The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

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

  1. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident

    Location:
    France
    Wilson & Alroy were my introduction to a lot of music I didn't know. As concise as Starostin was talkative. I used to read both.

    In the 00's I spent many a working hour reading on these sites. Now I spend my working hours talking about the time I read these sites.
     
  2. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Do you have a link to his site?
     
  3. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glasgow
    He probably would have had he been born 25 years earlier.
     
  4. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

  5. ThereOnceWasANote

    ThereOnceWasANote Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cape May, NJ
    I forgot about them. They were really good too!
     
  6. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glasgow
    I used to be a regular poster in Georgiy Starostin’s forum ‘Music Babble’ in the early 00s, which spawned a whole subculture in itself and eventually broke away from Starostin’s control. Believe it or not it actually still exists, and still as an old school Eboard. It’s survival and endurance is really quite remarkable actually. I still try and post there for old times sake, though tbh when I discovered this place it took over as my number 1 classic rock discussion time drain.
     
  7. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    I pretty much disagreed with everything Starostin wrote - his sensibilities just seemed to be diametrically opposed to mine - but I admire his efforts nonetheless.
     
  8. Wondergirl

    Wondergirl Forum Resident

    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Massive Reductions
    Is this the 80s version of Sunny Afternoon? if so...hard pass!

    This showcases the worst of the 80s. Really dislike the keyboards. It is so uninspired and boring. (it pains me to type that)

    The start of it is pretty intriguing, but then it goes downhill from there. "sorry"

    Next...
     
  9. Wondergirl

    Wondergirl Forum Resident

    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Yes!!! This^^ and this is a big reason why I have a bias against this song. I do NOT like Van Halen at all. Not even a little bit.
     
  10. Geoff738

    Geoff738 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto
    I prefer this version of Massive Reductions to the previous one. But I still don’t like it that much. Ok, but not a repeat spinner for me.
     
  11. donstemple

    donstemple Member of the Club

    Location:
    Maplewood, NJ
    Massive Reductions

    Are we sure this isn’t an outtake or has origins from the Misfits sessions? It sorta reminds me of the synths of Permanent Waves and this title even seems like it would fit right into that track listing.

    That said, now to the song itself. The subject matter is pure Kinks, the title is very Kinksian, and the lyrics are also very Kinksian but massively reduced from Ray’s best. Probably my least favorite on this album so far.
     
  12. croquetlawns

    croquetlawns Forum Resident

    Massive Reductions is a good album track, and I think it deserved a better fate than being tucked away as a b-side.
     
  13. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Now I'm thinking of Sam Iam, so you would not listen to them in a car or at a bar etc!
     
  14. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Guilty.

    stereo mix, recorded Aug-Sep 1984 at Konk Studios, Hornsey, London

    Stand before your maker, it will make or break you
    While living for today
    I know you, you are a faker, don't try me I will take you
    While living for today

    Don't stand in the light for the truth it will blind you
    Secure in your offices of self-gratification
    Deaf to the cries of the innocent strangers you buried
    Don't look over your shoulder for the past is still burning
    Or wriggle and squirm for your soul has forgotten
    Controlling the man that through greed has brought misery to the world

    Guilty until you're proven innocent
    I'm sorry, but you've sealed your own fate
    Guilty until you're proven innocent
    Guilty because you looked/turned away

    Power manipulators, conspirators, dictators
    Drive the people underground
    But we'll rise up through the ashes,
    To stand where light can find us
    In every nation, every land

    You buy and you sell with no thought for the future
    Controlling the masses in true business like fashion
    TV, the media, lies and deception blinding us

    Written by: Dave Davies
    Published by: Dabe Music, 1984

    Here we get Dave's second song for the album, and it isn't Living On A Thin Line, but it is a good song.... and this is one of those where it is likely Dave's vocal delivery that will make or break this for most.... In this context, with this lyric, I think it works.

    This song sounds like it was made for the USA today, and I don't feel I can comment much on the lyrics... I'll just say I like the lyrics and I can totally relate to them.

    It isn't the thrust of the lyric here, but the modern trial by tv mentality of the world has made the chorus statement "guilty until your proven innocent" all too real really, and before any kind of trial or hearing has been held these days, large portions of the population are shouting for the blood of people these days...

    Here we have a solid rocker that comes out firing.
    Dave gives us a nice little chordal riff opening.

    I think the pre-chorus works really well, and it stylistically can probably be compared with a few songs really.

    The song bounces along at a good clip, and Dave gives us a solid lead break.
    We get some harmonica in here also.

    I like it, it's not going to be on a set of my top Kinks songs, but it works well on the album for me.

     
  15. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

  16. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    "Guilty"

    A second Dave song, and from the intro into the verse it sounds like this time we are going to get one straight from the bar code album. But no, not really. Again it sounds like Dave has edited himself for a Kinks album track. There's nothing really disjointed about this one, it flows nicely from the verse into a pre-chorus and then into a very catchy chorus. Yes, the vocals in the verse part find Dave reaching back up into his upper register, but the rest of the song is fine. In the pre-chorus section, Dave sounds a little like a young Paul Weller, particularly the way he spits out the lines "Secure in your offices of self-gratification" and "Controlling the masses in true business like fashion".

    The lyrics are Dave's usual railing against figures of authority, as vague as ever, but you might wish for some of that vagueness back when we get to the next Dave song up for discussion!

    Anyway, I think this is a good track, although it does nothing to help the coherence of this album.
     
  17. stewedandkeefed

    stewedandkeefed Came Ashore In The Dead Of The Night

    "Guilty" - another Dave song that also made it into the live show. I do not think I am expressing a minority opinion if I say it is no "Living On A Thin Line" but having said that, I was pleasantly surprised by the variety in the song musically. It begins with a pretty generic chug-a-chug guitar riff but then you have the harmonica in there that takes the music in a slightly different direction (retro - recalling the band's blues roots) and a classic Dave guitar segment. Lyrically? Had Dave been listening to Bob Dylan's Born Again albums? "Big-time negotiators, false healers and woman haters" ("Slow Train") goes hand in hand with "Power manipulators, conspirators, dictators" in my mind plus the sentiment of the song is pretty judgmental! So for me, it is an interesting song but my second choice for Dave song on this album.
     
  18. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    Dave, Dave, Dave… Back to screaming but not too strident or ear bleeding, even in the verse. I do think David Chase chose the right Dave track for his Sopranos episode… This is the Lola equivalent: you get Strangers (moody) and then you get Rats (angry). You get Living on a Thin Line, then you get Guilty. Unfortunately, the quality ratio is much less favorable this time around… We get the return of the bad “they” (the powers that be) against the resilient “us” (us)… I’m ok with that message, and I guess the catch phrase “guilty until proven innocent” is “clever”, but 13 years old clever (I mean regular 13 years old, not @Brian x’s daughter! By the way, hope everybody’s good now in the covid family). I feel the "guilty" judgement is passed on the powerful with Dave taking on the role of the "people" in revolt, don't you think ? Musically, I don’t like this much but the chorus is melodic and nice, especially when the ooooh’s come in the last time. I don’t know how you call the “futuristic” (but so passé…) digitalized drums that were ubiquitous in the eighties but it’s the single worst sound I know in pop, an immediate turn off for me. Thankfully, there’s just a little bit of those and it’s probably the only Kinks song that features them. Well, I certainly hope so!
     
  19. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glasgow
    Again, the chorus of this one really really reminds me of Captain Sensible fronted Damned songs from the 1980-84 period, or indeed maybe more to the point Sensible's solo career from the same era. Just something about the delivery and the melody (lee). Indeed I reckon the entire song could easier have squeezed onto The Black Album or Strawberries with ease. Early 80s pop/punk sung in an Estuary accent I guess? I can just hear the Captain vocalising the line 'I'm sorry but you've sealed your own fate' in particular.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2022
  20. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    ‘Guilty’:
    With two runs scored, bases loaded and with nary an out, The Kinks were looking to blow this one out of the water. But, alas, we’ve now had back-to-back strikeouts with the opening two tracks on Side 2 (‘Massive Reductions’ and now ‘Guilty’).

    I played this track yesterday while on my morning walk with my dog and suddenly thought, “Alvin Lee and his album/song ‘Detroit Diesel’.” The two songs aren’t all that similar but that’s what popped into my mind and I think it’s because it’s so disappointingly generic and run-of-the-mill. I had been so thrilled with Alvin Lee’s duo project with Mylon LeFevre and ‘Detroit Diesel’ was the first one I’d excitedly purchased in the decade since. And it was a let-down. By pure coincidence I just checked and see it was released in 1986…pretty close to ‘Word Of Mouth.’

    Anyway, ‘Guilty’ is of no interest to me. A letdown from ‘Living On A Thin Line’ and could be a track from pretty much anyone. And the vocal is, frankly, awful.

    Album count: 5 for 7.
     
  21. pyrrhicvictory

    pyrrhicvictory Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manhattan
    Guilty

    First off, couldn’t anyone be bothered to ask Dave for his lyric sheet, though maybe this is his lyric sheet. I know Dave’s songs often elicit more questions than answers, but this sure is taking it literally. To shrug your shoulders and simply insert a ? is pure bush league.
    As for the song itself, it could pass for late period Who, though the maelstrom at the end reminds me of the intro on the Moodie’s ‘The Voice,’ a favorite of mine. In fact, ‘The Voice’ so enthralled me as an eleven-year-old I would sneak it out of my older sister’s record collection and play that opening track over and over, while staring at that blue-tinted Thomas Webster cover, completely mystified and lost to another world. Many posts ago, I wondered, why didn’t the Stones become my band, when I bought, and thoroughly loved, both sides of two Tattoo You 45’s? And why was it not to be the Moody Blue’s, considering my obsession with ‘The Voice’ and my regard for the rest of the album, once I eventually got around to spinning it? All of this a year before settling on the Kinks. (seems my Anglophilic roots extend back further than I’d remembered) One easy answer would be that I wasn’t keen to follow in my big sister’s footsteps. But really, I think my musical wick was just not lit yet. Nor did I have any interest in girls or fashion. I was mostly sports-minded, my Mets and football Giants, and shortly later, when the Devils arrived, I got in on the ground floor. These days, no longer a Jersey kid, but a middle-aged New Yorker, it makes for a queer triumvirate.
    Usually it’s Yankees/Giants/Rangers, or Mets/Jets/Islanders. As it is commonly Beatles/Stones/Who. But not me. For maybe their only time, the Kinks had perfect timing. They swooped in just as I was ready to explore music, at twelve; if I liked something I would want to find another that I liked, not wait for it to find me as I did at eleven.
    Well, sorry for leaving the high road there, let’s get back to ‘Guilty.’ I’ve always liked it, and think it features some great guitar work. And Dave’s vocal is passionate without being over the top, more restrained than on his solo efforts. It went down particularly well live, and was played a lot for a couple more tour’s during Dave’s two-fer mini-sets. Unfortunately, Dave sidling up to the mic was often a cue for many to get up for a beer or hit the head, which I never understood. It’s not like it was a bass solo, which marked the one time I ever walked out, Metallica at the Meadowlands, 1989. Full disclosure: My good friend Paul was a Metallica fan, while I tagged along to see the opening act, Queensryche.
    It’s good to see Dave having more to do on this album, at least on the songs he plays on. He was nearly AWOL on the prior two; two successful rock albums by a big-name band with virtually no guitar solo’s. But we gotta stand and face it; Side Two, while there isn’t one song I don’t like, can’t hold a candle to Side One.
     
  22. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glasgow
    I mentioned Brian Burks yesterday as my favourite Web 1.0 reviewer in terms of his take on The Kinks, ie giving their later material a fair hearing. This song also bring his reviews to mind as within them he memorably (to me anyway) described Guilty as 'crazed raunchy almost speed-metal-ish' which I think is overselling it's sonic power quite a tad tbh! That said, I think in the main they still stand up as pretty good capsules of each album, and I definitely assimilated a lot of his opinions and takes. The link to his archived Kinks page is below. Take a trip back to the late 90s internet!

    Kinks Reviews
     
  23. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    A kind of mishmash of elements here, a bit of the Jam, a bit of the Who, a bit of heavy rock, a harmonica solo. Doesn't really work for me. I can hear Dave's all worked up about something or other but it's all a bit vague, as per usual.
     
  24. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    I’ll have to go back and read. ‘Word Of Mouth’ summation: “More than any other album, this exemplifies the Kinks' tendency to place brilliance side-by-side with crap.”
     
  25. markelis

    markelis Forum Resident

    Location:
    Miami Beach FL
    Guilty: Thank goodness, old Dave is back! After the rather sedate sounding Dave of Thin Line, the high pitched wail and mysterious lyrics are back. To me, the lyrics are indecipherable, but the song just rocks, so who cares. Dave’s got a few different riffs to work with here and they are one and all well delivered. The tight riffing and harmonica make the song sound like it could be on almost any Kinks release during the late 60s through early 70s heydays. Catchy chorus, tight solo, what’s not to like? Its no Living on a Thin Line, but then what is? (Answer: Strangers). Still, it’s a nice follow up punch.

    As a final thought, if Dave's solo albums sound just a touch more like his two songs on WoM, I suspect I would be much more intrigued. I am glad he follows his own muse on his solo joints, I just am having trouble following him there.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2022

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