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The Sex Pistols’ Single ‘Anarchy In The UK.’

The Sex Pistols’ Single ‘Anarchy In The UK.’

Above Photo: Anarchic Wall Wit.

The word “Anarchy” was made Punk-famous when The Sex Pistols released their single Anarchy in the UK in late 1976, when they were signed to EMI Records. It means living in a state of lawlessness without a central authority.

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Anarchy means Freedom. Anarchist graffiti on a wall in a Punk’s flat. In the photo are Siouxsie Sioux (first left) and Steve Severin (upside down), of Siouxsie and the Banshees. (Ray Stevenson)

The Pistols’ song was a call to arms to disaffected British youth, although it was reviled by the mainstream music and cultural press, especially following the band’s legendary foul-mouthed debut on a British TV show a month before the single appeared.

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The Sex Pistols play live at the 100 Club in London in 1977.

It was the Sex Pistols’ only EMI release, as they were promptly fired from the label after their Bill Grundy appearance, an event I recount in my Punk and New Wave memoir, Bombed Out!

I also really liked the B side of the single, I Wanna Be Me, which, when I first heard it back then, left me in musical shock, comparing it to the usual mainstream shit in the charts. A raw, threatening guitar intro and still a classic Punk song: I was an immediate Punk convert.

The Sex Pistols on their ill-fated US tour.

The Sex Pistols on their ill-fated US tour.

In retrospect, the band couldn’t have devised a better single or more appropriate message to propel Punk into Tabloid Outrage than their Anarchy single, which was quickly followed by their  even more infamous Anarchy tour, which I wrote about here:

Photos: The Sex Pistols’ Anarchy Tour in 1976.

Buy a signed copy of Bombed Out! here: http://www.bombedoutpunk.com/buybook.php

There’s some great original Sex Pistols’ footage in this You Tube video of Anarchy In The UK:

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or signed paperback copies from:
News From Nowhere, Bold Street Liverpool; Waterstones, Liverpool 1 or Pritchards, Moor Lane, Crosby.

 www.bombedoutpunk.com © Peter Alan Lloyd

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