Going Left Right

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"Going Left Right"
Going Left Right Department S.jpeg
7" UK release
Single by Department S
A-side"Going Left Right"
B-side"She's Expecting You"
Released19 June 1981
Format7" and 12" vinyl
LabelStiff Records
Songwriter(s)Vaughn Toulouse, Mark Taylor, Mike Herbage
Producer(s)David Tickle
Department S singles chronology
"Is Vic There?"
"Going Left Right"
"I Want"

"Going Left Right" is the second single by post-punk band Department S, released on 19 June 1981 on Stiff Records.[1][2] It was their second single, following "Is Vic There?", and was produced by David Tickle.[1][3]


The song was considered a sophomore slump, as it only reached No. 55 on the UK Singles Chart[4] despite considerable airplay.[5] Guitarist Mike Herbage later described the song as "an aggressive, trance and beat driven track"[5] but expressed surprise at the fact that it charted at all, calling its placing "probably higher than it had any right to, really". Vocalist Vaughn Toulouse was a bit more positive, saying, "I think 'I Want' and 'Going Left Right' are ... really representative of the band".[5] In a later interview, Herbage admitted that "Going Left Right" and third single "I Want" were both "very strong tracks" and added, "we worked so hard on '[Going Left Right]'"[5]

Retrospective reviews for the song were universally positive. Paolo Hewitt of Melody Maker said that it and "I Want" were "far superior" to "Is Vic There?"[5]], Mimi von Tussle of Sputnikmusic called it "always a crowd-pleaser" and "sublime",[6] while Leonard's Lair said that it "matched 'Is Vic There?' for swagger and military precision".[7] Dave Thompson of AllMusic said that it "stands among the finest songs of the entire post-punk early '80s".[8]

Track listing[edit]

7" single[edit]

Side A
1."Going Left Right" 
Side B
1."She's Expecting You" 

12" single[edit]

Side A
1."Going Left Right (Extended Version)" 
Side B
1."She's Expecting You" 
2."Is Vic There? (French Version)" 


Department S
  • Vaughn Toulouse – vocals
  • Mike Herbage – keyboards, guitar on "She's Expecting You"
  • Mark Taylor – guitar, keyboards on "She's Expecting You"
  • Tony Lordan – bass guitar
  • Stuart Mizon – drums
  • David Tickle – production
  • David Tickle, Steven W. Tayler – engineering


  1. ^ a b "Department S - Discography". Department S. Retrieved 9 December 2013.
  2. ^ "The Post Punk Progressive Pop Party: Department S - Going Left Right". Thep5.blogspot.com. 2008-06-19. Retrieved 2015-11-18.
  3. ^ "Department-S* - Going Left Right (Vinyl)". Discogs.com. Retrieved 2015-11-18.
  4. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 151. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Articles and Reviews - Part Three". Department S. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  6. ^ "Department S - Mr Nutley's Strange Delusionarism". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  7. ^ "Department S - Sub-Stance". Leonard's Lair. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  8. ^ "Sub-Stance - Department S". AllMusic. Retrieved 17 December 2013.