Closing St Patrick’s Night with a [nother] plea for an #AlternativeUlster?

Taking a lead from tonight’s BBC’s Newsnight, here’s an anthem which might speak to those protesting loss (of whatever you miss from the past)…

Nothin’ for us in Belfast
The Pound’s so old it’s a pity
OK, there’s the trident in Bangor
Then walk back to the city
We ain’t got nothin’ but they don’t really care
They don’t even know you know
Just want our money
And we can take it or leave it
What we need

[Chorus] An Alternative Ulster
Grab it and change it it’s yours
Get an Alternative Ulster
Ignore the bores and their laws
Get an Alternative Ulster
Be an anti-security force
Alter your native Ulster
Alter your native land

Take a look where you’re livin’
You got the Army on your street
And the RUC dog of repression
Is barking at your feet
Is this the kind of place you wanna live?
Is this where you wanna be?
Is this the only life we’re gonna have?
What we need is


They say they’re a part of you
But that’s not true you know
They say they’ve got control of you
And that’s a lie you know
They say you will never be
Free free free

Get an
Alternative Ulster
Alternative Ulster
Alternative Ulster

Or to put it in other terms…

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

Woman hold her head and cry,
‘Cause her son had been shot down in the street and died
From a stray bullet.


  • MainlandUlsterman

    The first SLF album was fantastic. The message was great too. It punctured the self-image of the paramilitaries as being these admirable rebels, the anti-establishment champions of the people. The reality was they were selfish, deluded tw**s who screwed up everyone else for their own sick joyride – SLF got that brilliantly.

    Pity the other albums were a bit crap 🙂 “Nobody’s Heroes” was OK but didn’t have the thrashy edge of “Inflammable Material”. It got a bit safe and a bit TOTP; though “Fly The Flag” I’m quite fond of.

    To be fair, a lot of bands that started out punk-ish struggled for what to do next. The Clash were a bit rubbish by the early 80s I reckon, though I remained loyal at the time; and then there was Steve Jones and Paul Cook’s The Professionals, which was OK but again just a bit safe and unchallenging. I think you had to adapt into something differently New Wavey or face turning slowly to mush. Joy Division showed how to step up several gears emerging from punk (having been Warsaw); Siouxsie and the Banshees found their own schtick with the dark proto-goth stuff they started doing on ‘Juju’; and The Fall are the best example of remaining angular and awkward while moving the music forward through the years.

    I think SLF fell back into a kind of rocky style that didn’t quite work. But we’ll always have ‘Inflammable Material’.