarp scenario. Now Sid Vicious might still have appreciated it (well hardly much scope for development there) but Lydon and guitarist John McGeoch, in particular, are less than amused.

"Would the rest of you kindly put those cunts in hospital for me", asks the sensible old rouge. McGeogh, who's already had beer thrown at him, is ready to plunge into the trouble zone to sort it out. The Scottish guitarist starts to channel his anger away from the gobshites and into the music thereby intensifying the level of his and the band's performance.

Luck's Up, Cruel and others from the current record blend in effortlessly with the likes of the majestic and anthemic Rise. And, just for good measure, an old Sex Pistols classic, EMI, is thrown is thrown in during the rousing encores. Even the "Tories" seated upstairs are on their feet. PiL- proof positive that old anarchists won't let you down.

Mark Liddell
July 1992
Riff Raff
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  1. PiL during their alternative metal era. That What Is Not is a cool record that gets overlooked.