This single captured the mood of the time, as riots swept Britain in the summer of 1979. "Babylon's Burning" is about the fiery collapse of western civilization.
The Ruts were heavily involved in anti-racism causes and Southall born lead singer Malcolm Owen was particularly affected by the race riots in his hometown in April 1979. Another song on the album, "Jah War," is about those riots.
This was featured in the 1980 film Times Square.
This was The Ruts biggest hit and they never recovered from the death of Malcolm Owen from a heroin overdose the following year.