THIS was always John Lydon’s serious band and they definitely mean some serious business when they take the stage.

The days of the mid-’90s Bart Simpson-like cartoon character Johnny Rotten are clearly in the past and we are treated to nearly two hours of bass heavy dub music, punctuated by Lydon’s tortured wailings.

He warns us that the evening wasn’t going to be easy and he definitely doesn’t mean for him either.

Most of the potentially crowd friendly hits are bypassed on the set list in favour of some of the more obscure early work as he leans heavily on the first two PiL albums.

Tunes drift into one another as we are treated to forgotten classics like the 10-minute Albatross, Death Disco and Memories, which sit effortlessly alongside the brand new material, Deeper Water and single One Drop.

Any audience inter-action is non-existent and the band executes their performance as true professionals.

It has been argued in the past that Public Image Limited has just been a vehicle for Lydon’s ego with the line up changing more frequently than his loud suits and exotic hair-styles.

However, on this performance they really fit as a proper band with the new line up being firmly in place since 2009.

The set is closed with a 10-minute dub re-working of the Lydon and Leftfield surprise dance hit Open Up.

Nick Marrow