Saturday, 9 April 2016

Public Image Limited Plastic Box

Public Image Limited Plastic Box CD1/CD2/CD3/CD4

Get It At Discogs
Most who own Plastic Box probably use the second half as coasters. Those who don't probably get headaches when listening to the first two, and a select few find much to love about the whole thing. As if conceding to the consensus that PiL's early years were their best, the first half is devoted to the band's first three studio LPs cut over four years, while the second half covers the remainder. Listeners get the entirety of Public Image/First Edition sans "Fodderstompf." The majority of Metal Box (issued as Second Edition in the U.S.) is included, with three of the original versions sacrificed for Peel Session counterparts that really take the cake. "Careering" is especially wonderful and harrowing, arguably the collective's finest recorded moment. Keith Levene goes bonkers with the keyboards, perhaps fostering the increased intensity amongst the remaining members. The 12" mix of "Swan Lake" ("Death Disco") gets the box set upgrade too, as well as a couple other worthwhile Metal Box outtakes. Closing out the second disc is the entirety of The Flowers of Romance, sequentially shuffled with an additional non-album track. The second half of Plastic Box hits upon each of the remaining studio LPs, with the odd rarity, single mix and Peel Session thrown in for completist bait. For those who want improved sound over their early CD issues, the money spent is a smart investment. A quick comparison of the first 20 seconds of "Annalisa" to the version found on an old copy of Public Image should be evidence enough; the bassline of "Chant" makes the gut feel as if it's being endlessly pummelled by a bouncing battering ram. Though vast and relatively pricey, Plastic Box is an excellent introduction, if only for the adventurous

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