Seventeen Going Under lyrics prove Sam Fender is the voice of the North

Posted on 25 January 2022
By Tess Penman
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NME album of the year award winner Sam Fender has cemented himself as the sound of the working class, with Seventeen Going Under shedding a damning light on the darkness millions face, living through austerity.

The record is a cry for help, made from the tears and long suffering of the British underclass, which pours out in this album, which is a rollercoaster of emotions.

Fender accurately depicts the reality of growing up in gritty northern England and the sheer helplessness of living through Government cuts to support.

On opening track Seventeen Going Under he sings:

“she said the debt, the debt, the debt / so I thought about shifting gear / now she wept and wept and wept / luck came and died round here / you see my mother, the DWP sees a number.”

You either cannot relate to a single lyric he sings, or relate to every word, which paints a perfect picture of the class divide in Britain.

The contempt for world leaders and the mega-rich is shown in Aye, which touches on the loss of identity in politics and how politicians are now viewed as part of the greedy elite.

“I don’t have time for the very few / they never had time for me and you.”

The North Shields native also embraces the resilience of the working class in Getting Started, he highlights how growing up poor, you are forced to stay hopeful, because hope is all you have:

“I’m only getting started / don’t mean to be disheartened / felt like giving up so many times before / but I’m still here grinding.”

Sam Fender gives a voice to the voiceless on this flawless masterpiece. He is bringing politics back to Rock ’n’ Roll, where it has always belonged.

The Geordie is unapologetic about the discomfort his sound brings and that is the best music of all.

Sam is set to perform at the upcoming Brits and he’s also the critic’s choice for Album of the Year.