This Is the Modern World

This Is the Modern World is the second studio album by British band The Jam, released in November 1977. The album was released less than seven months after their debut album In the City,[9] and reached No. 22 on the UK Albums Chart.

This Is the Modern World
The Jam - This is the Modern World.jpg
Studio album by
Released18 November 1977
Recorded25 August – 21 September 1977
StudioBasing Street Studios, London
The Jam chronology
In the City
This Is the Modern World
All Mod Cons
Singles from This Is the Modern World
  1. "The Modern World"
    Released: 28 October 1977
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3/5 stars[1]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music3/5 stars[2]
Q3/5 stars[4]
Record Mirror5/5 stars[5]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide2.5/5 stars[6]
Spin Alternative Record Guide6/10[7]
The Village VoiceB+[8]

Although generally met with negative reviews by music critics upon release, This Is the Modern World has been described as being an album "with far more light and shade" than In the City.[10]

The only single from This Is the Modern World was the censored version of "The Modern World", which peaked at No. 36 on the UK Singles Chart.[11]

Cover photographyEdit

The photography for the album was taken by Gered Mankowitz and David Redfern. The front cover depicts the band standing beneath London's Westway.[12]

Track listingEdit

All tracks are written by Paul Weller, except where noted.

Side one
1."The Modern World"2:31
2."London Traffic" (Bruce Foxton)1:49
4."Life from a Window"2:52
5."The Combine"2:20
6."Don't Tell Them You're Sane" (Bruce Foxton)3:40
Side two
1."In the Street, Today" (Paul Weller, Dave Waller)1:31
2."London Girl"2:40
3."I Need You (For Someone)"2:41
4."Here Comes the Weekend"3:30
5."Tonight at Noon"3:01
6."In the Midnight Hour" (Steve Cropper, Wilson Pickett)1:54
Total length:31:19

Original US releaseEdit

  1. "The Modern World"
  2. "All Around the World"
  3. "I Need You (For Someone)"
  4. "London Traffic" (Bruce Foxton)
  5. "Standards"
  6. "Life from a Window"
  7. "In the Midnight Hour" (Steve Cropper, Wilson Pickett)
  8. "In the Street, Today" (Paul Weller, Dave Waller)
  9. "London Girl"
  10. "Here Comes the Weekend"
  11. "The Combine"
  12. "Tonight at Noon"
  13. "Don't Tell Them You're Sane" (Bruce Foxton)

The US release had a different track order, included the "censored" single version of "The Modern World", and added the single "All Around the World" which was released in the UK between their first two albums. "All Around the World" had been their biggest UK hit to date, peaking at No. 13, a placement they would not match until 1979 when "The Eton Rifles" peaked at No. 3.[11] Thereafter, no domestically released single by The Jam would ever reach a peak position lower than No. 4.[11]


Credits are adapted from the album's liner notes.[13]

The Jam



Chart (1977–78) Peak
UK Albums (OCC)[14] 22
US Bubbling Under the Top LPs (Billboard)[15] 1


Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[16] Silver 60,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ Woodstra, Chris. "This Is the Modern World – The Jam". AllMusic. Retrieved 3 July 2005.
  2. ^ Larkin, Colin (2011). "Jam". The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-0-85712-595-8.
  3. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas (20 October 2017). "The Jam: In the City / This Is the Modern World / The Polydor Demos: February 1977 / Live 1977 + John Peel Sessions". Pitchfork. Retrieved 20 October 2017.
  4. ^ "The Jam: This Is the Modern World". Q. No. 365. November 2016. p. 117.
  5. ^ Cain, Barry (19 November 1977). "This is the modern world". Record Mirror. p. 12.
  6. ^ Sheffield, Rob (2004). "The Jam". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian (eds.). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). Simon & Schuster. pp. 416–17. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  7. ^ Sheffield, Rob (1995). "Jam". In Weisbard, Eric; Marks, Craig (eds.). Spin Alternative Record Guide. Vintage Books. pp. 195–96. ISBN 0-679-75574-8.
  8. ^ Christgau, Robert (30 January 1978). "Christgau's Consumer Guide". The Village Voice. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  9. ^ Lester, Paul (December 1998). "Last Man Standing". Uncut. No. 19. Retrieved 24 March 2017.
  10. ^ Reed, John (1997). This Is the Modern World (CD liner notes). The Jam (reissue ed.). Polydor Records. 537 418-2.
  11. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 277. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  12. ^ "The Jam '1977' 40th Anniversary Box Set To Be Released This October". 20 October 2017. Retrieved 17 January 2021.
  13. ^ This Is the Modern World (liner notes). The Jam. Polydor Records. 1977. 2383 475.CS1 maint: others (link)
  14. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 1 November 2020.
  15. ^ "Bubbling Under the Top LPs". Billboard. Vol. 90 no. 5. 4 February 1978. p. 30. Retrieved 1 November 2020.
  16. ^ "British album certifications – The Jam – This Is the Modern World". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 5 November 2020. Select albums in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Type This Is the Modern World in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.