England's Dreaming: Anarchy, Sex Pistols, Punk Rock, and Beyond

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9780312087746: England's Dreaming: Anarchy, Sex Pistols, Punk Rock, and Beyond

England’s Dreaming is the ultimate book on punk, its progenitors, the Sex Pistols, and the moment they defined for music fans in England and the United States Savage brings to life the sensational story of the meteoric rise and rapid implosion of the Pistols through layers of rich detail, exclusive interviews, and rare photographs. This fully revised and updated edition of the book covers the legacy of punk twenty-five years later and provides an account of the Pistols' 1996 reunion as well as a freshly updated discography and a completely new introduction.

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About the Author:

Jon Savage began writing about music in 1976 and has covered the music scene for U.S. and international publications ever since. His books include The Kinks: The Official Biography and Time Travel, a collection of articles. He lives in West London.

From Kirkus Reviews:

In an account packed with incisive social analysis, a London- based writer who contributes regularly to US music magazines (Spin, Rolling Stone, etc.) chronicles the lurid yet surprisingly complex rise and fall of Britain's quintessential punk band, the Sex Pistols. Taking his title from the lyrics of the band's ``God Save the Queen'' (``There is no future, in England's dreaming. No future for you, no future for me''), Savage begins with a long description of the nihilistic, in-your-face fashion world in which Malcolm McLaren, the group's manager, got his start. These first pages are decidedly slow, but they are the only slow ones in a long book that--among countless other things--describes McLaren's apparently seething, opportunistic ambition, and the ``miasma'' of violence that followed the Sex Pistols from an early, foulmouthed TV interview to a gruesome tour across America's South (recounted by Noel E. Monk and Jimmy Guterman in 12 Days on the Road, 1990) and the drug-induced death of bass player Sid Vicious. Throughout, Savage provides much intriguing background information, especially about the suffocating nature of recession-hit 1970's England, along with illuminating quotes from dozens of sources. His narrative is filled with pithy insights that keep their appropriate punch even when wallowing in verbosity (``The very English phlegm which had served as a powerful psychological metaphor for denial...was now, literally, expelled in torrents as...Punk audiences covered their object of desire with sheets of saliva''). Though at times overly detailed and wordy, still a compelling and intelligent narrative that's as much about the nature of anarchy as about the Sex Pistols and punk rock. (Sixteen-page color insert.) -- Copyright 1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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