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You Need to Check Out Stiff Little Fingers’ Inflammable Material – Music Suggestion

Inflammable Material is a Masterpiece by Stiff Little Fingers

Putting the fast in Belfast is Stiff Little Fingers, a punk rock band from Northern Ireland whose debut album Inflammable Material f**king hits. I snagged the opening line of this post from their website after having a good laugh at it. While they might not be great at coming up with catchy slogans, they more than makeup with absolute raw guitar work and lyrics to match.

For a quick taste, check out the lyrics from “Suspect Device,” the first song on Inflammable Material.

Inflammable material, planted in my head
It’s a suspect device that’s left two thousand dead
Their solutions are our problems
They put up the wall
On each side, time and prime us
Make sure we get fuck all
They play their games of power
They cut and mark the pack
They deal us to the bottom
But what do they put back?

Don’t believe them
Don’t believe them
Don’t be bitten twice
You gotta suss, suss, suss, suss, suss, suss
Suss, suspect device

“Suspect Device” by Stiff Little Fingers

To give background to this band who created these incredible lyrics, Stiff Little Fingers was formed in 1977 during the height of The Troubles, a conflict that lasted in Ireland for over three decades. Many of their songs in Inflammable Material are a reference to the violence and mayhem seen with their own eyes while growing up in a war-torn country. With “Suspect Device,” in particular, they are speaking about how both sides use young people as weapons during the war.

Another song, less about The Troubles, and one that speaks to me to this day would be “Breakout.” Let’s give it a read:

Ain’t got no money but I don’t give a damn
‘Cos when I get it spend it fast as I can
Ain’t got no worries at least none I can see
Got to make a fast connection then I’ll be free
I gotta

Break out and leave this life behind
Break out and see what I can find
Might lose I’m going to try my luck
Might win don’t really give a fuck

And I’ve gotta try ‘cos I’ve gotta know
If I’m a winner and the star of the show
Can’t stand routine for another day
Rules and regulations getting in my way
I’ve gotta

Break out and leave this life behind
Break out and see what I can find
Might lose I’m going to try my luck
Might win don’t really give a fuck

“Breakout” by Stiff Little Fingers

As a person seeking to find a better life for himself, to do his best to leave the past behind him, I get chills when this song comes on. Hard for me not to turn it up so I may feel it in my bones.

Beyond the lyrics, when listening to Inflammable Material, notice the guitar work between both Jake Burns and Ian McCallum. One song you can hear them work together is “Johnny Was,” where they go back and forth in beautiful harmony giving my ears an out-of-this-world, toe shaking, grab the sheets orgasm. Plus, bassists Ali McMordie lets it rip during “Here We Are Nowhere.” And much love to the man who holds the beat, drummer Steve Grantley, whose force can be heard with track nine on Inflammable Material, “Law and Order.”

And I’ve only scratched the surface with Stiff Little Fingers‘ debut album, Inflammable Material. If I was you and had the time, I’d head to whatever it is I use to stream music and give it a go. You won’t regret it as this is without a doubt, a timeless punk rock classic that needs to be heard by any punk rock enthusiasts. Before I go, know that they still tour and you can check out their schedule at

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