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Music

John Lydon distances himself from the new Sex Pistols compilation

John Lydon has spoken in response to the recently announced Sex Pistols Original Recordings, a collection of tapes that shows his band at their earliest and most animal. The singer isn’t happy with the release and issued a statement on his Facebook page that shows his disapproval of the release.

Lydon’s Facebook page directly called out Universal Music Group: “For the avoidance of any doubt,” the statement reads, “John Lydon has not approved this compilation and does not endorse or support it. He has not approved the artwork or tracklisting. He and his team were not involved in producing this compilation and consider it substandard compared to previous Universal releases since 2012.”

The singer has been critical of projects in recent times regarding his band. He was disappointed to hear about a television series that shows the band at their most explosive and influential during the late 1970s. The singer has said that Danny Boyle‘s series will be “destructive”, and claims he only found out about the series only hours before it was announced to the public at large. Guitarist Steve Jones and drummer Paul Cook had granted Pistol, the name the series is going to be released as, permission to use the band’s music.

Jones, Cook and Lydon stand as the band’s core lineup, although the group have used two bassists: Glen Matlock and Sid Vicious. Matlock is credited on the majority of Sex Pistols tunes, except for ‘Bodies’ and ‘Holidays In The Sun’ which feature Vicious’ surname in his place.

Matlock criticised Lydon in 2021, particularly for his stance on Brexit. The songwriting bassist strongly opposes Brexit and said he found it strange that a “Pad” would consider supporting Nigel Farage. Although born in London, Lydon is effectively Irish, as is evident from his 1994 memoir, Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs.

He did clarify in 2013 that he is London working-class, although he travels under an Irish passport, and frequently visited relatives as a child in his mother’s native County Cork.

Lydon currently fronts Public Image Ltd., a band built up from the ashes of The Sex Pistols. Public Image Ltd’s most recent album, What The World Needs Now.., was released in 2015.