By Jacob Katel
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By Pablo Chacon Alvarez
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By Laurie Charles
Most music fans think they know the story of the Sex Pistols fairly well, but when you mention Glen Matlock to them, the name often draws blank stares. They might remember he was their original bass player and left just before the media circus took over, but few realize he also wrote most of the music.
Depending on what tale you like to believe, Matlock either walked off or was sacked supposedly for liking the Beatles to make way for a spectacle named Sid Vicious. The fact that the Pistols recorded only one studio album before imploding points to how essential Matlock was to their oeuvre. He wrote ten of their songs and all of their hits. Despite rumors to the contrary, even punk rock needs talented songwriting. Vicious might have been key to making the Sex Pistols famous, but he definitely killed the music (as well as himself ... and maybe Nancy).
Matlock immediately formed the critically acclaimed Rich Kids and did plenty of session work with the likes of Iggy Pop, Johnny Thunders, and others. He even rejoined the Sex Pistols in 1996 when they finally got around to doing a proper American tour. Maybe not so strangely, Matlock also is the only ex-Pistol still making significant contributions to music.
Now fronting the Philistines, Matlock has returned to the type of music he likely would have been recording if he hadn't stumbled across Malcolm McLaren's fetish shop all those years ago. Their latest album, On Something, is a solid collection of melodic bar-band rock that's dosed on Mott the Hoople and Small Faces. Although the songs might not be as earth-shattering as those on Never Mind the Bollocks, they still make for a rollicking night out at the pub. Margaret Griffis