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Stiff Little Fingers, Throw Rag

Bombs away: Throw Rag performs explosive punk.
Kevin Westenberg

Belfast's Stiff Little Fingers are a legendary band, a punk classic despite the oxymoron. Their mixture of politics and smart songwriting brought them critical acclaim, but fast-forwarding 25 years and a couple of reunion tours and records later, the band is in the same category as the Buzzcocks: playing new material (with Jam bass player Bruce Foxton) that doesn't come close to their original stuff. Still, hearing songs like "Suspect Device" and "Alternative Ulster" played live could be fun despite the nostalgia trip. One of the opening bands, however, really makes it worth going to the show. Throw Rag is from Salton Sea, the toxic-waste-infested dead sea of Southern California, and it shows. Playing raucous punk (with a washboard player!) that's catchy as all get out and set to a nautical theme, the band's live show is super high energy.


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