This fine album from 1983 showcases Dick Gaughan's songwriting and political conscience, as well as some fine writing by others. A little more 'electric' than his earlier releases, the sound and arrangements should come as no surprise to those familiar with his fine, earlier work with the band Five Hand Reel (O that their work was available today on cd...!!!).
Every song on this cd is a strong one -- and this release, thanks to the good folks at Appleseed, contains two bonus tracks, including Leon Rosselson's wonderful tribute to the Diggers, 'World turned upside-down'. Also present here is another Rosselson classic, 'Stand up for Judas'. The title track sums up Gaughan's philosophy of song very nicely -- entertainment is all well and good, but these are songs to shake the listener's mind and soul, to make them think about their world and what they can do to make it a better place. The pairing of 'Prisoner 562'/'Song of choice' drives home the lesson of the evil that mankind is capable of, both by acting directly and by standing idly by, choosing to do nothing in its face. 'The father's song' is one of the most poignant expressions of a parent's wish for a better world for his child that I have ever heard. 'Think again' holds the stupidity of the cold war mentality up in society's face. And only Dick Gaughan could take Joe South's 60s anthem 'Games people play' and make it meaningful for the present-day listener.
This album can entertain, but it can also make you angry enough to ask yourself, 'What can I do...?'