Wednesday, November 26, 2008

82. The Jam - All Mod Cons

I didn't really fall in love with the Jam until 1983, when Snap! came out and everyone was listening to Town Called Malice and Bitterest Pill. But it wasn't Snap! that did it.My coworker Pat (who at the time was in a band called the Dead Virgins) told me to put the compilation down and listen to all the previous albums. He then handed me his cassette of All Mod Cons and wrote down the words to one song from the album and told me to listen to it.

The first time I heard Down in the Tube Station at Midnight - about a guy trying to get home from work to his wife but gets jacked by some thugs in the a subway station, was when I really fell for the band, especially Weller. It was Weller’s ability to tell a complete, chilling story here, combined with the perfect pace of the song; rise and fall, slow and frenzied, giving the whole thing an air of drama, that mademe see this band for everything they were. The build up as the guy is laying there, beaten and describing his what he sees as he's on the floor dying, (The last thing that I saw As I lay there on the floor Was jesus saves painted by an atheist nutter) and then the lines “I glanced back on my life and thought about my wife cause they took the keys - and she’ll think its me.” That stayed with me. Haunted me. I still to this day - over 20 years later - get that same gut-punch feeling when I listen to this. That, kids, is what turns a good song into a great song and that is what made me a full on fan of The Jam.

Favorite song: Down in the Tube Station at Midnight


fatherjack said...

My memories of listening to The Jam are all centred on the summer of 1985. It was my final year at school - after April, only going in to take exams; we had bonfires most nights with a stereo on an extension lead from the garage playing The Jam, The Clash, Selector, etc. Truly halcyon days.

My school days were certainly not the best years of my life as most people seemed to enjoy telling me. Plenty of my fellow students saw to that but leaving school, that was awesome.

A-Bomb in Wardour Street, David Watts, Start, Down in a Tube Station.


RR Ryan said...

And then the band broke up and Weller formed Style Council. Unlike most Jam fans, I fell in love all over again.

michele said...

I love the Style Council!