Town Called Malice

The Thatcher series continues with the Jam. Here’s Paul Harris’ excellent description ofTown Called Malice in theGuardian article I keep going on about:

Whether latter-day audiences truly understand its lyrics is an
interesting question, because Town Called Malice is not one of those
supposedly “classic” songs whose lyrics can mean anything to anyone at
any time. Its words are a razor-sharp commentary on a specific social
moment: the austere, strife-torn years of 1981 and 1982, when deflation
was let loose, riots tore through English cities, unemployment headed
towards three million, and Britain lost a fifth of its manufacturing
capacity. Weller’s words evoked it all: “Rows and rows of disused
milkfloats stand dying in the dairy yard/And a hundred lonely housewives
clutch empty milk bottles to their hearts … To either cut down on beer
or the kids new gear/It’s a big decision in a town called Malice.”

Okay, it’s time for Paul Weller and company to kick out the jams, motherfuckers:

2 thoughts on “Town Called Malice

  1. To get the full implication of the song read a book by Neville Shute called “a town like Alice” about a British nurse who survives the Second World War and emigrated to a sleepy, miserable, sexist, dying sheep station in Australia. She totally revitalizes and humanize a life in the town by creating jobs for the women, incomes for them, and then opening places where they can spend their money socially without being hemmed in by masculine public spaces shich were all based on drinking or fighting. It’s pretty fascinating like a sim city build an economy and society by creating meaningful value and exchange.

  2. Man, I haven’t heard this song since MTV quit playing music. LOL. I keep expecting one of these songs to be Roger Waters Fletcher Memorial Home. I’ve loved this series, Adrastos, so thanks for that.

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