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Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols

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Never Mind the Bollocks is a legendary album by the British punk rock band the Sex Pistols. Released October 1977 (see 1977 in music) on Virgin Records, it was the only 'official' album of their career, although after the band split up numerous compilations and bootlegs including The Great Rock And Roll Swindle (the soundtrack to Malcolm McLaren's film loosely based around the Sex Pistols) and Spunk (pirated unreleased versions of basically the same songs as NMTB recorded for A&M Records) were to appear.

The album's release was met by a hail of controversy, and an attempt was made to prosecute a record shop in Manchester for displaying the 'obscene' cover in their window. However the case was overturned when expert witnesses were able to prove that the word "bollocks[?]" was a legitimate old English term originally used to refer to a priest, and that in this context it meant 'nonsense'. Further outrage was sparked by tracks like "God Save the Queen" and "Anarchy in the U.K.", which were perceived as musical assaults on the monarchy and capitalist society, although in the long run such notoriety did little to harm the record's sales in the UK.

Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols is now considered a highly influential 'rock classic'; lyrically and musically it was a violent assault on British foibles and frailties. Lead singer Johnny Rotten's slurred, angry vocals scream about corporate control, intellectual vacuity and political hypocrisy, whilst Steve Jones' multi-layered guitar tracks created a much emulated 'wall of noise' foil to this sneering contempt. Some have however argued that the album is over-produced, and that the Pistols had lost their initial spark of energy and exuberance by the time it was recorded.

It peaked at #106 on Billboard's Pop Albums chart (North America). Though sales were slim throughout the world, the Sex Pistols established a wild reputation in the burgeoning punk scene; they were never able to capitalize on their celebrity, though, with the band falling apart before their career could progress much beyond Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols.

Track listing

  1. "Holidays in the Sun" (Cook/Jones/Rotten/Vicious) - 3:20
  2. "Bodies" (Cook/Jones/Rotten/Vicious) - 3:02
  3. "No Feelings" (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 2:49
  4. "Liar" (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 2:40
  5. "Problems" (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 4:10
  6. "God Save the Queen" (Cook/Jones/Lydon/Matlock) - 3:18
  7. "Seventeen" (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 2:02
  8. "Anarchy in the U.K." (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 3:31
  9. "Submission" (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 4:12
  10. "Pretty Vacant" (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 3:16
  11. "New York" (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 3:05
  12. "E.M.I." (Cook/Jones/Matlock/Rotten) - 3:10

Personnel

  • Johnny Rotten - Vocals
  • Steve Jones - Bass, Guitar
  • Sid Vicious - Bass, Vocals
  • Paul Cook - Drums
  • Bill Price - Producer
  • Chris Thomas - Producer
  • Jamie Reid[?] - Artwork



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