Picks and Pans Review: This Is What You Want...this Is What You Get

updated 09/10/1984 at 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/10/1984 01:00AM

Public Image Ltd.

John Lydon, formerly Johnny Rotten, gained fame (some would say infamy) in 1975 as a founding member of the Sex Pistols, who rudely banged the starting gong for the punk movement. Public Image Ltd. is the group Lydon formed in 1978 when the Sex Pistols ran out of poison bullets. Other than Lydon and drummer Martin Atkins, the lineup in PIL has changed from the last album. This Is What You Want... suggests that Johnny, 28, a Londoner of Irish Catholic background, is still an angry young man, spewing indignation and resentment. With its minimalist melodies, repetitive lyrics and Lydon's Alvin and the Chipmunks vocals, this is the type of music that Robert De Niro's whacked-out character Travis Bickle might have had running through his head in the movie Taxi Driver. You have your zombie cuts, Bad Life and Tie Me to the Length of That, and your just disturbing cuts, The Pardon and Where Are You. Lydon characterizes the album as "white dance music." Indeed, if you happen to be white and dancing alone in a dark boiler room, this might be just the kind of thing you want. (Elektra)

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