Here is the Sex Pistol's performing God Save the Queen. I would suggest watching the video, because to me, what they do should be classified Performance Art.
Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs by John Lydon
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I saw John Lydon on the Conan O'Brian show and was impressed with his thoughtful intelligence. He was also promoting this book, so I bought it.
It is difficult to say whether I gained any insight to the Punk movement of the late seventies. After reading this book I conclude that everyone involved was a bunch of illiterate reprobates who were anti-everything, including each other. The Sex Pistols glorified in their disgusting shenanigans on stage, got lots of trash thrown at them while they were performing and, unsurprisingly imploded without hope of recovery only a couple of years after they began.
Most people who are remotely interested in this genre are familiar with Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungeon and their fast track to perdition, but this book only speaks of them peripherally. I did find it ironic that they all hated Nancy so much because of her aggressive, abrasive and immoral character. Uh, isn't that the embodiment of the Punk movement?
But they also hated her for getting Sid hooked on heroin. I personally think his mother, a heroin addict, and Sid's supplier, had something to do with that, although no doubt, Nancy accelerated Sid's race toward destruction, but the reality is, no one takes you where you don't want to go.
The book is narrated by many people, not just Mr. Lydon, and I will give him credit that he does not censor anyone's commentary, even if it does not put him in a good light.
Finally, I have to say I got tired of reading it, because regardless of what middle schoolers and emotionally immature adults think, dropping the F-bomb every other sentence and describing how you trashed people's houses or how many women you were with, is actually a banal read. I started racing through the last quarter just to finish it.
I have already bought Lydon's second book, Anger is an Energy. He was older when he wrote it. Let's hope he's grown up a little as well.
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