A Stiff Little Fingers – Suspect Device.

Stiff Little Fingers are the best Punk Band ever. Their brand of politics and poetry lit up the scene.

They produced a number of exceptional songs with amazing lyrics.

SLF came roaring out of Ireland with the force of an incendiary bomb. They harnessed the violence of the troubles and sang about their own vision of a better future. The anger and fury suited the punk style.

Just brilliant.


Inflammable material is planted in my head
It’s a suspect device that’s left 2000 dead
Their solutions are our problems
They put up the wall
On each side time and prime us
And make sure we get fuck all
They play their games of power
They mark and cut 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 out
Suss suspect device

They take away our freedom
In the name of liberty
Why don’t they all just clear off
Why won’t they let us be
They make us feel indebted
For saving us from hell
And then they put us through it
It’s time the bastards fell


Don’t believe them
Don’t believe them
Question everything you’re told
Just take a look around you
At the bitterness and spite
Why can’t we take over and try to put it right


We’re a suspect device if we do what we are told
But a suspect device can score an own goal
I’m a suspect device the Army can’t defuse
You’re a suspect device they know they can’t refuse
We’re gonna blow up in their face


8 thoughts on “A Stiff Little Fingers – Suspect Device.

  1. From Ireland? No, from Belfast, Northern Ireland, an entirely different animal.
    I think Punk found them as beforehand they’d been playing Deep Purple covers for some time. The Undertones, quite rightly took umbrage with them for making the Belfast troubles into something sensational and almost cartoon-like. They pissed a lot of us off and we never took them seriously like England did. What did they know.

    1. Hi Sean – thanks for the Irish/Northern Ireland perspective.
      I think Punk found a lot of young groups and energised them.
      For me they produced a series of brilliant songs and I don’t think they trivialised the troubles though, did they?

      1. My point was actually that they were already going before Punk came along and they didn’t form ‘because’ of Punk, like most of the bands. I think that makes a difference and in their case at least they could play a bit.
        Yes they did trivialise the troubles as I explained. They were making pop songs about it and it really wasn’t very pop-fun had you been there living with that shit. Which is why The Undertones rightly complained. They never stooped that low and were respected for that.
        It’s all so long ago now and no matter now, but I think had you been there living with that shit then you might understand it a little better.

      2. Sean – I accept your point. A lot of Punk Bands, like the Stranglers, were already doing other stuff but were energised by the Punk movement and went off into a different direction. Being able to play gave them an edge.
        From my perspective they didn’t trivialise the situation. They highlighted it for me. I thought they were more political and outspoken than anyone else. That did it for me. There was genuine anger and outrage as far as I could see. I liked the Undertones and respect their totally different approach to the troubles. If I had lived in Ireland or Belfast I might have had a totally different attitude.

  2. Forget to say, forgetting all the politics, I thought the record just as a self-standing record was great and certainly their best.

I'd like to hear from you...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.