Home > 1970s, All - Songs, Tracks & Music, Punk > The Jam – Private Hell (1979)

The Jam – Private Hell (1979)

An old friend posted a track by The Jam on his facebook page earlier today and it reminded me that I hadn’t yet got The Jam on this blog. This is a remarkable record.

From 1978-1982, The Jam were my obsession. My favourite band of all-time (up to that point) and a political as well as musical  inspiration. All peaked when attending their near final gig at Wembley Arena in 1982 (supported by Big Country …).

The Style Council followed and, while a few singles were superb, the earnest sanctimony of the enterprise gradually eroded interest. When The Smiths emerged in 1983 and New Order hit the motherlode of pop perfection, The Jam began to feel like the clumsy past, a throwback to the unremittingly grim times of the early 1980s recession.

I fell out of love with them for years … a painful separation.

Not sure when things changed but I began to re-realise that Strange Town, When You’re Young, Down in the Tube Station at Midnight and all the other classic tracks retained their vitality. Still had meaning for a rapidly ageing father of several ….

Setting Sons was The Jam’s 4th LP and is consistently brilliant. I’d always liked the track Private Hell but it seemed unusual in The Jam canon. In recent years, Paul Weller has described the influence that Joy Division had had on their work and this track is the one where the influence is clearest.

Pounding bass, lascerating guitar and, like Ian Curtis, lyrics that just have to come from an older, more world weary mind. An absolute classic.

Closer than close, you see yourself

A mirrored image of what you wanted to be

An unbelievable live version from 1980 then the LP original.

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  1. December 19, 2011 at 9:28 pm
  2. July 22, 2012 at 9:23 pm

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