HATE RATES.... ***** BIBLE **** TABLOID *** COMIC ** CHIP PAPER * PULP
Sex and Seditionaires
By Simon Easton (aka Punk Pistol)
Late last year I bought a numbered, autographed with a free CD ROM coffee table punk
book (surely a contradiction) which cost £100. Which was a significant chunk of change for
the average punk punter on a budget like myself.
It was a very glamorous book celebrating old school very sought after specific objects of
retro memorabilia, which probably had one eye on the Japanese collectors market when
first published in 2007 and partially explains its original very high retail price.
But this was no ordinary punk book it was the very limited edition 'Sex and Seditionaires' by
Punk Pistol which according to a promo email I had received from a friend just a year or so
earlier was retailing at a staggering £250 PLUS P+P which put it way out of my league.
At the time Christmas 08 was coming up in a few months so I attempted to persuade my wife
and son to try and buy a new copy for me I'd found on the net that was being sold at a very
reduced price as my present, which they thankfully did.
Since the book was first published there has been a very bitter and very public falling out
between the author and Malcolm McLaren.
Talcy Malcy who wrote the introduction and originally gave the book his blessing took the
books author Punk Pistol to task over the alleged authenticity of some of the items of
clothing featured. And a sale of some dodgy garments to the multi millionaire artist Damien
Hirst, in which he was implicated. Hirst with his massive wealth was buying himself an instant
original punk era collection and had apparently got stung with a few plastic bags stuffed full
of repro's for what seems a relatively paltry sum in his world. In relation to his multi-million
pound personal fortune it was reported the alleged fraud was thought to be in the region of
between £40.000 and £80.000.
"Ever get the feeling you've been
The dispute/investigation seems to
be still ongoing but in the few emails
I had with him last year concerning
my minor purchase. I found Punk
Pistol to be a very reasonable and
friendly guy, I had no problems with
him whatsoever. So I don't know if its
just another manufactured publicity
seeking hype from the self
proclaimed rock'n'roll swindler? Or if
there is real genuine substance to
the fascinating globe spanning fakes
conspiracy story. Whatever, it's a
hell of a tale.
No doubt we'll find out the truth one
way or another through time.
Sorry about the diversion, back to
the review. It's not often you buy a
book that is the same size and
weight as a small child. But 'Sex
And Seditionaires' is a book so
lavish in it's presentation that it's
hard to argue with its high sale
price. It must have cost an absolute fortune to produce,
there's a lot of attention to detail. No expense has been
spared in it's design from the very high quality glossy
paper of every page, the binding, the hard cardboard
box protective cover and repro sex brown paper bag
complete with logos. Along side the artificial cosmetic
folds and deliberate rips and tears.
It's a beautiful thing to look at, you've probably never
seen the 'Let It Rock/Sex/Seditionaries' clothes look so
good unless you saw them pristine and new hanging on
a rail in the shop itself. Though in saying that, with the
quality of the photos being so good some of the very
early items look a bit ropey and really badly made.
Although that could be intentional or could just be down
to the age and wear and tear on the garments
I know for sure I wouldn't have bought them looking like
that but that's just personal taste (but then again that
wasn't really the point was it!?). Not that I could have
afforded to buy them on a school boys pocket Money,
not until Feb. '78 anyway.
All those shocking classic designs you may/may not
remember are here in all
their many graphic
Some of which I know I
hadn't seen seen before.
There are also a number
of written essays
featured from "Ted
Severin, John Savage,
Jonhn Ingham, Glen
Matlock". As well as
photographed items from
the collections of Johnny
Thunders, Helen Of Troy,
Jordan, Marco Pirroni,
Kirk Brandon, Topper
Headon, Gene October,
Kenny Morris, Toyah, all
the Sex Pistols and
With only 1000 holy
grail 1st edition
copies printed and
probably all long gone.
Sourcing a very good
condition copy with all
the extras included at
a reasonable price like I
gratefully did is going to
be like finding hens
teeth as the on going legal dispute may have put an end to a proposed republished mass market second edition.
Best of luck with your search punk!
JOE DONNELLY (BELFAST) 7/5/09.
I have read a number of online features for and against each party involved in the fakes controversy since writing the above review. And it would
indeed make an intriguing book in itself.
Do a bit of internet detective work and check out the accusations flying back and forward for yourself.
I'll stick to buying what I know are genuine fakes!
JOE DONNELLY (BELFAST) 13/5/09.