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4.4 out of 5 stars31
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 7 July 2006
Mystifyingly, Public Image Limited are still underrated to this day. John Lydon's more famous band, the Sex Pistols, are still given more attention, but this, in my opinion, is a lot more innovative and expansive. Also, the other musicians, such as Keith Levene and Jah Wobble, were far more talented musically than the 'musicians' in the sex pistols.

From the outset, John Lydon was determined to create something unique and original, which he did with aplomb on songs such as 'Public Image', in 1978. It is worthy of note that PiL's first album was being worked on even before the Sex Pistols had split - such is John Lydon's drive and vision. However, track two on this album is definitely one of the stand-out tracks, 'Death Disco'. This is an irrestible slice of disco fused with punk fused with lord knows what else! It honestly does sound like nothing else! Lydon's distinctive and sinister sounding vocal compliments the music perfectly, and the whole thing is executed marvellously.

'Careering' gives off more sinister vibes, sounding oppressive yet compulsive, but most importantly, like nothing else which surfaced in the post-punk era. Track six is yet another fantastic song, 'This Is Not A Love Song'. For a man who was supposedly so inaccessible during the punk era, this is a mightly infectious song which is actually quite perfect for dancing to. Lydon's vocal is also distinctive and commanding. What a shame that so few have investigated music as excellent as this!

'Rise' features some great lyrics, great musicianship and strong vocals from Lydon. It is often forgotten just what a great songwriter John Lydon is, but this proves that he is extremely accomplished, and also original.

The rest here plays out to the same high standards, though PiL did make a mercifully brief foray into dance music at some point in the nineties, but that can be easily forgiven. Songs such as 'Rules and Regulations' and 'Don't Ask Me' are both infectious and unusual, but deceptively poppy. It is quite remarkable that anyone could have a career which spans the genres of punk, post-punk, pop, alternative and experimental, but John Lydon is that man. If you are looking for a visionary, and a true individual, look no further than this album. It is an essential purchase for all individuals, and music fans.
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on 30 December 2009
If im not mistaked , the first public image ltd compilation released in 1990 , having purchased this with the high expectation , i was left pondering as to why there was such an awful sax playing along during THIS IS NOT A LOVE SONG a far cry from the origianl version i rememberd in 1983, sounding more like relax by frankie goes to hollywood in places .
RISE sounds like a 12 inch remix version , not the original 7 inch version released in 1986 and so i wonder why the record company decided not to inform the buyer of the different versions on this cobbled together compilation when it was released .
The first five tracks appear to be the originals from arguably pils most interesting and creative period before they appeared to fall victim to the eighties record producer . awash with synths and overdubs .

Do yourself a favour and purchase the albums between 1979 -86 or better still buy the JOHN LYDON - THE BEST OF BRITISH .... compilation .
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on 24 March 2013
I have come late to John Lydon et al through PIL's most recent and superior album This is Pil; the title 'Greatest Hits, So Far'. PIL get better as time goes on and so does this album, so that by the time they get to track 5 things start to warm up. The Warrior is, in my opinion, a contender for PIL's best track to date, with lots and lots of energy. Worth owning but not before buying This is PiL first.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 24 December 2015
Public Image Ltd's first Greatest Hits package and probably still the best covers their 1978 inception from the eponymous Public Image until 1990 with the ubiquitous new track Don't Ask Me. Early tracks highlight post-punk with later tracks showing developing dance music leanings - albeit with Lydon's unique lyrical sensibility. Three tracks from landmark album Metal Box set the album off to a great start, especially Careering, with Jah Wobble's insanely deep bass underpinning everything. Much here is experimental, with Flowers of Romance introducing fiddle to the mix. The first foray into aa disco beat rears its head on This Is Not A Love Song, a theme continued through later tracks like Rules and Regulations. The changes in part are brought about but the shifting lineup, with Lydon the only constant member. Despite this the development is pleasing and the whole hangs together well. A fine round up.
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on 3 March 2016
For me personally not the best selection of hits as such.
Ok but that's about it
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on 7 January 2014
Classic PIL.As someone else stated a couple of poor tracks but the rest are excellent.The brilliant Death Disco of Lydon losing his mother at the time and the classic poppy song at the end of don't ask me.
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on 14 April 2016
John Lydon is like nobody else, a total individual, and his music is just the same. His music is genius, great band.
The music is full of great lyrics, and great tunes, all with great character.
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VINE VOICEon 30 May 2004
Public Image Ltd were a band who passed me by at the time of their original recorded output apart from "Public Image" which I bought on 7" vinyl and still own to this day and is undoubtedly one of the greatest singles ever released. It's a stunning fusion of aqueous bass and wind tunnel guitars allied to Lydons sneering perspicacious vocal. Why it's taken me so long to investigate them further is something that even I can't fathom but I've remedied that by purchasing this neat summation of their career and it's a very fine CD although a handful of tracks are flaccid bass heavy cod funk workouts. "Memories", "Careering" and "Warrior" are all guilty of this lazy approach.
The early material is based exclusively around those burbling fluid bass lines and skeletal guitar arrangements." Death Disco" which is about the death of Lydons mother is catharsis through music, his vocal is at the very edge of ragged yet it's carried along by the protean music. It's a brilliant track. "The Flowers of Romance" centres on tribal drumming and coarse stalactites of violin. Startling bursts of brass punctuate "This is not a love Song" which is essentially that phrase repeated over and over again yet is a wonderful song, love song or not. It also boasts an irrepressibly funky bass line. "Rise" almost enters pop territory thanks to its sing along chorus while the guitars have a commercial sheen but its last minute with Lydon screaming "Anger is energy" while distorted noise wails around him thankfully adds an acerbic edge. "Home" has a guitar solo of all things is still a compelling mix of heavy duty percussion and sudden bursts of exotic far eastern walls of sound. "Seattle" and "The Body" are further signifiers to a more mainstream direction for the band with more conventional song structures and the introduction of backing vocalists on "The Body". "Rules and Regulations" reminds me bizarrely of Simple Minds circa "New Gold Dream" with its auric splendour. "Disappointed" has more of those backing vocals who add extra melodic impetus to the titanic chorus; it's a glorious pop song. "Don't ask me" is a revelation if you love rapturous pop music which I happen to .This is definitely a wonderful pop song with a swaggering melody and well a sense of joy de vie you just would never equate with John Lydon.
Traditionalists will much prefer the older material which featured the original line up and while that produces some brilliant material the later songs where Lydon for want of a better term lightens up is staggeringly fine too with a keen sense of pop dynamics and an ear very much cocked for melody. Like I said it's only let down by three weak tracks. Take those away and this is as good a summation of a bands output as you'll get. Most of the songs on here won't have been hits but they bloody well should have been. As I said before If only I'd investigated them earlier.
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on 12 June 2013
I'm so happy these cd's are still around. I'm getting it for a life long pistols fan. Hope she's as stoked as me! Hehe!
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on 22 November 2013
I miss PIL first time around, dog latin is wonderful to provide filler when amazon assumes brevity is more than unacceptable
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