- Anvilicious: Quite a few of their more politically charged songs ended up like this. The most anvilicious of them all, though, are probably Racist Friend and War Crimes.
- Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The song "Holiday Fortnight" on the second album is an easy listening Latin jazz instrumental, at right angles to the style of the rest of the record.
- Covered Up: Their version of "A Message to You Rudy". Two of their earlier songs, "Gangsters" and "Too Much Too Young", also borrowed heavily from earlier Jamaican ska songs.
- Face of the Band: Mostly Terry Hall and Neville Staple. Also, Jerry Dammers after Terry and Neville left.
- Narm: While Jerry Dammers was a talented songwriter, some of his lyrics could leave something to be desired.
- Nightmare Fuel: "The Boiler".
- Values Dissonance: For being a such a socially & politically-conscious group, several of the songs off their debut (particularly "Stupid Marriage", "Little Bitch" and "Too Much Too Young") show a negative and often derogatory attitude towards women.