Stiff Little Fingers
Guitar and Drum
Kung Fu Records
Not a bad score for Kung Fu to land legendary punks SLF for their twelfth studio disc, the simply and aptly titled Guitar and Drum. And that’s just what we get, a fundamentally sound, organically grown throwback-molded product that bridges 25 years in a matter of a few bare chords and string bends. It’s been about that long since the inspirational old school classic Inflammable Material emerged shortly after the dawning of the UK Punk scene that made heroes of The ‘Pistols, The Damned and The Clash. After a number of well received releases (Nobody’s Heroes and Go For It) and some highly populated shows, SLF went the way of most from back in the day: they split and sought refuge in soloism, until the end of the decade when they regrouped.
The Kung Fu label, better known for presenting the poppier side of punk and the poseurish leanings of today’s younger talents, gets neither from the surprisingly not-so-grizzled vets. Although after one listen, it’s undeniable as to their degree of influence on many of today’s bands, loud rock, pop/punk or otherwise. This fourteen track foray is the band’s first studio effort in five years. Showcasing a flexibility over the fretboard that belies the “stiffness” in their moniker, the band mixes social awareness (“Can’t Get Away With That”) and self-preservation (“Still Burning,” “Be True To Yourself”) for a solid return delivered with roof blowing appeal, rich acoustics and sharp hooks.
Stiff Little Fingers: www.slf.com