Aural Sculptors - The Stranglers Live 1976 to the Present

Welcome to Aural Sculptors, a blog aimed at bringing the music of The Stranglers to as wide an audience as possible. Whilst all of the various members of the band that have passed through the ranks since 1974 are accomplished studio musicians, it is on stage where the band have for me had their biggest impact.

As a collector of their live recordings for many years I want to share some of the better quality material with other fans. By selecting the higher quality recordings I hope to present The Stranglers in the best possible light for the benefit of those less familiar with their material than the hardcore fan.

Needless to say, this site will steer well clear of any officially released material. As well as live gigs, I will post demos, radio interviews and anything else that I feel may be of interest.

In addition, occasionally I will post material by other bands, related or otherwise, that mean a lot to me.

Your comments and/or contributions are most welcome. Please email me at

Friday 30 June 2023

Generation Sex Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts Worthy Farm Pilton 24th June 2023


I did not watch much of the Glastonbury Festival at all. It just doesn't appeal when there are smaller, more intimate festivals on my doorstep (Sign Of The Times and Stone Valley South for example). Not only do these festivals cater much more to my hoary old taste in music, but they are affordable and on a scale whereby to get to the stage is not a half day hike... listen to me. what an old codger! But seriously, whilst not a seasoned festival goer I went to Reading in '87 and '89 when that festival (one of the biggest in the UK at the time) was still transitioning from a metal festival to an indie festival. As such I was far more comfortable with the image of the festival goer as someone in a leather jacket with four cans suspended from a bullet belt. On the first morning at Reading in 1987 I threw up... to deal with this I went down to the river's edge and ate a tin of cold baked beans washed down with a couple of cans of Webster's Best Bitter (there was nothing best about it!). Now, no doctor was ever going to commend me on my festival diet, but rather that than a jog around a festival site perimeter before a granola breakfast!

So you get it, Glastonbury is not for me and whilst I must admire Elton's talent and longevity, I didn't watch him either. But I did see this... Generation Sex... perhaps what the Sham Pistols could have been! And now I am gonna moan again, As much as I like the Pistols and The Professionals, I have never got on with Generation X, bar a couple of singles I have nothing by them and yet they were the real deal, Class of '77 and there are not many bands of that ilk that I don't like (Boomtown Rats). What it is about them that always put me off I don't know... they looked sharp, they had mod sensibilities in image and music (and I love the Small Faces), so on paper they would be a good fit. It's probably sneering Bill that has put me off... and before you ask it has nothing to do with JJ's antipathy towards him. Tony James went to Brunel, as did I, not that that fact would sway me one way or the other... but I didn't like SSS or late Sisters of Mercy and I never really got to hear his short lived collaboration with Mick Jones, 'Carbon-Silicon'.

But let's be objective for a minute about Generation Sex. Cook and Jones sound fabulous, those songs still pack one hell of a punch even on a balmy Somerset afternoon and James nails the bass. As for Billy I can't fault him on the Gen X material, it's his after all how could anyone do a better job. As far as the Pistols' renditions go, he does a good job I think. It's not Lydon, but then we must make do as the prospects of seeing Cooky and Jones treading the same boards as Johnny are pretty slim in the wake of 'Pistol'.

See what you think.

I hope that the DVD works OK, it's the first DVD edit that I have done for several years and I had to teach myself all over again. Fingers crossed.

Incidentally, whilst this DVD is the full BBC broadcast, the band's set also included Stepping Stone, Kiss Me Deadly, Dancing With Myself and Silly Thing.... I would have preferred to see Silly Thing over Black Leather!

DVD Iso Image:


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