My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Brief Background: All Mod Cons is the third album from the English band The Jam. It was recorded through the summer of 1978 and was released in November of that year.
What I think: I’ve always meant to listen to an album by The Jam, but never really got around to it. The songs I’ve heard on the radio always had a sort of pleasant sound, even if the lyrical topics were anything but. The album is kind of that way as well. Many of the songs concern class differences, but the recording is really clean and smooth. It’s like listening to half the audio on a Clash song. Strummer’s harsh vocals would be gone and anything grating in the music would be missing as well. That is of course the genius of The Clash… the sweet with the sour. What is left is just a sweet, smooth, and soft sound that has its merits, but gets to be boring.
To me the stand out songs are the last on each side. “In the Crowd” really reminds me of something the Lemonheads would do ten years later, before throwing things back to Revolver era Beatles psychedelia at the end, and “Down in the Tube Station at Midnight” has some of the grating aggression that is missing from the rest of the album.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? I’m glad I heard it, but that’s just my general curiosity. I think most could skip it and not miss much.
Rating (Out of 5) 2
Is this my first time hearing this album? Yes (315/414)