The Jam: All Mod Cons

 |   |  1 min read

The Jam: All Mod Cons
If Liam Gallagher yearns for Oasis again and brother Noel still wants Paul Weller's career, then we need only go back to this '78 album by the Jam to hear Weller aspiring to be the post-punk Ray Davies.

And largely succeeding.

“To be someone must be a wonderful thing”, as the second track says.

This third album by the Jam steered by singer-songwriter Weller even included a cover of the Kinks' David Watts . . . and To Be Someone, the bitter Mr Clean and the bruising Billy Hunt were within Davies' social comment about Britain's class divisions.

What further elevated these tight 12 songs were the more contemporary street-level observations on 'A' Bomb in Wardour Street (the single had their non-album cover of the Who's So Sad About Us on the b-side) and Down in the Tube Station at Midnight.

As George Kay observed in Rip It Up at the time, Weller was “brilliantly moving from specific close-ups of society's stereotypes . . ,. then turns in his most moving, provocative songs as scalpel jobs of the modern world”.

The Listener reviewer said of this NME album of the year, “the first two albums merely circled the honeypot, but this one strikes home”.

If Dave Marsh in Rolling Stone was unimpressed (“a record that's nearly catastrophic, weak at the surface and almost rotten underneath”) his was a lone voice.

All Mod Cons – with the often ignored if slightly awkward acoustic ballad ballad English Rose showing Weller's love for his country amidst the chaos of the times – is worthy of a place in any collection.

JB_logoIt is on Spotify here (with the longer version of In the Crowd with cool backward guitar pyrotechnics at the end).

But we mention this album because it is out on vinyl and is another to add to your expanding and diverse record collection.

And it is just $25 at JB Hi-Fi stores here.

Check out this too. 

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Hi-Fi Vinyl articles index

Bob Marley and the Wailers: Kaya

Bob Marley and the Wailers: Kaya

Coming between the mighty Exodus of '77 and the subsequent studio album Survival (also equally political and righteous), Kaya was a breathing space where Marley mostly engaged with the One Love... > Read more

Fatboy Slim: You've Come a Long Way Baby

Fatboy Slim: You've Come a Long Way Baby

Slightly funny and true story: Back in the distant past Fatboy Slim -- aka famous DJ Norman Cook -- was coming to New Zealand and at the Herald we arranged for one our feature writers -- who'd... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

The Incredible String Band: Wee Tam and The Big Huge (1968)

The Incredible String Band: Wee Tam and The Big Huge (1968)

Sometimes for my own private amusement I will sing aloud The Incredible String Band's The Son of Noah's Brother in its entirety. All 16 seconds of it. The lyrics run, "Many were the... > Read more

THE ROLLING STONES LIVE IN CHICAGO (2002): Men of Stone

THE ROLLING STONES LIVE IN CHICAGO (2002): Men of Stone

From the back row of Chicago's United Centre, about four storeys above the stage, Mick Jagger - not the biggest of men anyway - is the size of a matchstick held at arm's length.But even without his... > Read more