Category Archives: Public Image Limited

Don’t Ask Me

Public Image Limited
“Don’t Ask Me”
1990 Virgin Records Ltd (UK)
VSCDT 1231

01 Don’t Ask Me | 03:42
02 Rules And Regulations | 04:34
03 Warrior (Extended Remix) | 07:08

“Don’t Ask Me” was issued as a single in advance of Public Image Limited’s 1990 career retrospective, “The Greatest Hits, So Far.” Released at the height of PiL’s commercial phase, the song is viewed by some fans (particularly the “Metal Box” contingent) as the band’s nadir. It may sound a bit naff; however, “Don’t Ask Me” merits listening for its laudable (and occasionally laughable) lyrics.

Most of the tune’s credit is due to bassist Allan Dias, even if the end result isn’t quite how he imagined it. While the song’s social, environmental, and political messages were probably considered trivial in 1990, “Don’t Ask Me” has proven to be remarkably prophetic.

Whatcha gonna do when the river runs dry?
Put your drills in the mud, death up in the sky
Should have saved those bottles, should have saved those cans
Shouldn’t oughta listen to that plastic man

No more toilet paper, it’s gone just like the trees
Do you like the taste of honey? Isn’t it best without the bees?
Be careful what you’re doing, you’re messing up my life
And if all this world’s a cake, then you took too big a slice

What’s it all about, they scream and then they shout
Don’t ask me ’cause I don’t know
What’s it all about, they scream and then they shout
Don’t blame me, I told you so

Read it in the papers, you hear it in the news
Very few listen, you spew without a view
And is it really worth it, your choking on remote
I see the red tide coming, but we don’t even vote

Infection in the greenhouse, dizzy in the clouds
Oily as an ocean, Heaven disemboweled
Planning on a future? Well lucky for some
Develop your body, but your mind is still a slum

The product in this packaging of multi-layered glam
150 layers of a material to cover up this sham
Protecting my planet, you wrap it in plastic
This package is product, perfected eternal, a crap in a cling wrap
I never met a prime minister or president who told the truth yet

Swimming in this slurry, burning in the heat
Wind blown is this weather, I eat what you secrete
I climb this highest derrick, this circus has no prayer
No U.F.O.s to save us, and do we really care?

What’s it all about, they scream and then they shout
Don’t ask me ’cause I don’t know
What’s it all about, they scream and then they shout
Don’t blame me, I told you so

Kiss goodbye to the Earth, the sun, the moon

It’s easy to deceive a child


We can’t solve the world’s problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.
Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

The Public Image Is Rotten

A detailed documentary chronicling the 40-year history of John Lydon’s band, Public Image Limited, makes its debut in North American theaters this evening (although there was an advance screening last night, with Lydon in attendance).

And next month, PiL will hit the road in North America—full tour dates are available on the official website.

Public Image Limited

The Public Image Is Rotten

This Is Not A Love Song

CDT14

Public Image Limited
“This Is Not A Love Song”
1983/1988 Virgin Records Ltd (UK)
CDT 14

01 This Is Not A Love Song (12″ Version) | 04:31
02 Blue Water | 03:50
03 This Is Not A Love Song (Remixed Version) | 4:30
04 Public Image | 03:00
05 This Is Not A Love Song (7″ Version)* | 3:33
06 This Is Not A Love Song (12″ Remix)* | 04:10
07 This Is Not A Love Song (Album Version)* | 04:13

*Bonus tracks not on original CD release

The ‘Remixed Version’ appears as “Love Song” on the unofficial album “Commercial Zone”, released by former PiL guitarist Keith Levene. The ‘12″ Remix’ was previously exclusive to the Japanese issue of “Bad Life”, until its inclusion on the “Plastic Box” compilation in 1999.