Following confidently on from the relatively straightforward punk purity of their first two albums, Stiff Little Fingers entered the 1980s with Go for It, an album whose sense of adventure was as radical as its sense of purpose, a raw affirmation of the rock and reggae hybrid that had been pioneered elsewhere (the Clash and the Ruts come most immediately to mind), but was now to be twisted through Jake Burns' own private vision of punk at its most personally committed. The opening "Roots Radicals Rockers and Reggae," of course, sets those intentions out plain as day, while "Safe as Houses" and, among the three bonus tracks, a sterling cover of the Wailing Souls' "Mr. Fire Coal Man" confirm the Belfast band's status among the era's most convincing exponents of the mélange. Two excellent hit singles, "Just Fade Away" and "Silver Lining," bolstered what was already shaping up to be Stiff Little Fingers' finest album; the addition of "Back to Front," a Top 50 smash the previous year, and a rousing live version of "Doesn't Make It Alright" (the B-side of "Just Fade Away") complete a sensational reissue.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Dave Thompson