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Friday, 24 July 2009

Forgotten Album Friday #6 - The Clash, Give Em Enough Rope

The traditional wisdom is that this album was sandwiched between two classic punk / new wave albums in "The Clash" and "London Calling" and there is some merit in this point of view. However that has led to what I think is an absolute classic album to be More or less completely overlooked, certainly as far as most casual listeners are concerned and there appears little in the way of a re-visit in the way some of the other Clash material has been.

The album was released in November 1978 followed very quickly by the lead single Tommy Gun and within a year the Clash had peaked (?) releasing The Cost of Living ep and were about to unleash the magnificent London Calling lp.

The album was recorded after a particularly hair raising experience for the group in Jamaica and
tensions in the studio were obviously channeled out positively into the songs, and they emerge spitting fire and defiance, refusing to lie down.

This would be a 5 star album if the Classic-Clash triumvirate of 'White Man (in Hammersmith Palais)', 'Complete Control' and 'Clash City Rockers' had been originally included (some of the greatest music the UK has ever produced!) but that's being greedy. It stands up just fine without outsiders and is only slightly a lesser cousin to The Clash and London Calling. 'Safe European Home', 'Tommy Gun' 'Cheapskates' and the corny Mick Jones ballad 'Stay Free' all tick the classic Brit-Rock boxes.
Key tracks:
Safe European Home
Tommy Gun
All The Young Punks (new boots and Contracts)
Pressure Drop (b-side)
Guns On The Roof


  1. A great album Norm....The Clash were always way ahead of the pack and with Strummer at the helm, belligerently brilliant.

  2. Thanks for all your comments - much appreciated!