My Top 1000 Songs #274: Anarchy In The UK

[I've been writing up my Top 1000 songs on a daily basis--you can see them all in descending order by hitting the All My Favorite Songs tag.]

So, hey, new king across the pond. How 'bout that?

Anyway, as noted previously, it was "Pretty Vacant" that introduced teenage me, somewhat belatedly, to the Sex Pistols. But since I didn't know it was a Pistols song, when I finally got around to buying Never Mind The Bollocks, "Anarchy In The UK" was the song I was most curious about. I'd never heard it (no airplay here in the US, or at least on the Midwestern FM radio stations I listened to), but I'd read a lot about it over the years. So naturally I expected something scary and dangerous. And what I got instead was a killer rock song that just happened to have about a thousand layers of crunchy guitars and Johnny Rotten's bile-filled yet mesmerizing wail. Noisy and brash and angry and fuck all, but also ridiculously catchy and funny and at heart just good old-fashioned rock & roll amped up a bit.

Still, half the song's magic lies in closing your eyes and trying to hear it in context. I just looked up the weekly survey from one of those afore-referenced Chicago stations the week "Anarchy" was released, and here are the Top 5 songs:

  1. Rod Stewart, Tonight's The Night
  2. Captain & Tennille, Muskrat Love
  3. Boston, More Than A Feeling
  4. Rick Dees, Disco Duck
  5. Firefall, You Are The Woman
So, yeah, "Anarchy" still feels pretty damn ballsy, just what rock music needed.
Live in 1976:
Reunion performance: