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158) PIL Happy

John Lydon has always been a strange one for me, no doubt he has produced some excellent music, and you cannot fault him for looking after his wife and speaking of their love and 2023 has been a rough year for him with the loss of his beloved wife and manager and best friend John Rambo Stevens.

 

However, in print or in interviews as he talks over everyone, dismisses others and lectures, does not speak,  I find him incredibly boring.

 

There has been some excellent PIL albums and many a line-up change. PIL were a five piece here who had come together to tour and stayed together for a few albums. In fact, Lydon, Edmonds, and Smith are still there now. Bassist Dias left long ago and sadly John McGeoch is no longer with us.

 

The album is only eight songs long and sounds to me as if PIL were pushing towards a stadium sound. It has its moments but is not entirely successful.

 

Lead single and opener Seattle is magic, a great single I bought it the day it came out a wonderful catchy riff and Lydon weaving his way in and out, I thought would be a big hit, I was wrong,

 

Rules and Regulations arrives all heavy riffs and drumming and starts well until we hit the chorus and female backing singers take over, Lydon is absent. The Body is about abortion but again the backing singers take the chorus, but this has a bit more about it.

 

Hard Times opens with some interesting guitar chords from McGeoch and Edmonds and Lydon seems more engaged and I love the start of Open and Revolving with the simple words of “And now” from Lydon.

 

Fat Chance Hotel is a wonderful end. Seven minutes of chopping guitars over a groove and Lydon distinctive vocals stretched perfectly over the verse and chorus, why was there not more of this?

 

Maybe a missed opportunity with the talent on display but certainly has its moments and whenever I hear Lydon on record, I warm to him all over again.

 

6.25/10

 

GIVE IT A STREAM: Fat Chance Hotel

 

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