PiL* ‎– Metal Box

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Originally released as "Metal Box" in 1979 by Virgin Records (containing three 12" 45rpm records), it was deleted from the catalogue on 23 November 1979 after an initial release of 60,000 units, then re-issued on 22 February 1980 as "Second Edition", a double LP packaged in a more conventional gatefold.

Tracklist

Albatross 10:32
Memories 5:05
Swan Lake 4:19
Poptones 7:45
Careering 4:32
No Birds 4:43
Graveyard 3:07
The Suit 3:29
Bad Baby 4:30
Socialist/Chant/Radio 4 12:31

Versions (46)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
METAL 1 PiL* Metal Box(3x12", Album, Ltd + Box) Virgin METAL 1 UK 1979 Sell This Version
MBCAS 1 P.I.L.* Metal Box(Cass, Album) Virgin MBCAS 1 UK 1979 Sell This Version
300 884 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album) Virgin 300 884 Benelux 1979 Sell This Version
VD2512 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album) Virgin VD2512 UK 1979 Sell This Version
300 863-420, 300 861, 300 862 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album) Virgin, Virgin, Virgin 300 863-420, 300 861, 300 862 Germany 1979 Sell This Version
2WX 3288 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Island Records 2WX 3288 Canada 1979 Sell This Version
300863 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Virgin 300863 France 1979 Sell This Version
VD 2512, VDC 2512 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Virgin, Virgin VD 2512, VDC 2512 Australia 1979 Sell This Version
AVIL 212512 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Virgin AVIL 212512 Italy 1979 Sell This Version
VD 2512 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Virgin VD 2512 New Zealand 1979 Sell This Version
VD 2512 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Virgin VD 2512 New Zealand 1979 Sell This Version
2WX 3288 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Island Records 2WX 3288 US 1979 Sell This Version
WB 2W5 3288 PiL* Second Edition(Cass, Album) Warner Bros. Records WB 2W5 3288 US 1979 Sell This Version
2W5 3288 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(Cass, Album) Warner Bros. Records 2W5 3288 US 1979 Sell This Version
2676 720 Public Image Limited Second Edition(2xLP, Album) Polydor 2676 720 France 1980 Sell This Version
YB-7006~7-AX Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Columbia YB-7006~7-AX Japan 1980 Sell This Version
LSVIRG 75095/6, VD2512 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album) Jugoton, Virgin LSVIRG 75095/6, VD2512 Yugoslavia 1981 Sell This Version
062-VG-50057/58, 062-VG 50057/58 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album) Virgin, Virgin 062-VG-50057/58, 062-VG 50057/58 Greece 1984 Sell This Version
60013 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, RE) Virgin 60013 France 1984 Sell This Version
33C38-7947 Public Image Limited Metal Box(CD, Album) Columbia 33C38-7947 Japan 1986 Sell This Version
CDVD 2512 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(CD, Album) Virgin CDVD 2512 UK 1986 Sell This Version
CDVD 2512 Public Image* Second Edition(CD, Album) Virgin CDVD 2512 UK 1986 Sell This Version
VGD 3513 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, RE) Virgin VGD 3513 1987 Sell This Version
VGD 3513 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, RE, Gat) Virgin VGD 3513 UK 1987 Sell This Version
CY-3113 Public Image Limited Metal Box(CD, Album) Columbia CY-3113 Japan 1989 Sell This Version
MTLCD 1 P.I.L.* Metal Box(CD, Album, Ltd, Tin) Virgin MTLCD 1 UK 1990 Sell This Version
3288-2 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(CD, Album, Club, RE) Warner Bros. Records 3288-2 US 1990 Sell This Version
3288-2 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(CD, Album, RE) Warner Bros. Records 3288-2 US 1990 Sell This Version
MTLCD 1, MTLCD1, 0777 7 87473 2 1, 07777 8747321 PiL* Metal Box(CD, Album) Virgin, Virgin, Virgin, Virgin MTLCD 1, MTLCD1, 0777 7 87473 2 1, 07777 8747321 UK 1996 Sell This Version
MTLCD 1, 0777 7 87473 2 1, MTLCD1, 07777 8747321, Public Image Ltd* Metal Box(CD, Album, RE) Virgin, Virgin, Virgin, Virgin, Virgin MTLCD 1, 0777 7 87473 2 1, MTLCD1, 07777 8747321, Europe 1996 Sell This Version
AN-2039 PiL* Metal Box(CD, Unofficial) ArsNova AN-2039 Russia 1999 Sell This Version
4M 500 Public Image Limited Metal Box(3xLP, RE) 4 Men With Beards 4M 500 US 2006 Sell This Version
MTLCD 3, 50999 6 07017 2 5 Public Image Limited Metal Box(3xCD, Album, RM) Virgin, Virgin MTLCD 3, 50999 6 07017 2 5 Europe 2009 Sell This Version
4M517 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, RE, Gat) 4 Men With Beards 4M517 US 2009 Sell This Version
TOCP-95081~83 Public Image Limited Metal Box(3xCD, Album, RM, Ltd) PIL TOCP-95081~83 Japan 2011 Sell This Version
TOCP-95071 PiL* Second Edition(CD, Album, Ltd, RM, SHM) PIL TOCP-95071 Japan 2011 Sell This Version
CDVDR 2512, 50999 0 70015 2 9 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(CD, Album, RE, RM) Virgin, Virgin CDVDR 2512, 50999 0 70015 2 9 Europe 2011 Sell This Version
CDVDR 2512 / 50999 0 70015 2 9 Public Image Limited Second Edition(CD, Album, RE, RM) Virgin CDVDR 2512 / 50999 0 70015 2 9 UK & Europe 2011 Sell This Version
TOCP-54558 Public Image Limited Second Edition(CD, Album, RE, RM) PIL TOCP-54558 Japan 2011 Sell This Version
CDVDR 2512, 50999 0 70015 2 9 Public Image Limited Second Edition(CD, RE, RM) Virgin, Virgin CDVDR 2512, 50999 0 70015 2 9 Europe 2012 Sell This Version
UICY-77451 PiL* Metal Box(3xCD, Album, Ltd, RE, SHM + Box) PIL UICY-77451 Japan 2015 Sell This Version
4M517 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, RE, Cle) 4 Men With Beards 4M517 US 2016 Sell This Version
MTLCD 1, 07777 8747321, 07777 87473 21 Public Image Ltd* Metal Box(CD, Album, RE) Virgin, Virgin, Virgin MTLCD 1, 07777 8747321, 07777 87473 21 UK & Europe Unknown Sell This Version
2WX 3288 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(2xLP, Album, Gat) Warner Bros. Records 2WX 3288 US Unknown Sell This Version
3288-2 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(CD, Album, RE, RP) Warner Bros. Records 3288-2 US Unknown Sell This Version
141 Public Image Ltd.* Second Edition(Cass, Album, Unofficial) Digi Music 141 Poland Unknown Sell This Version

Recommendations

Reviews Show All 14 Reviews

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sul42

sul42

July 20, 2016
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1
I was approaching reaching the milestone of 1000 LPs after 25 years of collecting, and obviously was trying to decide on getting something classic, iconic and just excellent to fill that spot that I didn't already have.

I filled that slot today with this album after seeing both Jah Wobble and John Lydon live for the first time in May this year.

So glad I chose this!
warsperfume

warsperfume

July 10, 2016
referencing Second Edition, 2xLP, Album, RE, Gat, 4M517
How's the quality of this pressing? I've received some cruddy pressings from 4 Men With Beards in the past...
phaks

phaks

March 26, 2016
referencing Second Edition, 2xLP, Album, 300 863-420, 300 861, 300 862
Classsicc!! White Dub. White Punk. Mr Levene at his best, maybe also because on some tracks he plays other instruments instead of his guitar. The bass & drums cool and dubby. Mr Lydon like a preacher. An extraordinary 2xLP set.
genx4u

genx4u

March 24, 2016
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1
Help? anyone else have this with Disc 3 is correctly labeled in the run off as Metal-1-E2 and Metal 1-F1
BUT...disk has the same paper label on both sides of 3 (Metal-1-E) ???
HyeDude

HyeDude

July 6, 2015
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1
The matrix numbers on my copy are different from what's listed above. Mine are: A-2, B-2, C-1, D-1, E-1, F-1. I got it in California in 1980, so maybe these are what was in the exported copies.
brenoe

brenoe

August 30, 2014
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1
Did they really print 50.000 copies of this?
mrt1969able

mrt1969able

January 8, 2014
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1
As soon as you put this on the turntable your head and mind are in for a massive head fuck!!!
Killer bass! Killer drums!! Aaaaaarrrrggghhhh
Only the lonely ....
steady-j

steady-j

October 14, 2013
edited about 1 year ago
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1

Colour me musically naive, at the age of 45, but after reading about this album in Simon Reynolds' great post-punk history "Rip It Up and Start Again", I felt I had to get to hear it some time. One day I was in my local record emporium and realised I must be listening to PiL - the familiar whining drawl of John Lydon but combined with a raw dubby bass and drum beat. I asked the shop assistant and yes, a copy of "Second edition" was in the CD player. Knowing my predilection for vinyl, he said "we've got a Metal Box in the second-hand section", and since then I had my eye on it. An impromptu half-price sale day gave me the chance to pick up a bargain - less than 20 notes!. OK the tin is black, the vinyl's not mint and the insert is missing, but the raw energy of the music is not.

I don't think I could have liked this record in 1979. I was just 11, and although I was into pop by then, pop was the extent of it. Fortunately the charts were chock full with interesting stuff from the Police to M to Gary Numan, but I was pretty oblivious to anything not in the top 40, and punk had "happened" before my musical ears had opened, thus the avant-garde sound emanating from the likes of PiL would have been beyond me.
As Simon observes in his book, music moves so fast in ones youth, that one rarely pauses to turn back and revisit or review for anything missed. Thus it was for me and my tastes grew through electronic pop taking in soul, funk hip hop, electro and finally house and techno as the late 80s rave wave took over.

But now I'm old and have time to reflect - and it is amazing to listen back to the material coming out in the post-punk era - new wave and experimental music that was trying in ways far more radical than punk, just less noisily and in-your-face, to completely change the structure and nature of music. These same things were later achieved in different ways by Acid House and Techno, but to hear a band, playing instruments and singing, with fairly minimal post-produciton, and yet come up with a sound that is comparable on many levels to the weirdness of Acid House, or the space of techno is a real ear-opener to me. Hats off!
CARLJA1960

CARLJA1960

June 10, 2011
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1

I did have two copies of this but my idiot brother decided to give one away to one of hid friends when I was abroad in the Army.
consort

consort

March 13, 2010
edited over 6 years ago
referencing Metal Box, 3x12", Album, Ltd + Box, METAL 1
I've been listening to this album for over 20 years and have only just had the opportunity to listen to the 45-RPM cuts. I was overcome, goosebumps shimmering over my entire skin, tears filling my eyes, and was filled with yearning to melt into each track. The difference in definition (in comparison to the 2xLP reissue) is not subtle.