The British rock band Public Image Ltd, fronted by John Lydon, known as the singer of the punk Sex Pistols, will return to the Czech Republic after five years. As part of the world tour, they will perform on October 16 at Lucerna Music Bar in Prague and the following day at Fléda in Brno. He will present a new studio album called End of World, which the frontman dedicates to his recently deceased wife Nora Forsterová.
The musicians announced the lineup on Tuesday evening. The Prague concert is organized by the D Smack U Promotion agency, tickets will be on sale from Friday morning in the GoOut network.
End of World will be the eleventh studio recording of the lineup, which debuted in 1978 with the album Public Image: First Issue and helped establish the genre called postpunk. In their music, island rock gradually mixed with the influences of dub or krautrock, avant-garde practices, alternative rock, dance pop or eastern influences. Compared to the Sex Pistols, they were more experimental, working with slower, darker bass rhythms. According to Lydon, only Public Image Ltd became his “first love” with whom he felt he could express emotions.
The hot-tempered singer John Lydon, aka Johnny Rotten, founded Public Image Ltd after the break-up of the riotous Sex Pistols, who had last toured in January 1978. He tried to gather around him musicians with whom he could express himself without compromise, he said at the time. The formation has changed many times since its founding, including bassist Jah Wobble and the recently deceased guitarist Keith Levene. In 1992, Public Image Ltd ceased operations, but later announced a comeback.
Now singer Lydon has been accompanied for years by drummer Bruce Smith, bassist Scott Firth and multi-instrumentalist Lu Edmonds, who has performed several times in the Czech Republic as a member of the trio Les Triaboliques. In this line-up, Public Image Ltd have already arrived twice, the first time they played at the Colors of Ostrava festival in 2010, the second time in 2018 at Lucerna Music Bar in Prague, where they will return this year.
In addition, in 1996, Lydon performed at the Prague Exhibition Center with the then revived Sex Pistols. “We certainly found a common reason to play. That’s your money,” he said dryly at the time.
Earlier this year, Public Image Ltd drew attention to themselves by announcing that they would like to represent Ireland at the international Eurovision Song Contest. Lydon, who was born in London to Irish parents and has an Irish passport in addition to his American one, submitted a composition called Hawaii. He described it as a love letter to his wife Nora Forster, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease by doctors. They have been theirs since 1979.
“The song is intended for everyone who is going through difficult times along the way of life with the person they care about the most. But there is also hope in it that love will eventually conquer everything,” says the 67-year-old musician today. He failed with the song. His wife died last week. Lydon is dedicating his upcoming album End of World to her, he explained on the band’s website.
New single Penge from Public Image Ltd’s upcoming studio album End of World. | Video: Public Image Ltd
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