Sunday, July 24, 2011


About a year ago I stumbled upon pilhead's Sex Pistols/PiL Live blog, a virtual gold mine of bootleg recordings from the two bands and several others. Recordings were organized in chronological order, many being high quality lossless flac files, with people working with him to provide artwork and find and share new bootleg recordings to emerge on the scene. pilhead was posting 4 or 5 new recordings each month, being my primary source of rare and high quality recordings.

But alas, all good things must come to an end. Last week I got an email from pilhead saying the following:

Iam sending you this email to inform you that the blog has ceased to exist. I am sending this to all my 'friends' and supporters, who helped make Sex Pistols/ PIL Live Blogspot worthwhile.

I have recently been contacted & THREATENED WITH LEGAL ACTION! I was given 48 hours to remove the blog & its posts to avoid this action. This action came from ConcertLive who have advised me that they own the copyright for recording & distributing ALL live PIL Recordings- I was advised that the distribution and recording of any live PIL performance without their consent was a breach of the copyright they hold.

I'm was only in it for the fun of sharing the recordings with other fans but I am not willing to be prosecuted for doing this. It was fun while it lasted & I will continue to trade in good old fashion ways. You may occasionally receive an email from myself in the future with something you may like.

I thank all of you for joining in, sharing & generally being nice

I'm truly gutted at ending this journey


In tribute to all the work he put into the site and for having shared his collection with very little expected in return, I devoted this evenings vitural concert experience to the music of the Sex Pistols and Public Imiage Limited.

Sid Vicious(born John Simon Ritchie) was asked to join the group after Glen Matlock's departure in February 1977 due to his being present at every gig. Manager Malcolm McLaren once claimed "if Johnny Rotten is the voice of punk, then Vicious is the attitude."

The Pistols broke up in San Francisco after their concert at the Winterland Ballroom on 14 January 1978. With his girlfriend Nancy Spungen acting as his "manager", Vicious embarked on a solo career during which he performed with musicians including Mick Jones of The Clash, original Sex Pistols bassist Glen Matlock, Rat Scabies of The Damned and the New York Dolls' Arthur Kane, Jerry Nolan, and Johnny Thunders.

I'm not entirely sure who he was playing with this evening in London, but the band sounded really good, as did Sid himself. He put on a really good show in this excellent sounding recording.

Download it here:

Next up was the Sex Pistols performing on December 6, 1976 at the Leeds Polytechnic, Leeds, UK, one of the few venues not to ban their stage show during the “Anarchy in the UK” tour. The audience were apathetic and hung back unsure what to do, failing to be drawn by Rottens taunting.

This show took place only a few days after the infamous Bill Grundy television interview that was broadcast live in the UK, their first serious TV they had. The Sex Pistols unleash their fateful four-letter words, provoked by an inebriated Bill Grundy. John Lydon said "We were supposed to go on and be nice boys. Grundy must have had a drinking problem. Steve was goaded into swearing after something I mumbled..." They thought it was hilarious, the more outrageous it got, the more they thought it would sell loads of records. It caused a major backlash in the UK, succeeding in getting the Sex Pistols banned from many concert halls, and inviting protest wherever they played. But it did succeed in making them a household word.

Someone’s recollection of the Leeds concert:

"I remember the noise, every band counted each song in and out. This was my first taste of punk. I, like most other people there, just stood and gazed in total confusion, at what was happening on the stage."

"I saw a guy with green hair, a loud-mouthed Londoner who, was there as much to be seen as to see. I also remember Johnny Rotten, in an oversized red waistcoat and oversized, baggy black trousers, aiming negative remarks towards some local Leeds MP who had tried to ban the show."

"Johnny Thunders of the Heartbreakers (ex-New York Dolls) stood next to me and my two mates, glaring at us while the Pistols were playing. As soon as the two of us bumped eyes he looked away. Aggressively, I asked him 'Who are you f****** looking at?' I was young and full of false bravado."

"When Thunders was interviewed in Sounds magazine a while later, he described the fans in Leeds as 'they look as though if you bump eyes with them, as though they wouldn't hesitate to put a knife in you'. To this day, I hope he didn't mean me!"

"I remember Captain Sensible of the Damned signing an autograph for a girl, when he had done it and left, I asked the girl if I could see it, she obliged. It read, 'I'm not signing my f******* name on this'. The show did one thing for me, introduced me to The Clash, a love affair that has lasted to this very day."

Read it all here:

Download it here:

Or here:

Finally, I close the evening with Public Image Limited’s most recent release, a limited edition CD of their June 11, 2011 performance at the Isle of Wight Festival. Sound problems caused John Lydon to complain for much of the opening number “I can’t hear a fucking thing….this has to be fixed.” Naturally a great recording that you can still purchase here:

“Public Image Limited fared far better, displaying John Lydon’s true artistry with their genre splicing post-punk attack that still sounds revolutionary some thirty years on. Despite battling sound issues and having to go off stage, they put on a master class in proto-noise rock, layering sawing guitars, German synths, irresistible bass grooves and dance rhythms into a glorious and at times frightening whole. Metal Box standouts “Swanlake” and “Albatross” were the obvious highlights but Lydon’s intoxicating punk preacher rant “Religion II” proved a demonic show stealer.”

Read it all here:


Anonymous said...

Hello mate
thanks for the compliment
Going to be getting the new blog together for about October, it will be invite only for everyone that used to email me on the old one. You will be able to recommend a friend if you want them to have access, just email once the new one has taken off. Got plenty more to share.... PIL/Pistols/Professionals?Nuerotics & others. But it will also have gigs from other punk bands that I'm into.

Gonna enjoy the English Summer (if you can call it that, LOL)
By the ways, Sid's band for the Electric Ballroom show was made up of Steve New (guitar), Glen Matlock (bass) & Rat Scabies (drums)

Have a good Summer mate
All the best

Pil Head

Anonymous said...

Ah, so that's what happened. Thanks for the news, was a recent follower of PiLhead and glad to know he's coming back soon.

Not sure what concert live are playing at. Are they going to legally threaten all the people that have put youtube clips of PiL up too? fair enough if it was their recordings, but it wasn't.

Would love to know how to get an invite to the new blog.

Lee D.

Anonymous said...

I hope What A Temper doesnt mind me using his comments section for this message

Lee D. email me


Anonymous said...

I miss you Pil Head! =( Thank god I'm recovering your boots, Pil Head!

volcano man said...

We all miss him! I was able to download a number of his postings that I will eventually repost here on this site as I listen to them. MY liver's going to hate it. Can't wait for October and his return!

biopunk said...

Thanks for the info, volcano man!

Was worried when the blog was just gone.

And cheers to Pil Head for all the time and effort and tunes that he gave the rest of us. I appreciated it!

Pistol Pete said...

IMHO he is a legend among bootleg fans, he shared everything he had, and he had a lot, some of which i never knew existed until I found his blog. He always namechecked people that helped him which I thought was a nice touch - he worked with some 'names' that we all know- what a great circle of friends. All genuine music fans.I used to email him & he seemed very down to earth. I also know he is gutted about the concert live shit that happened- he never intended to infringe anyones rights.
It seems a lot of people thought a lot of good things about what he did, I hope we all made an effort to thank him (I did)
I also look forward to his next blog- a genuine fan

Anonymous said...

Il Head - so sorry to hear about what happened...

you were the coolest, man, you shared generously, you shared many shows that had previously been kept in the inner circles of the elite collectors or only available on torrents.

Thank you, I will be eternally grateful. I wish you all the best for now and the future, and for your family and loved ones... you rock, mate :)