Thursday, November 17, 2022

PIL: The Public Image Is Rotten - Songs From The Heart (5 CD Box Set) 2018


On January 14, 1978, the Sex Pistols played the final show on their American concert tour following the release of Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols, and three days later, the band split up.

John Lydon first traveled to Jamaica, where he and Virgin Records head Richard Branson scouted local reggae talent, and then Lydon returned to London. Lydon soon approached an old friend, Jah Wobble (aka John Wardle), about forming a new band. In May 1978, vocalist Lydon and bassist Wobble recruited one-time Clash guitarist Keith Levene and drummer Jim Walker, and the four began rehearsing. Two months later, Lydon named the band Public Image, adding the Ltd. several weeks later.

Virgin Records quickly signed Lydon's new act, and their debut single, "Public Image," was released in

October 1978. It was a chart success, and the following December, the band dropped their first album, Public Image: First Issue. While the album sold well in England and did well in America as an import, it would remain unreleased in the United States until 2013. The group, in suitably contrary fashion, played their first live show on Christmas Day 1978.

In November 1978, PiL released their second album, an ambitious set called Metal Box, with three 12" discs mastered at 45 rpm packaged in a metal film canister. During the sessions for the album,

Dudanski dropped out of the group, and Martin Atkins took over on drums. While Metal Box was applauded by critics, the package was expensive to produce, and when the group's American label, Warner Bros., released the album in July 1980, it was in a variant version titled Second Edition, a two-LP set in a conventional cardboard sleeve. The American release was followed by PiL's first American tour, where Lydon often verbally sparred with audience members calling out for Sex Pistols' songs.

By the time the third PiL studio album was completed, 1981's minimalist The Flowers of Romance, Jah

Wobble and Martin Atkins were out of the group, and visual artist Jeannette Lee became a bandmember. In May 1981, PiL were invited to play a one-off show in New York City at a club called the Ritz. The group opted to play an especially experimental set, with the stage covered with a screen; video images were projected onto it, and only shadows of the band were visible from behind it.

Another PiL lineup toured the world in support of This Is What You Want ..., featuring Atkins, guitarist Mark Schulz, and keyboardist Jebin Bruni, and Lydon began writing new material on the road. Lydon would scrap this version of PiL for the sessions for their fifth studio album; producer Bill Laswell

recruited an impressive and eclectic group of musicians for the project, including Steve Vai, Ginger Baker, Tony Williams, Ryuichi Sakamoto, and Bernie Worrell. Released in early 1986, Album (the CD and tape versions were titled Compact Disc and Cassette) was a commercial success in the U.K., rising to number 14 on the album charts (the single "Rise" peaked at 11 on the singles charts), and fared well in the United States. After a long round of touring in Europe, the U.K., and South America, Dias parted ways with the group, and in 1993, Lydon issued a statement that he was retiring Public Image Ltd. to pursue a solo career. A career-spanning four-disc box set, Plastic Box, was released in 1999.

After releasing a solo album, publishing his memoirs, staging several reunion tours with the Sex Pistols,

and appearing in a number of TV projects, in 2009 Lydon brought back PiL for a British tour, revealing he bankrolled the project with the money he received from appearing in a commercial for butter in the U.K. This edition of the band included PiL alumni Lu Edmonds and Bruce Smith, as well as bassist Scott Firth. The initial U.K. tour was a success, and a live album drawn from one of the dates, Alife 2009, was issued in 2010 as the group played shows in the United States and Europe.

The band's set at the 2011 Isle of Wight Festival was also issued as a live album before the year was out. In 2012, the group released a studio album, This Is PiL, and they devoted 2013 to touring. 2015

saw the release of What the World Needs Now…, the second studio effort from the revived PiL, and the first time the group made two studio albums in a row with the same lineup. In 2017, a documentary about PiL's long and convoluted story, The Public Image Is Rotten, began playing at international film festivals, and a hefty box set (five CDs and two DVDs) tied into the film's release, The Public Image Is Rotten: Songs from the Heart, was issued in 2018.
[by Mark Deming]

Public Image Limited – The Public Image Is Rotten (Songs From The Heart)
Label: Virgin – RottenPiLCD, UMC – RottenPiLCD
Format:    5 x CD, 2 x DVD Box Set, Compilation
Country: Europe
Released: Jul 20, 2018
Genre: Rock
Style: Post-Punk, Alternative Rock, New Wave



CD1. SINGLES 1978 - 2015


01. Public Image
02. Death Disco
03. Memories
04. Flowers of Romance
05. This Is Not A Love Song
06. Bad Life
07. Rise
08. Home
09. Seattle
10. The Body
11. Disappointed
12. Warrior
13. Don't Ask Me
14. Cruel
15. One Drop
16. Reggie Song
17. Out Of The Woods
18. Double Trouble

MP3 @ 320 Size: 778 MB
Flac  Size: 1.10 GB



01. The Cowboy Song
02. Half Mix / Megga Mix
03. Another
04. Home Is Where The Heart Is
05. Blue Water
06. Question Mark
07. Selfish Rubbish
08. USLS1 (Mix)
09. Turkey Tits


10. Pied Piper
11. Criminal


12. Poptones (BBC Radio 1, 17/12/79)
13. Careering (BBC Radio 1, 17/12/79)
14. Chant (BBC Radio 1, 17/12/79)
15. Cruel (BBC Radio 1, 25/2/92)
16. Acid Drops (BBC Radio 1, 25/2/92)
17. Love Hope (BBC Radio 1, 25/2/92)

MP3 @ 320 Size: 777 MB
Flac  Size: 1.12 GB


CD3. 12" MIXES & DANCE TRACKS       


01. Death Disco (12")
02. Flower Of Romance (Instrumental)
03. This Is Not A Love Song (12")
04. Rise (Bob Clearmountain Mix)
05. Seattle (US Remix 12")
06. The Body (US Remix Extended 12")
07. Disappointed (12")
08. Happy (US Remix 12")
09. Warrior (Extended 12" Mix)
10. Lollipop Opera (from This Is PIL)
11. Shoom (from What The World Needs Now...)

12. Death Disco (Original Monitor Mix)
13. This Is Not A Love Song (12" Remix)

MP3 @ 320 Size: 774 MB
Flac  Size: 1.09 GB



01. Annalisa ("New Mix" - Townhouse 1979)
02. Albatross (Monitor Mix)
03. Careering (Live Paris)
04. Banging the Door (aka The Door) (Alternative Mix - Townhouse 1980)
05. Vampire (Townhouse 1981)
06. Nineteen Eighty One (Original Version - Townhouse 1981)
07. Bad Night (Park South 1983)
08. Things In E (aka Ease) (Alt Laswell Mix)
09. Can You Feel The Fours (Instrumental - Farmhouse 1987)
10. Open & Revolving (aka Spy Thriller) (Alternative Mix - Farmhouse 1987)
11. Kashmir (Instrumental - Renovation Mix 1987)
12. Cajun (Bill Laswell Instrumental 1988)
13. Worry ("Ruff Mix")
14. Think Tank ("Outtake" - Eldorado 1991)

MP3 @ 320 Size: 778 MB
Flac  Size: 1.06 GB



01. Warrior (With Intro)
02. Happy
03. This Is Not A Love Song
04. Home
05. Round
06. Brave New World
07. Same Old Story
08. The Body
09. Open & Revolving
10. Rise
11. Disappointed
12. Public Image
13. Seattle
14. World Destruction

MP3 @ 320 Size: 776 MB
Flac  Size: 1.03 GB



Released with a 72-page hardcover full color book, poster, and photographs in a custom case.
This compilation ℗ 2018 Virgin Records Ltd. © 2018 Virgin Records Ltd.
Made in the EU.
CD2 has a disc mastering error that causes the first 14 seconds of track 9 to appear at the end of track 8, the first 14 seconds of track 10 to appear at the end of track 9, etc. to the end of the disc. In addition, the final track has 14 seconds of silence at the end.
The original CDs have matrix/runout AI23423-01. The replacement/repress CD2 The Public Image Is Rotten (Songs From The Heart) (Disc 2) has matrix/runout AI41670-01. Replacements for the defective CD2 were available upon request from

Other PIL on Urban Aspirines HERE


  1. Great stuff Kostas! Really appreciate this and since Keith's untimely death this is well worth reading and exploring. Have posted links

  2. I got the Rare Earth today. Better than i thought when i listened to it (smart phone).
    Really recommended ! And yesterday the 3rd
    Gore Gore Girls (the 2nd one is still outstandig) Fine Garage Rock as i appreciate it. Both cds with great covers, in contrast to the first where it is ugly.
    Thanks for the good tips !

    I recently (re) discovered Jimi Hendrix and ordered the best bootlegs. With these many no small work. The music is just fantastic.
    " The boxes are really cleaned up".

  3. I will have to listen to this. At least out of curiosity. Has anyone watched Pistols by the way? I don't know how historically accurate the details of the plot are but I think it nailed the general atmosphere of the era.

  4. The whole box of RARE EARTH (69-74) is recommended. Gotta make sure i get it...

  5. Already ordered the box ! Relatively cheap. Thanks Kostas for the great tip Rare Earth.