Sex Pistols Plan Reissue Bonanza

As first tipped here in March, the Sex Pistols' 1977 punk anthem "God Save the Queen" will be reissued as a U.K. single with new remixes by Virgin, 25 years to the day since its first appearance. It w

As first tipped here in March, the Sex Pistols' 1977 punk anthem "God Save the Queen" will be reissued as a U.K. single with new remixes by Virgin, 25 years to the day since its first appearance. It will be followed by a single CD Pistols compilation and a three-disc box set.

The track, first issued on May 27, 1977, will be back in stores on that date a quarter-century later, adding two remixes (in dance and extended versions) from the original masters, completed by Neil Barnes of Leftfield. The eight-minute dance mix includes radio clips from the time of the first release, as Greg Edwards, then a presenter on London's Capital Radio, explains that the song is likely to offend listeners and will not be featured in the station's regular programming.

When first released, the single was the subject of considerable speculation that it had been improperly held off the No. 1 position in Jubilee week in June 1977. It peaked at No. 2 behind Rod Stewart's "I Don't Want To Talk About It"/"The First Cut Is the Deepest."

On June 3, the new Sex Pistols retrospective "Jubilee" arrives along with "Sex Pistols - The Box Set." "Jubilee" will include a live version of "Pretty Vacant" from the band's 1996 Filthy Lucre reunion tour, plus CD-ROM videos of "God Save the Queen," "Pretty Vacant," and "Anarchy in the U.K." The 61-track box set contains not only the group's best-known releases but previously unheard demos and live material, with much of the third disc comprising a 1976 gig at London's Screen on the Green.

The single reissue follows the recent news that Billy Bragg plans a May 20 U.K. release for his own anti-monarchist single, "Tear Down the Union Jack" on Cooking Vinyl, as the nation gears up for the Queen's Golden Jubilee celebrations. Classical and pop concerts will be held in the gardens of Buckingham Palace on June 1 and 3, respectively. Patriotic feelings will also be running high thanks to England's opening match in soccer's World Cup in Japan and South Korea, which takes place June 2.