The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by mark winstanley, Apr 4, 2021.

  1. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Florence, SC
    No details in the books on what film project but that Temple/Wilson/Welles project seems a distinct possibility actually.
  2. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    Having had a second listen to "Once A Thief" while sitting in my hotel, it sounded a bit better, but I still don't think it's as good as anything on the album, and "Cliches Of The World" was a massive upgrade.
  3. Paul Mazz

    Paul Mazz Forum Resident

    Your wife being a Scorpio has nothing to do with it, if my married friends and my experience are any indication, lol.
  4. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I concur
  5. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I agree with this. I have never heard this song before, and my life would not have been improved if I had. It does sound like it could have made the album, but it's probably best left on the sideline.
  6. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I missed the outtakes part of the equation...

    I had a quick look, and I reckon that you actually couldn't make much of a Preservation 3 album from outtakes....

    There are a couple of songs that could easily fit into a scenario, where we find Flash out of jail, walking the streets (Nobody's Fool) and work in a romance using a couple of tracks, and tear it back down with Once a thief...
    but as far as I can tell, there would need to be some pretty big lyric rewrites to try and construct a reasonable story from outtakes
  7. Zerox

    Zerox Forum Resident

    May I facetiously suggest that it's difficult enough to make a decent album out of Preservation Act II itself? :p
  8. CheshireCat

    CheshireCat Forum Resident

    Once A Thief
    My least favourite of the 'bonus tracks', and it's the one bonus where I wouldn't sub out one of the existing album songs. I feel this is weaker than anything which made the album proper. I think part of the problem for me is that having listened to it, I can't remember it. There's nothing musically memorable about it.

    It's found its rightful place as an outtake. Nothing wrong with that! I mean, where would the CD reissue business have been without an outtake or two to get you to replace your LP with a CD, then another CD with outtakes... and so on.
  9. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    All Down The Line, Zerox and DISKOJOE like this.
  10. markelis

    markelis Forum Resident

    Miami Beach FL
    I agree in some ways. this was the CD era, they had 72minutes or so to work with. I say the length of releases in the CD era is overly maligned (in some ways). on the one hand, when you buy an album, you want to love it straight through. Many bands are just not capable of writing 12+ songs for an album. on the other hand, I have seen over and over in these debates where one fan's treasure is another fan's trash. I mean, sure (IMHO), I think Appetite is the purrrfect album, 12 songs of unholy, sex, drug and rock and roll fueled hard rock, but how many albums hit that peak. More often than not, with the albums with 12+ songs, and especially the double albums, the debate then rages that the releases are bloated and should’ve been trimmed, but more often than not you also see that people can’t really agree on which tracks to trim. My opinion is put it all out there. In the era of CDs and MP3s, leave it to the fans to cull through the music, pick the treasures and dispose of the trash themselves. Look at how divisive the song Destroyer was. Many on here seem to test that song and wish it was not on the album, but just as many lauded it as one of the best tracks. So that was a long way of saying, I agree with you, put on all three tracks and call it a day!
  11. Geoff738

    Geoff738 Forum Resident

    Once a Thief. I like it ok. Maybe better than or at least equal to a couple cuts on the album. I’m puzzled where I’d heard it before though. I recognized it immediately, but never owned it. Hmmmm.

    ok, I lied. I do have this on a SOC CD that I forgot I had. Mystery solved.
  12. Smiler

    Smiler Forum Resident

    Houston TX
    "Once a Thief" made little impression on first listen but I'm liking it more today. It's very 80s generic but I would choose it over "Bernadette" or "Labour of Love." 2.5/5
  13. ThereOnceWasANote

    ThereOnceWasANote Forum Resident

    Cape May, NJ
    Catching up:

    Don't Forget To Dance

    I always liked this one. It has the Misfits melody but goes in different places. The companion piece to Come Dancing.

    The Kinks put two singles back to back in the top 40 for the first time 1965 or 1966 I believe.

    As a follow up single from a band associated with rock radio for decades, a #29 showing was really impressive.

    An odd choice to kick off an album side but maybe Ray was sequencing more for CD on SOC.

    Young Conservatives

    I discovered this one when I was going through the music library at my college radio station. I was music director at the time and had begun cataloging all the vinyl albums on computer for the first time in the radio station's history stretching back to 1979.

    We had the 12 in. of Don't Forget to Dance in our library and Young Conservatives was the B-Side.

    I played it on my show and loved everything about it from first listen. It was 1987 and what Ray was singing about in 1983 I was seeing happen in real-time here in the states. Musically, it was brash and garagey. I still like it today, almost my favorite track on SOC but there is one coming up that I like a little better.

    DISKOJOE Boredom That You Can Afford!

    Salem, MA
    Here's the latest installment from the Yesterday's Paper channel on YouTube. The reviewer for the Disc and Music Echo, Penny Valentine took a holiday in June 1967 and has her gap toothed friend from Muswell Hill who knows a bit about pop songs take her place:

  15. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Update for you:
    Jackie Stewart has been married for almost 60 years and says he's still making the down payments.
    Hint: He is not necessarily just referring to money!
  16. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident

    The "Album + outtakes" thing and the "inflated 60/70-minutes album" thing are 2 different CD-related matters, I believe. I always liked the first, provided that the outtakes are worth it, with a added gratitude for those labels or artists who included a 10s gap between the end of the album proper and the beginning of the outtakes. When I come to think of it, there is a 3rd situation, when the CD version of an album has more tracks than the LP, within the tracklisting itself. Costello's Spike comes to my mind, but there are many others of course.

    As for the bloated album question, I guess it will be back on the table when we reach Phobia!
  17. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Wow, this is fascinating: I had no idea this had happened. Makes a change from the 'Revolver' review which has been tiresomely recycled as clickbait online for the last 25 years. It's different from their Blind Date series as Ray's reviewing them regularly rather than sight unseen. Two memorable disses: On The Toys 'My Love Sonata': 'Now I know why there are so many broken homes in America' : On Billy Fury: 'I hear Billy is a very honest bloke and I've always admired him..... a little' Bit unfair saying Paul Revere and The Raiders seemed about 50 years old.. even Paul Revere himself (the only one who looked conspicuously older) was only 29 at the time! Still it says a lot about what a young mans game the switched on side of pop was in that moment that that's the impression they made. Slightly disappointed that he didn't go for the Van Dyke Parks penned Harpers Bizzare wowser 'Come To The Sunshine'.. it's not too far removed from some of his own work of the time if you took out the West Coast style vocals and production.
  18. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter


    stereo mix, US single mix (4:34), recorded probably May-Jun 1981 at Konk Studios, Hornsey, London

    Dad's stuck in the factory, machines are banging all around.
    Momma's in the kitchen, she got the radio on all the time.
    My little sister's screaming, and stamping on the ground.
    And the radio keeps pumping out the same old boring sound.

    All I hear is noise.
    Can't get away from the noise.
    Can you hear me above the noise?
    Can you, can you, can you, can you, can you, can you hear me?

    Can you hear the noise? (Noise)
    Can't get away from the noise. (Noise)
    Can you hear me above the noise? (Noise)
    Can you, can you, can you, can you, can you, can you hear me?

    Banging in my ears, in every direction.
    Listen to the roar, hear that city, poundin', poundin'.
    There oughta be a law, hey buddy, turn that radio down.
    Sometimes I get used to it and I forget that it's around.

    But all I hear is noise. (Noise)
    Can't get away from noise. (Noise)
    Can you hear me above the noise? (Noise)

    All of this confusion is ruining my day.
    Let the noise be like the sunset, and slowly fade away.
    Fading, fade.

    Girl, I want to build a better world for me and you.
    I wanna pull out all the plugs before I finally blow my fuse.
    Wish all the confusion would slowly fade away.
    I'd tell you that I love you, but you don't hear what I say.

    All you hear is noise. (Noise)
    Can't get away from noise. (Noise)
    Can you hear me above the noise? (Noise)
    Can you, can you, can you, can you, can you, can you hear me?

    Noise in the street, they're digging up the pavement.
    Noise in the air, those traffic jams are everywhere.
    Noise on noise, to cover up the noise.
    The pressure's building up because there's no way to avoid,

    All the noise. (Noise)
    Can't get away from noise. (Noise)
    Can you hear me above the noise? (Noise)

    All of this confusion is ruining my day.
    Let the noise be like the sunset, and slowly fade away.
    Fading, fading.

    Written by: Ray Davies
    Published by: Davray Music Ltd.

    Interestingly, this was the b-side to Come Dancing, and it sort of provides a fair deal of contrast to that track, but at the same time, it sort of has roots in the same kind of feeling .... going back to simpler, quieter times.

    This is a really dynamic track, that moves between a kind of lovely ballad, to a grinding rock that is appropriate, yet somewhat Ironic for the title.

    We open with the guitar somewhat reflecting the idea of a ticking clock, and Ray comes in on the vocal.

    Lyrically Ray delivers a picture of this nuclear family.
    Dad is surrounded by industrial noise that he can't really escape.
    Mum's in the kitchen and chooses to have her radio blasting.
    His sister is having a bit of a hissy fit about something.
    and he is listening to the radio pumping out its specially programmed monotony.

    This leads us to the chorus that is based in frustration ...
    The idea being that we are constantly surrounded by noise, and there is no escape from it.

    Then we move into a bridge of sorts, where essentially we are just reiterating the situation.
    This is followed by a short chorus.

    Mick slams out some really great drums here.

    Then we move into a second bridge that is completely different to the first. It works as a reflective variation ...
    This noise is causing our protagonist confusion and they want it to slowly fade away like the sunset.

    From this mellow bridge we move into what I guess would be the second verse, which is in the same style as the opening....
    This is another one of Ray's rule breaking structures, and we have several different sections arranged logically, but not typically.
    I love the tagline of this verse, I'd tell you that I love you, but you don't hear what I say.
    Great line.

    We roll into the chorus and then we get a suitably exuberant Dave lead break, and we move into the 1st bridge again ... with the great line noise on noise to cover up the noise.

    This again leads to a short chorus, and then back into the second bridge.
    We move into a ritard, and the song drifts on the breeze.

    Noise is a really interesting one.
    I know many many people that don't like silence ever, and the reasoning is that it leaves them alone in their own thoughts.... and I certainly used to be one of those people....
    There is something to be said for sitting in a quiet place where you feel comfortable though...
    A quiet night out in a moonlit field looking at the stars, is pretty therapeutic.

    I really like this song, and I think it should have been on the album to be honest.... I guess the logical song to replace with this one would be Labour Of Love, but I have to say that there is something about Labour Of Love that I really like, even if it isn't the most musically challenging track on the album, it does have a certain catchiness about it...

    Anyway, I can relate to this song. I guess it is going to get bad raps from the folks nbot too enamoured with shouty Ray, because the choruses are aptly on the shouty side of things, but on the whole I just think this is a really well written track, that for me, works perfectly.

  19. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    I wouldn't be so sure. I don't care for shouty Ray myself but in this case, I know where he's coming from… He has a point to make, so he does a noisy/shouty song about noise, and half of the work’s already done, isn’t it? The maddening assault of city noises is perfectly rendered by the lyrics. It reminds me a bit of Too Much on My Mind and perhaps also some insomniac songs on Sleepwalker, the ones on which Ray touches on mental issues, as if they were unescapable sociological realities. Ray being Ray, this is definitely linked to the title track, another alienation/confusion song. I really love the pseudo-arabic sinusoidal bridge, it’s like the psychedelic moment Ray never really indulged himself to get. Another observation: “Girl, I want to build a better world for me and you” strikes me as the one and only time Ray uses this turn of phrase other than on You Really Got Me and All Day and All of the Night. And once again, Ray being Ray, he can’t be oblivious to it. I’m afraid I don’t have any interpretation to offer, but I thought it was worthy of note. Though I don’t rate it as a top tier song, it could’ve strengthened the structure of the record, by adding a missing thematic and stylistic link between the title cut and Clichés of the World about paranoia, mental distress and, yep, confusion.
  20. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident


    As shouty 80s Kinks rockers go, they don't come much better than this. The shouting is there for a reason, and there is a proper song built round it, with many intriguing twists and turns.

    As good as it is, I don't think it would be ideal for this album, as much as it would be for Give The People or Phobia - there are some bits that really bring to mind those albums.

    It's probably 30 years since I heard this, and my memory had me believe that the response in the call-and-response chorus was delivered by a group shout of "Noise!", but it isn't, which is good!
  21. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident


    A really good song, better and more adventurous than most of the songs on the album proper according to me. It's got character and is unlike most of what Ray's been writing up to that point in time. This is the Ray I like.

    I'm quite the ballad guy, but weirdly Ray's ballads from this album on tend to leave me cold, when they don't straight repell me.
  22. stewedandkeefed

    stewedandkeefed Came Ashore In The Dead Of The Night

    "Noise" - here the shoutiness of the vocal has a purpose. As a song, it is sort of a joke. We made a song about noise and boy is it noisy. As noted by @ARL , it probably is better suited to the Give The People What They Want album than this one. A minor song certainly but offered as a bonus on the cassette version so glad to hear it now because I never knew to track it down back in the day.
  23. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    I'd proffer that a second person lyric beginning 'girl..' that called to mind those first two hits was also used in 'Superman' ('Hey girl, we've got to get out of this place') and 'Over The Edge' ('Girl, I know the world's a stage).. also 'Destroyer' ('Girl, I want you here with me') although since that's more directly quoting 'ADAASOTN' it might not count in the same way.
  24. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Florence, SC

    Ray decides to make not one, but two (!) other mixes of this B-Side track to confound and confuse. The version already posted above is the album version on the reissue CDs, the original cassette and the US 7" B-side of the Come Dancing single. This album mix has the sound effects at the end of the song only. One weird kwirk that always fascinated me about this mix is right at the beginning of the song, the bass guitar is mixed to one side on the left. It moves to center when the full band groove gets going, but it's very odd to hear a bass mixed to one side in a mix after the 60s. Anyway...

    Noise (UK 7" Single Mix)

    This is the better of the three mixes to my mind. This mix is much drier than the other two and it has no sound effects at all at the end or the beginning. The deep throated backing vocals are mostly missing here, intro bass guitar centered. This is probably the base mix of the track and Ray then adds more noise to the other two.
    B-Side of the UK Come Dancing 7" not released in the US and never on CD.

    Last edited: Jun 10, 2022
  25. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Florence, SC
    This is the second alternate mix. This one has sound effects at the beginning and the end of the track, intro bass guitar on the left again. This mix has more noise in both definitions of the word. It's longer and it has more reverb than even the album version, i.e. more noise.
    This was released on the UK 12" single of Come Dancing. Again, no US release and no CD release. Apologies for a few pops and clicks here and there...

    Noise (UK 12" Single Mix)


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