The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

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

  1. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    If so I'm going to say it's the Kinks song with the most number of chords present never minding that I haven't heard them all!
     
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  2. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    I was staying on topic.
     
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  3. Scottsol

    Scottsol Forum Resident

    Location:
    Evanston, IL
    I am not questioning the validity of your response, just the use of the obvious, and dare I say, overused play on words. The poll would simply be to find out whose attempt at humour is less satisfying in the view of the intended audience. As for myself, I can say with complete objectivity that I can’t be objective.
     
  4. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Lazy Old Sun

    I have always loved this song from left field that is to Something Else what Fancy was to Face To Face!
    An absolute LP highlight perhaps only second to that song where the sun in question is not so lazy and manages to set.
    To the narrator the sun is omnipresent if not always as visible as wished for and seemingly a source of fascination to our protagonist since he was 3 foot, 7 inches.
    However this sun is lazy and will shine when it's good and ready and not be subject to anyone's will, much like it's neighbour the big sky.
    The music is delightful in it's melodies, drone and disorientation and has plenty of psych trappings to ensnare the listener.
    Many years ago I played this song to a female friend and was hoping for an appreciative if not awed response but only derision and laughter was forthcoming and I recall she thought it childlike so I will add that as another complimentary adjective the high pile we have amassed here!
    I am still today in some wonderment as to how Ray pulled this off and now realise that it just may be entirely appropriate that that awe remains.
     
  5. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Touche sir, then i propose neither of us be permitted a vote in that poll or the next election!
     
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  6. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Love Me 'Till The Sun Shines

    Now unlike Lazy Old Sun this song did nothing for me on early listens and seemed a messy throwback in need of more lyrics and perhaps even a better production.
    However a friend's great liking of it opened my ears 15+ years ago and i warmed to it's charm and groove.
    Two things to me were especially key and that was Dave's "invested" vocal performance on a track that seemed to provide him with no little inspiration (I had no idea about his early forcefully departed girlfriend) and the grungy, grimy riffing and rhythm percolating and oscillating throughout the track.
    Yes as stated the BBC cut is even greater, the organ more than welcome and the punctuations of Michael Avory a further highlight.
    Not sure Dave's singing entirely about a one night stand but he is desperate and reduced to bargaining if only to be able to share his object of affection with others rather than not receive her at all!
    On a personal note it's very sad that Dave was still upset and angry thinking his young girlfriend suddenly didn't love him, and makes his frame of mind and bargaining position (and the assumptions that come with it) clearer to understand.
    Many thanks to the poster/s who pointed out that this track issued on 45 with Death Of A Clown could be seen as a concept single as it has increased my enjoyment still!
     
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  7. Scottsol

    Scottsol Forum Resident

    Location:
    Evanston, IL
    I am afraid either your sincerity or sanity is in question. My understanding is that in Australia you are required to enroll in the electoral system when you come of age and that it is compulsory for enrolled persons to vote in all federal elections. So you will either not follow the no voting condition or will not vote and be subject to federal incrimination.

    Either way, it is clear that it would be improper for me to enter any sort of agreement with you. The exception would be if your declining to vote was tied in with problems you were having on your party line.
     
  8. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glasgow
  9. Man at C&A

    Man at C&A Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    The LP I've had in my collection the longest is a Laurel and Hardy one. I got it when I was about six and have always loved Lazy Moon. I'll have to pick up a decent copy of this LP. Mine's scratched to hell now. I didn't know until a long time afterwards he sang it looking like that, there wasn't even VHS in those days!
    Laurel & Hardy – Another Fine Mess (1976, Vinyl)
     
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  10. FJFP

    FJFP Host for the 'Mixology' Mix Differences Podcast

    I will say that for me, Lazy Old Sun was always a bizarre oddity in the tracklisting. It sticks out a little bit for me, but it's come to sit where it does in the tracklisting perfectly. There's truly very little directly like it, and I love the comparison to Something like Smiley Smile. There's a lot to draw comparisons between this and the version of Wind Chimes linked below:



    As always, Rasa on the fade is the real highlight. That Pye echo chamber sounds like a thing of magic. Have there ever been any shots of them in the sudio with her?
     
  11. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Afternoon Tea.

    mono mix (3:26), recorded May-Jun 1967 at Pye Studios (No. 2), London

    Tea time won't be the same without my Donna
    At night I lie awake and dream of Donna
    I think about that small café
    That's where we used to meet each day
    And then we used to sit a while
    And drink our afternoon tea

    I'll take afternoon tea (afternoon tea)
    If you take it with me (afternoon tea)
    You take as long as you like
    'Cause I like you, girl

    I take sugar with tea (afternoon tea)
    You take milk if you please (afternoon tea)
    Like you talking to me
    Because you ease my mind

    Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba-ba (afternoon tea)
    Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba-ba (afternoon tea)
    Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba-ba (afternoon tea)
    Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba-ba (afternoon tea)

    Tea time still ain't the same without my Donna
    At night I lie awake and dream of Donna
    I went to our café one day
    They said that Donna walked away
    You'd think at least she might have stayed
    To drink her afternoon tea

    I'll take afternoon tea (afternoon tea)
    If you take it with me (afternoon tea)
    You take as long as you like
    'Cause I like you, girl

    I take afternoon tea (afternoon tea)
    Every day of the week (afternoon tea)
    Please come along if you like
    Because I like you, girl

    Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba-ba (afternoon tea)
    Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba-ba (afternoon tea)

    Written by: Ray Davies
    Published by: Noma Music, Inc./Hi-Count Music, Inc. BMI

    Lyrics for "Afternoon Tea" kindakinks.net


    I think this song comes into the charming category. The idea of afternoon tea seems very English, and the only thing that would make this more English would be scones ... which I think would make it a Devonshire tea.

    Lyrically we have a guy that is used to having afternoon tea with Donna, but Donna has gone.... I think the chorus has a couple of interpretations. Either Ray is reflecting on when he used to have tea with Donna, or there is someone else there that is now having tea with him, and it is a comfort to him.
    I think the vocal delivery goes a long way to selling this song, as it is very relaxed and comfortable. There is no bitterness, and there is nothing harsh about this at all. It is a gentle reflective song and feel, and I think that in context with the album, this works as a gentle afternoon tea interlude after quite a bit of intensity.
    I also like the fact that we get "I like you girl" .... there's something nice about the less demanding I like you, particularly in this scenario. I love you is so obvious and overused, and here we have the less demanding I like you.
    I tend to lean towards the second interpretation, because "I like you talking to me, because you ease my mind" and sitting having tea with a friendly lady is a soothing balm after losing his Donna.

    Musically this is really nice, again perfectly matching the lyrics. We have a somewhat quickly strummed guitar pushing us along a little, and the bass is sort of delightfully hesitant. I think it sets the feel up nicely, and the drums stay very straight with the cymbal keeping straight time and a kick accenting it all nicely.
    The second half of the verse, or pre-chorus if that's how you lean, works really well. The c#m moves to a major which changes the feel, and the melodic structure here takes us on a little journey that brings the melodic framework back around to the c#m starting the chorus.
    In the background we have some horns that are playing straight lines and really add to the feel nicely.
    The guitar rolls through a few different styles too. From the rolling rhythm of the opening, to the on the beat stabs that move through the chorus, and it also adds a really nice little off the beat slide in a couple of spots. We also end the chorus with a really nice change up on the last lines, where we get some walking phrases that roll into some nice melodic chord usage, and in the ba ba ba section some neat little lead licks. It is a really understated guitar arrangement but it has a lot of diversity and keeps the musical landscape changing up nicely.

    For me, the writing here, again, is so well put together, and the arrangement sets it off beautifully.

    To some degree I guess this could be seen as a lesser song, in light of some of the stunning stuff we have been getting on the album, but I think that it is another piece of sequencing brilliance. I think the intensity of Lazy Old Sun could have been hard to follow up, and as someone said, it could have easily been the album closer. Afternoon tea though gives us this laid back, and lighthearted track, and it almost works like a balm after the previous tracks intensity.... it almost works like a reset.
    It almost seems like the sun finally came out from behind the storm clouds, and although Donna has gone away, this lady that we like is having afternoon tea with us, and comforting us, in the lovely Waterloo afternoon.

    We also get yet another song that is quite different to anything that came before...... Is every song on here very different? How many albums do that? If there are albums that do that (and there may well be, but I didn't get much sleep and thinking is a chore at the moment) how many of them have this feeling of total cohesion?

    Oh, and again we get a lovely team backing vocal that adds to the feel and sound beautifully

     
  12. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    "Afternoon Tea"

    It's one of the second-tier tracks on this album for me, although that's not a bad thing to be. Has to be said that it is not well served by the stereo mix, which has all the vocals isolated, disembodied and mixed way up in the right channel - in the circumstances Ray's voice survives this intense scrutiny pretty well! Musically, it's a lovely languid swing, with a terrific bassline from Pete, and some nice lead guitar licks from Dave inbetween the verses. Lyrically it's maybe a bit lazy - perhaps Ray could have found something else(!) to rhyme with "Donna" ("at night I lie awake and dream upon her"? - yeah, I guess that's why I'm not a lyricist) but it's a nice inconsequential story, this time featuring a character who's in charge of her own destiny.

    BTW, is there a term for the phenomenon of dreaming while lying awake at night? - as "daydreaming" clearly won't do!

    BTW as well, another source of inspiration for Paul Weller - "afternoon tea in the lite-a-bite" from "Saturday's Kids", although that sounds a lot less genteel than Ray and Donna's afternoon tea sessions, which probably also involved buttered scones and, ironically, jam.
     
  13. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    Afternoon Tea: I will admit that Afternoon Tea did not make the initial cut onto my playlist. But I played it again yesterday, and as Mark says, it’s charming. The “and I like you, girl” is wonderful and the narrator’s grumbling that Donna could have at least had the decency to meet for afternoon tea before up and leaving...makes me laugh. (Maybe I’m not supposed to, but I do).

    In short, I put it on my playlist because why not? I like it.
     
  14. croquetlawns

    croquetlawns Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scotland
    As a big fan of afternoon tea, I've always loved this very English sounding song. It's a great deep cut and this album has yet to have a bad track.
     
  15. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    Melodically, this is a tune Paul RamCartney could’ve come up with, while whistling Long Haired Lady away. The verse has this type of serpentine melody that the Village Green LP is also admired for and even the subject matter is drenched in the same kind of dreamy nostalgic dizziness. Pete’s bass line has a Carol Kaye quality to it, Ray sings it beautifully, with a bit of a pastiche attitude, somewhere between I’m on An Island and No Return. Which usually means the song is quite close to his heart…
    I think it would’ve benefited from a severe edit between the first chorus and the return to the verse. Too many repetitions (Ba-ba-babababaa) of the call and response Getting Better-lite hook for me. But I still think this Donna lady is absolutely charming (as of now, almost every post has used the term !) and the whole tune conveys an apt sense of a platonic affair or sentimental friendship. As Mark noted, there’s no loving, but some “liking”, with tea standing in for sex. Maybe that’s why Donna won’t come in the afternoon anymore ? Maybe light romance was not enough for her ? But in a song, light romance is fine by me. Just as Ray will do one more beautiful sunny song in the seventies (Sitting in the Midday Sun), he’ll make an even stronger tea tune four years later, the supreme Have a Cup of Tea.
     
  16. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Afternoon Tea

    Very English, very genteel & very sweet!
    Funnily enough I always thought Ray was singing the name Madonna & not Donna plus I hadn't noticed there may just have been a continuation at the cafe with a new fancy?
    @mark winstanley was spot on when he called this charming as it disarms you & you're completely off guard to enjoy & bask in the melodic little end of vocal line guitar phrases, superb relaxed & understated lead vocal & a sublimely languid bass line!
    An excellent little album track, what's not to like!
     
  17. Vagabone

    Vagabone Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    Afternoon Tea

    Sheer bliss. For whole stretches this album feels like a greatest hits album - and a good one.

    In this one the verse says to the chorus, "I dare you to be even catchier than me" and the chorus says, "Challenge accepted". (But the verse wins, just about).

    In my head this forms a trilogy with "I'm On An Island" and "Polly". All obscure mid-'60s Kinks songs that are very musically light, melodically irresistable, with a bouncy rhythm. But they all have sad or wistful lyrics.
     
  18. LX200GPS

    LX200GPS Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    Afternoon Tea

    Love this song and, for once, I couldn't remember what album I first heard it on. I now realise it must have been the Golden Hour double album. Of course afternoon tea is a great English tradition but not something shared among the working class. No surprise that Ray Davies would write a song about this. Cream tea is different in the sense that it is not as posh and is mostly found in Devon and Cornwall. In Cornwall the jam is spread on the scone before the cream - Devon the reverse.

    From the Claridges website; "It is said that Anna Russell, 7th Duchess of Bedford, invented Afternoon Tea in 1840. This was to satisfy her peckishness during the long wait between lunch and dinner. Join us in continuing this ritual – with a twist of Claridge’s creativity – as our legendary Afternoon Tea returns to The Foyer & Reading Room".

    Donna has gone and now he has to drink his afternoon tea alone. He wasn't in a relationship with Donna but lies awake at night thinking of her. We, assume, therefore, he wanted to be in a relationship but for some reason that was not possible. I'm thinking there was a platonic relationship here but, when he tried to make it something else, Donna decided to stop meeting for tea in the afternoon. That's all I have ever read into that song. I think it's as simple as that.

    Not a big fan of the stereo version but there is an alternative version with a more laid back vocal, centered, on the two disc Something Else.
     
  19. Orino

    Orino Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    Deicided yesterday to have a proper listen to the album, as until now I'm just using my memory to recall the songs. Anyone else do that? I'm wary of over listening, you can even destroy some music that way - I'd like to put on "Something Else" again later this year, not feel bored of it. (Village Green, I doubt I've played through for years, as I love it too much..)

    Apart from literally every track being better than I remember.. this one was a treat. It's possibly the most obviously Kinksian. Again even the title "sounds like" a Kinks song. But apart from the "ba ba ba"s there's much melodic subtlety in here. The light touch of the opening verse melody, the more jazzy, "I think about that small cafe", and that sublime little key shift before the chorus proper kicks in. The chorus also subverts its music hall vibe with a jazzy last line, a lovely example of two Kinks trademarks sitting side by side.

    It's sort of sad and whimsical, the poor chap sat at the same cafe every day hoping in vain that Donna would re appear. Simple stuff but why not? Perhaps not the most 'out there' thing on the record, but a minor gem. :)
     
  20. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    Just listening to that mono mix - if the stereo mix was half as good as that, I wouldn't be thinking of it as "second tier".

    Anyone else think Dave sounds a little embarrassed singing the "af-ter-noon-tea" backing vocal? It's all part of the charm of it, though!
     
  21. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Personally I have to listen to the albums/songs. I haven't burned out on anything over the series of threads I've done.... though I guess to some degree it would be possible.
    I think albums don't work that way for me. Singles and radio songs do... that's why I haven't listened to the radio for a couple of decades.
     
  22. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    I do that with the average run-of-the-mill thread, but not for a album-by-album/song-by-song thread. That requires (or, put another way, offers an opportunity for) greater scrutiny and study. I’ll always listen to the album and then use the YouTube links for jogging my memory (and for the odds and ends of non-album singles/b-sides).
     
  23. renderj

    renderj Forum Resident

    Afternoon Tea is one of those hidden gems on side 2. Wistful and charming have been tossed about a bit so far, and those adjectives seem to sum it up well. The nostalgic sense of loss and yearning makes me look ahead to VGPS, and this track would have been a great fit on the next album, wouldn’t it?
     
  24. Steve62

    Steve62 Vinyl hunter

    Location:
    Murrumbateman
    Afternoon Tea
    If anyone was going to write a pop song about tea it’s Ray Davies. And as Fortuleo pointed out Ray returned a few years later for another, better cuppa. Mark sums up this song really well - it’s a charming relief after Lazy Old Sun and in a style unlike any other song on the album.

    Before this thread it would have been at least five years since I listened to all of Something Else as an album but in the last week I’ve played it through at least three times. I think I’m going to be fonder of the album than I was before - and hopefully that will be due to the fact that I’ve been absorbing the music in depth rather than confirmation bias from reading the positive comments of others. :D
     
  25. tables_turning

    tables_turning In The Groove

    Location:
    Mid Atlantic, USA
    Much of the work on Something Else, while standing firmly on its own, also foreshadows what's to come on VGPS. I think Revolver and Sgt Pepper share a similar developmental relationship -- let's push the envelope to establish a new boundary, then drive past that on the next album.
     

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