My iPod #450: The Jam – Going Underground

*Phew*. Had to take a bit of a break over these past few days. University work suddenly caught up with me, had to get it all done over this weekend. Now that’s all finished, let’s continue. How many have I got to do….. Four?! Okay. Well, here’s the first.

“Going Underground” was a standalone single released by punk rock/mod band The Jam in 1980. Funnily enough it was actually meant to be the B-Side to another song by the band named “Dreams of Children“, but a labelling error led to a reversal of roles and “Going Underground” ended up getting more airplay. The track went straight to number one in the UK upon its release and spent three weeks there.

The track written by Paul Weller expresses concern with our society in which we all seem to get what we are asked for but ultimately none of it does the world any good in the long run. We vote for place our trust in war-happy leaders who will and carry on with our lives as if everything’s okay. Weller’s is not about that life, and decides that the only way to escape it all is by going underground while life goes on above.

It is a classic, yes. Goes without saying. Delivered with a sharp vocal take, a busy bassline and biting guitars, “Going Underground”is a quintessential British punk song with sarcasm and cynicism being the main ways in which its serious subject matter is put across.


Author: Jamie Kyei Manteaw

An English student at Coventry University who spends most days listening to music (old and new) and reading and writing about it, however informal it may be. And studying too, obviously.

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