The reason that I know who The Jam are is because my older brother
was obsessed with them when I was a youngster and followed the career
of dear old Mr Weller in what has now been several decades. I eventually
caught on. He wasnt alone in his admiration, obviously, and
its unlikely that I need to give any background to this record.
But, just in case youve been away to the moon for the past thirty-odd
years, or perhaps youre an alien life form, Setting Sons
is arguably The Jams most ambitious album; true to their trademark
spiky, political edge throughout but embracing an apparent concept
of three friends that reunite after a war, only to find they have
nothing left in common.
Indeed, documenting the resigned dreariness that was (and probably
still is) modern Britain is what the band were (and probably still
are) famed for, although theyve become potentially less cynical
and sneering, considering this is a well-timed release just before
Christmas. Either way, diehard fans and new generations alike wont
be short of rebellious ammunition to either relive or discover in
what comprises either a deluxe or super deluxe version, now brimming
over with even more extras, mostly unheard demos and live versions
of classic tracks, all finished off with a good dose of class hatred
and honest portraiture that still relates today. The Jams sound
inspired umpteen guitar bands after them and so is just as fresh now
as it was then- 53 tracks in all here, each around three minutes of
some of the smartest brand of their generation, looking no further
than tracks like the well-known Eton Rifles, the elaborate
storytelling of Little Boy Soldiers, contrasting string
section of Smithers-Jones and even the cover version of
Heat Wave to demonstrate why The Jam are just as vital
as they were 35 years ago.
A must-have gift for receding or non-receding Mods everywhere.