The Jam's reign at the top of the British charts really began with 1978's "Down in the Tube Station at Midnight." Picking up where he left off with "'A' Bomb in Wardour Street," Paul Weller drew a devastating character sketch of a young man attacked by jackbooted thugs in the subway station as he headed home to a romantic dinner with his wife. Prior to this song, Weller's work was stronger on its raw, vital musicality than it was on its lyrics, which tend to be passionate outbursts of rage and passion. With "'A' Bomb," he began to deepen his palette, but here, he knew how to harness and focus his vocabulary. Each line was filled with detail -- the "smiling, beguiling" coin, the thugs that smell like "Wormwood scrubs" -- and he heightens the tension not by firing on all cylinders, as he did on "'A' Bomb," but by tightening the screws slowly throughout the song, only letting out a minimum amount of tension on the choruses. The verse are shockingly sparse, driven by a tripping bass and light percussion. As a matter of fact, the band only breaks loose at the end, after the man lies beaten on the floor of the station, staring at graffiti ("Jesus Saves, written by some atheist nutter") as he realizes the thugs are headed back to his home to meet his wife, who's eagerly awaiting his arrival. It's a chilling scenario, to say the least, and even if it sprung from the headlines of the late '70s (actually, attacking jackbooted skinheads was sort of risky for punks, since they formed the backbone of the audience), Weller's details and narrative make "Down in the Tube Station at Midnight" transcend its time. And its clever, impassioned lyrics and textured music, along with the Jam's impeccable sense of style, meant that it was the song that ushered in the Mod Revival era.