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4.8 out of 5 stars
All Mod Cons
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on 21 September 2013
This is a classic album from a fine band at their peak. The songs are full of angst, anger and a yearning for a different reality. A powerful and compelling album.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 18 February 2003
What is so important to note is that Weller & Co really did have their backs to the wall prior to this exceptional LP saving their career. Foxton had kept things ticking over during early '78 with 'News of the World' and 'David Watts ' providing some minor chart action, but Weller's song writing had effectively dried up.
Initial sessions for the LP were scrapped when the producers informed the group that the songs were 'cr**'.
Proving his genius at the age of 20, Weller comes back with an album so much reflecting the times and of such songwriting & performing quality that all the critics were silenced.
All Mod Cons is the definitive Jam LP, indeed it's probably the definitive New wave and Mod soundtrack to boot. Every song is a well-crafted affair, supplemented with superb musicianship from the groups sadly now dismissed other players.
Rarely has a band sounded so much in tune with each other. Foxtons slippery bass lines underpinned by the clinical drumming of Butler, serve as the perfect soundscape for weller's amazing Rickenbacker guitar scratching. Forget lengthy guitar solo's, you won't find that sort of slack here. Everything has a place and purpose. Songs are short, tight and relevant with the vocal interplay of the two vocalists never again bettered.
If there is a central theme (this is definitely not a concept album!) then this is reflected in the front cover where the group are featured in Spartan surroundings. The album mood is that of isolation from society, from the then commercialised punk movement, from relationships, even from each other. Some of the mood is certainly down-beat, even grim.
Of course Tube Station is an undoubted masterpiece. Never again did Weller quite hit the total senses overload of this tragic commuter tale of violence. The final lyrics 'And they took the key's and she'll think it's me' serve as a vivid reminder of the potential power of modern songwriting. Frightening stuff indeed.
Other notable highpoints include an early Jam nod to 'Stanley Road' in the shape of 'Place I love', the downfall of a rockstar portrayed by 'To be someone' (I am sorry to say the Noel Gallagher version of this is should never have got out! - it's truly awful), and the haunting 'In the crowd'
The songs are great, but it's the way the whole package hangs together that creates the masterpiece that this album really is. From the lyrics reflecting what life was like to be twenty in the grim late seventies, to the artwork, to the Mod references, to the fashion, to the style, to the vocal interplay, to the mystery track (English Rose), to the fact that Polydor were near to pulling the plug on this group and where would we be now without them? Essential.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 21 May 2005
This is the album that made The Jam the icons that they were ( are? )- They were always more than just Mr. Weller and the sum of all the parts was always better than just the front man ( good as he was/is ).
From the sublime beauty of English Rose through the angst of David Watts and the realism of Down In the Tube station At Midnight, the Jam portrayed the world as they saw it.
This was the genesis of all future Jam albums ( the bassline of To Be Someone being a prime example! )
A great band at their creative peak, this album showcases the talents of all three members.
Buy without hesitaion and be assured that you won't be left feeling short changed.
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Please note: This review is for the 1997 edition of the album, which was released as part of 'The Jam Remasters'. This version offered up great sound quality, but no extra tracks. It does contain a booklet with the original art work as the cover, and a reasonably detailed study of 'All Mod Cons', written by John Reed, who has written biographies about pop group Madness, and The Jam's frontman and vocalist Paul Weller.

In my opinion, The Jam's third record, released in 1978, is a very strong contender as these lads' best album, because virtually every track is a gem, and the whole record has a very polished sound. Whatever, it's my own personal favourite. If you don't want to pick up one of the many compilations out there, and instead wish to have a studio album as an introduction to their work, I would highly recommend that you opt for 'All Mod Cons'.

There are strong British Invasion pop influences running through 'All Mod Cons', most obviously on the cool cover of The Kinks' 'David Watts', which is a much faster version compared the original, of which I do favour. Two absolute classics are also here, the beautiful and tranquil 'English Rose', and the ever popular 'Down In The Tube Station At Midnight', with lyrics are unmistakably British. This hit single closes things out on a high note.

The Jams' third album, put together when Paul was only 20, is simply well-crafted, intelligent, witty, and catchy punk-rock music. I have no doubt that it will appeal to those people who wouldn't normally listen to such a genre.
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on 18 October 2013
This album was missing from my Jam collection so thought it about time i added it! Obviously a classicnot to be missed by any Jam fan.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 17 August 2007
The Jam...if they broke America...would have taken a more recognised place in music history.They inspired a youth movement,(namely a mod revival)and still inspire up and coming bands today.In a chart career that spanned just over five years,there was four number 1's,and a number 1 album, three top ten albums,not including albums released after the bands break up in 1982,also reaching top ten positions.
Ok...have I gushed long enough?,if you read this you more than likely are already a Jam fan,and probably have this album in some form...I have in vinyl and CD.But...THIS IS A MUST.Anyone who wants to hear The Jam at their best,has to have this album,plus the DVD,and Demo versions are a must.This album was argubly The Jam at their best,and like many others in the know...I am not inclined to disagree.All of you who don't know The Jam,or reckon you do...because you like Going Underground,or A Town Called Malice..(believe me, not the best stuff!! ) listen to what influences alot of music today.The Jam had influences,but made their own brand of music from the mix..that sounds just as fresh today.THIS IS PURE CLASS.All you Arctic Monkey,Kaiser Chiefs,Oasis fans...take note!! Buy,Look, and listen...money well spent..and you will be proud of this.
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on 19 January 2014
Outstanding reminder of days gone by, played it and all the words came flooding back. Wouldn't it be nice if they reunited
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
This is a classic from start to finish I owned the Album on Vinyl and Tape back in 1978. It was the first Album I bought on CD and I cannot wait for this edition. This is Paul Weller at his very best with some fantastic songs often imitated but never bettered.
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on 17 July 2014
Bought as a refresher for From The Jam gig. Great album and played even better live!
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on 10 May 2015
quick delivery, item as described, thanks, recommend seller 100%
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