The Jam: “Going Underground”

Posted: February 9, 2018 in THE CLASH of Cover Tunes
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Tune du Jour: “Going Underground” – The Jam
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Buffalo Tom vs. Da Lata with Floetic Lara vs. Lostprophets
Broc 3 - Cover Me Impressed

Everybody’s Dressin’ Funny … Cover Me Impressed!


Read it in the Sunday Papers …

A Washington state man was arrested after he allegedly strapped a bag of marijuana to an arrow and shot it into a prison. Authorities said that David Wayne Jordan tried to shoot the arrow into an exercise yard at the Whatcom County Jail, but overshot the target, with his special delivery landing on a roof. When Jordan, 36, was arrested, he claimed he’d been trying to hit a squirrel. “He had no explanation as to why squirrel hunting requires attaching marijuana to an arrow,” said Sheriff Bill Elfo.


The Original


The greatest 3 minutes of music ever? Maybe …

The Jam:


THE CLASH of Cover Tunes


Buffalo Tom vs. Da Lata and Floetic Lara vs. Lostprophets
Buffalo Tom:

Da Lata and Floetic Lara:


Okay so the lead singer, Ian Watkins, is a despicable wretch of a human being. But if you could separate the degenerate from the song, you’d have to admit that this is a pretty damn good cover.

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. It is your solemn responsibility to decide which cover song prevails. In other words … Which Side Are You On?!!? 


  1. Cuspid says:

    Three good covers of one of my personal anthems going back to the very first time I heard it in 1980. I already spoke of this tune when it was included on my Desert Island Disc list of 8. No need to repeat it here now.

    I like that these 3 covers are all in a different style. Good work Dubsy.

    I gotta give this on to Lostprophets. On one hand, they pretty much tried to match the spirit of the original without bringing any new ideas to the table. On the other hand, they totally nailed it. This song just screams for urgency and drive. And from their vocals, guitar and beat I think they fully achieved both.

    Hearing the Jam do this song always made me want to grab my guitar and plug in. Listening to Lostprophets’ version makes me feel the same.

  2. Kerry Black says:

    I always liked this song a lot, but not because of anything lyrical or thematic, but because it was a catchy, upbeat, toe-tappin’ song with an edge. Something you play in the dorm while you’re psyched and getting ready to go to a party. A nice little gem that’ll have you pogo-ing around shouting “Oi! Oi! Oi!”.

    Now, as for this Buffalo Tom version: Maybe if I didn’t know the original, I’d be able to take it on its own terms and find something about it to like. But as is, toward the second half of the song, I was impatiently waiting for it to end so I could get to the other covers. Not a good sign. The other day in Pete’s description of another cover wrote “…they destroyed the heart of the song.” I was reminded of that upon hearing this Buffalo Tom cover.

    I never heard of the second act, but I liked it and was so grateful at that point I thought they might get the vote.

    Lostprophets did a great version and get the vote. Incidentally, they’re Welsh, so there’s the Wales connection Cuspid was hoping for.

  3. RDubbs says:

    No clunkers here. All three approached the song with the immense reverence it deserves. Buffalo Tom’s version does stray and is clearly the back end of the lot. I love what Da Lata did with the song and she very nearly got my vote. But in the end I had to hold my nose and vote for the straight-forward yet pitch-perfect version by the Lostprophets. I wonder if that is how it felt voting for Donald Trump? Nah, the Lostprophets had only one degenerate scum-sucker in its midst whilst the Donald has a large cadre of shit-tubers in his galley.

    BTW Da Lata and Lostprophets also produced excellent acoustic/unplugged versions of the song.

  4. Pete Black says:

    This is a great song and was in consideration for my eight. I like Buffalo Tom and I think they had more than a touch of Husker Du and Dinosaur Jr. in them. J. Mascis produced their first two albums so it’s a little surprising that they stuck to the slow pace throughout the entire version. Musta Notta Got Da Lata did a nice melodic and soulful take but after those two, didn’t it make you yearn for a full out power rip on this song? Yes! Lostprophets delivered and did it sound similar to the Jam’s take? So what! The Jam own this. If anyone has The Complete Jam on DVD or can probably go to YouTube their live version to a home crowd in their prime is hard to top for any trio. I take my hat off, as well as other clothing for any three piece which can deliver with power, precision, melody, intelligence and passion. 5 stars.

  5. Arnold Plotnick says:

    I like Buffalo Tom, but their version was a real snore. Yes, The Lostprophets do a rocking, faithful version that’s very good, but I have to say, I liked the Da Lata version best. I like the lead singer’s voice, and adding a little ska to the song enhanced it more than I would have expected (especially since I’m usually such a purist about these things.)

  6. Lucky h says:

    Great song, was split between first two versions but really liked the vibe from Da Lata …. did that Lostprophet dude really rape a baby?????

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