When Neurotics frontman Steve Drewett wrote this song for the 1986 mini-album Repercussions, its chief target was the South African apartheid regime and thankfully that has long since been overturned. But every other point of reference in this rallying cry against inaction sounds depressingly contemporary. "Why are you so quiet?" Drewett asks in the chorus, "when these are fighting times?"

Inspired by the original white-hot crucible of the British punk rock movement, this socialist trio from Essex railed against Margaret Thatcher's heartless British government, which progressively privatised state-owned services and cut back social funding, turning their home town of Harlow into a grey and lifeless graveyard for young people with no jobs and no hope. And if Steve, Colin and Simon had one message, it would be that talking about it is not enough. "Evil will triumph, if good men do nothing," as they put it their best known song, Kick Out The Tories. And it's a refrain to which they returned in Fighting Times, with the thought-provoking words: "Your silence can be misconstrued as a vote of confidence".


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