The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

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

  1. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I somewhat agree with you on the two songs on side A, but I don't think replacing anything would strengthen the album immensely. I certainly wouldn't want to replace anything on side B. Perhaps it should have been a double album with some of the songs you mention? I'm sure most would disagree on which songs to replace which is why I think it's perfect as it is. One of the greatest albums ever.
  2. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I have none of the above. I occasionally sign up for a month of Hulu or Netflix, especially when it's a free trial, but I think I pretty much used all those up! I'm a Criterion fiend. The only channel I really need.
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  3. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Sitting By The Riverside

    I can't add to all the wonderful comments already to this side closer.
    Both pastoral & idyllic it disarms, distracts & takes you away but why do i find myself a little dazed lying on the riverbank with swirling carnival/nursery rhyme sounds in my head whilst wondering just "what" was in that bottle?
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  4. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Have you ever laid back in bed after a couple too many, and your head's swimming, but you're calm and relaxed and everything's sweet?

    That's how the instrumental (swirl) breaks feel to me.... like Ray is high on life, with his new found deep peace and contentment, rejuvenated each time he gazes on the flowing river that knows its course, and flows on ....

    Didn't mention it, though it has recurred several times today.... is this the "dirty old river"? flowing passed the Waterloo sunset village green?
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  5. sharedon

    sharedon Forum Zonophone

    Always heard: ... drinking wine and looking at the view.
  6. pablo fanques

    pablo fanques Somebody's Bad Handwroter In Memoriam

    Poughkeepsie, NY
    I just watched this episode last night and was going to mention it as well. That was a very nice little surprise. God save The Kinks!
  7. Scottsol

    Scottsol Forum Resident

    Evanston, IL
    Same here, and given that it made perfect sense I never felt the need to listen closely for clarification. However, after evaluating a high res transfer I must say that it's “while”, not “and”.
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  8. Safeway 2

    Safeway 2 Forum Resident

    Manzanillo Mexico.
    Sitting By The Riverside-Did anyone mention that Ray's songwriting manages to produce a catchy hook nearly every time? Odd how this song reminds one of being by a riverside. Amazing how Ray can paint an image put it to a ragtime rhythm, with a whimsical snatch of old British music hall and place it between one's ears. The overall feel is reflective, descriptive and gentle - songs as nice as the undulating charm. It is another highlight on an album full of them, a gentle album that infuses a picturesque countryside sunday picnic with doses of charm and humour. The song seems to evoke a pastoral occasion, but the merry-go-round-broke-down freakout after each verse intrudes on the dream.
  9. Safeway 2

    Safeway 2 Forum Resident

    Manzanillo Mexico.
  10. Safeway 2

    Safeway 2 Forum Resident

    Manzanillo Mexico.
    Yo La Tengo always involved in a Kinks Kover

  11. Martyj

    Martyj Who dares to wake me from my slumber? -- Mr. Flash

    Maryland, USA
    Wouldn't it have been nice if that massive deluxe box re-issue included within the pages of that handsome 52 page book of essays and interviews the lyrics to these album's songs? Is putting to rest the big question marks hanging over "drinking wine" and "Helena Delaine", etc. asking too much? Or maybe Ray has more fun knowing he's left us all guessing.
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  12. Martyj

    Martyj Who dares to wake me from my slumber? -- Mr. Flash

    Maryland, USA
    This! What a find! Isn't YouTube remarkable?
  13. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Hi Mark: apologies for my OCD here, but could I suggest removing Preservation Live and Starmaker from the reference guide for now since they’re from a later era? I’m thinking they should be probably reposted later at the era appropriate bit in the thread anyway.
  14. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    It's all good...
    I'll shift them along as we go.
    They will end up in the right spots when we get there :edthumbs:
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  15. zipp

    zipp Forum Resident

    Before the Thames reaches London it crosses a large part of England from West to East and is extremely clean.

    Here it is in a place called Lechlade.

    Look at the name of the pub!

    And is that a willow tree I see on the right?

    Maybe Ray wrote the song on this very bench (or more probably sitting outside the pub with a glass in his hand).

    When the covid's over and we can travel again, we should all meet up on a pilgrimage to this pub.

  16. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    That will keep me......satisfied!
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  17. Wondergirl

    Wondergirl Forum Resident

    Massachusetts, USA
    Sitting by the Riverside
    I was away for a day or two and took Disc One of the VGPS Deluxe Edition with me and listened to it on the way to my destination and my way home. My jaw hurts from singing along. What a special album!

    But anyway, the song of the day is what I'm here to discuss. I always assumed this was about two lovers sitting by the riverside. Just knowing something about Ray's personal life, I think he's always looked at his mate as someone who helps keep him on an even keel.
    Please keep me calm, keep me pacified.
    But even with his love by his side, there's still no relief in relaxation or slumber (Ray is a lifelong insomniac) hence the swirling, chaotic music. And of course throw in some wine, and you got yourself a heady mix.

    I really enjoy this one. Not sure if it's breaking any new ground (which is of course perfectly ok). I find it a pleasant song and totally belongs where it is on the album.
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  18. cwitt1980

    cwitt1980 Senior Member

    Carbondale, IL USA
    Riverside is probably the best song to close out Side A. It's much more wistful and adds a bit of peace after "Last of the Steam Powered Trains" and the heaviness of knowing about "Big Sky." It sort of sets up Side B where we learn more about the countryside. There is that dizzy effect (like a carousel). I wonder if it was intentional to show no matter how peaceful it all can be, there is still some darkness and weirdness lurking. Even if it's just a place or memory in your mind, you may focus on the good things and the people but then you remember some of the evilness. After all, there's witches brewing somewhere!
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  19. BostonBob

    BostonBob Paperback Writer

    I'd never listened to any of the Kinks' 60's albums until about a year ago, but when I did, I was most impressed with the "Muswell Hillbillies" album, and in particular, the title track.
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  20. renderj

    renderj Forum Resident

    Big Sky and Riverside: nothing much to add to what’s already been said, except what a great pair of tunes to close out side A!
  21. Scottsol

    Scottsol Forum Resident

    Evanston, IL
    Welcome to the forum.
    While we appreciate your participation, please note that in this thread we are discussing the Kink’s output in chronological order and will not be ready for Muswell Hillbillies until after we have finished with VGPS, then Arthur, then Lola and Percy.
  22. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Hi Bob,

    If you are interested this shows what we have done, and where we are at. We start side two of The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society today.

    If you are new to the forum, certainly, greetings and salutations.


    Reference guide

    Oct 1963 - Nov 1966


    Apr 1967 Mr Pleasant - Alt version - Beat Club - live - beat club - instr (whistling)
    This Is Where I Belong - Ray live - Ray with Francis Black

    May 1967 Mr Pleasant EP
    Mr Pleasant
    This Is Where I Belong
    Two Sisters - Ray live (with chat)
    Village Green - Instrumental - Ray

    My 1967 Waterloo Sunset - instr. - live 73 - Ray live 78 - live 94 - Ray and Damon Albarn - doco excerpt - Ray and Bowie - Ray live (Peter dedication)
    Art Nice and Gentle

    May 1967 Waterloo Sunset EP


    Jul 1967 Death Of A Clown - Dave Live - Dave live 2002

    Sept 1967 Something Else By
    David Watts - Live 84 - Dave live 97 - Ray live 2010 - Alt mono - alt version
    Death Of A Clown
    Two Sisters
    No Return
    Harry Rag - BBC - Ray 2010 - alt version
    Tin Soldier Man - Sand On My Shoes (original) - Alt backing track
    Situation Vacant - mono
    Love Me Till The Sun Shines - BBC - live 69 - Dave 97 - stereo
    Lazy Old Sun - alt version
    Afternoon Tea - German Stereo - Alt stereo - Canadian Mono
    Funny Face
    End Of The Season
    Waterloo Sunset

    Little Women backing track

    Dave And Ray interview sixties

    Echoes Of The World - The Making Of Village Green Preservation Society

    Oct 1967 Autumn Almanac - stereo - Top Of The Pops - live fan jam - Ray - breakdown

    Nov 1967 Sunny Afternoon LP

    Nov 1967 Susannah's Still Alive - stereo - video

    1967 BBC sessions - Sunny Afternoon
    Autumn Almanac
    Mr Pleasant
    Susannah's Still Alive
    David Watts
    Death Of A Clown
    Good Luck Charm

    Jan 1968 Live at Kelvin Hall
    Part 1

    Part 2

    Jan 1968 Wonderboy - video - Top Of The Pops - stereo mix
    Polly - stereo mix

    April 1968 The Kinks EP

    June 1968 Days - stereo mix - Glastonbury 2010 - live 1969 - video edit - Basil Brush - Alt stereo - Acoustic - 1991 EP version

    Aug 1968 Lincoln County - stereo mix - Dave live
    There Is No Life Without Love

    Colour Me Pop Medley

    She's Got Everything Promo film

    Nov 1968 The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society - the gold disc award
    The Village Green Preservation Society - Alt mix with studio banter - Live 73
    Do You Remember Walter - Euro Stereo - Backing Track - live 94
    Picture Book - real stereo - live 69 - live 73 - Ray 2011
    Johnny Thunder - alt mix - stereo - original stereo - Ray (+VGPS) 2008 - Ray 2010 - Crouch End Chorus
    Last Of The Steam Powered Trains - alt ending - live 69 - live 70 - Dave live
    Big Sky - alt stereo - live 69 - Crouch End Chorus
    Sitting By The Riverside
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  23. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

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  24. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Animal Farm.

    This is a magnificent song, and in recent times it has been one of, if not my favourite tracks on here. Any song that starts off "This world is big and wild and half insane" speaks directly to how I feel about things.

    stereo mix (3:00), recorded Apr 1968 at Pye Studios (No. 1), London

    This world is big and wild and half insane
    Take me where real animals are playing
    Just a dirty old shack
    Where the hound dogs bark
    That we called our home
    I want to be back there
    Among the cats and dogs
    And the pigs and the goats
    On Animal Farm
    My animal home
    On Animal Farm
    My animal home

    While I lay my head upon my pillow
    Little girl, come play beneath my window
    Though she's far from home
    She is free from harm
    And she need not fear
    She is by my side
    And the sky is wide
    So let the sun shine bright
    On Animal Farm
    My animal home
    On Animal Farm
    My animal home

    Girl, It's a hard, hard world, if it gets you down
    Dreams often fade and die in a bad, bad world
    I'll take you where real animals are playing
    And people are real people not just playing
    It's a quiet, quiet life
    By a dirty old shack
    That we called our home
    I want to be back there
    Among the cats and dogs
    And the pigs and the goats
    On Animal Farm
    My animal home
    On Animal Farm
    My animal home
    On Animal Farm
    Animal Farm

    Written by: Ray Davies
    Published by: Noma Music, Inc./Hi-Count Music, Inc. BMI
    Lyrics for "Animal Farm"

    One thing that stands out on this track to me is Ray's vocal. this may be, in my opinion one the best best vocals Ray has laid down up to this point in his career.... it is absolutely perfect.
    We get that sort of growl in just the right sections, and then the smoothness and lilting melodic tenderness in certain sections that is absolutely perfect....

    Anyway, that is something I needed to say before I forget about it, before I head down one of my rabbit trails ....

    So Ray was relaxing down by the riverside, and it seems that while he was thinking about life and contentment, he decided that being surrounded by all the beautiful animals in a relaxed farm setting was the life for him.... and I sometimes wonder if that is the life for me also.
    There is something about animals that is reassuring to me. They are honest, and never have a hidden agenda, and take things at face value, rather than looking for non-existent scenarios to worry and complain about.

    As I said earlier - This World Is Big and Wild and Half Insane - is probably one of my favourite opening lines from a song, and speaks directly to how I feel about it all really.
    Take me where real animals are playing .... Playing with my dogs is one of my favourite things to do.... they are so easily satisfied, and so pleased to share the time with you.... I don't think I have ever felt resented or judged by any of my dogs lol
    Ray just wants the simple life, a place he can call home. A comfortable place..... a place that doesn't constantly threaten and provoke.

    In the second verse we get a great picture drawn of being free from harm and fear. In this society that scrutinizes everything with a cynical eye, I suppose some folks may be perturbed about the line "Little girl, come play beneath my window" ... but in all reality this could well be sung to his daughter, or wife, and neither interpretation has any sinister inflection. Though she is far from home, would seem to speak to the idea that Ray is a city guy..... A Londoner, so either the wife or daughter would be far from what they would, up to this point, consider home.... for example, I have always been a city boy, but when I am in the country, I feel at ease and comfortable, but it isn't, or at least hasn't been up to this point in my life.

    We get this wonderful bridge, that speaks to the idea that if you let the world get you down, it is hard.... This again speaks to a truth that if you allow the machinations of the world get to you, it is a terribly difficult journey. This oppression that the world offers in abundance, can lead to shattered dreams and the fading of that spark in the hearts of passion that need to flower, and not die ..... for all our sakes.....

    This leads us into the last verse and it has a slight twist to it
    "I'll take you where real animals are playing
    And people are real people not just playing"
    We are still going where real animals are playing, but even better, the people are real, they aren't the facades or people, pretending to be something they aren't in order to further their agendas. You can take them at face value, and they will speak truth into your life, rather than get what they can out of you, and leave you to die by the roadside....

    This is somewhat like Ray describing his utopia. a comfortable place where everything and everyone is exactly what they present as. Far removed from the cynical, ugly world that merely tries to chew you up and spit you out.....

    We open with a little melodic overture that is essentially a series of really nice arpeggios (chords broken down to single notes). This leads to a couple of chord strums that just hang for a moment.....
    and then we get one of the real hooks that I love so much in this track.
    It is essentially a sort of free time vocal run up. As I say the vocal delivery is absolutely perfect, and I can't imagine it any other way. It is doubled by a twelve string guitar? ... perhaps ... it is a string instrument anyhow, and it works perfectly.
    On the last word everything kicks in perfectly, and the beat of the song kicks in to drive us along.

    The second verse sings the opening line with the beat and continues on beautifully.
    This leads us to the bridge, which drops in dynamic intensity, and adds this reflective beauty that adds to the song greatly.
    Then we get the third verse revisiting the freetime first line, and again it is a beautiful arrangement, and emphasizes the point Ray is trying to make.

    Ray said " This was just me thinking everybody else's mad and we are all animals anyway - which is really the idea of the whole album."
    Bassist Pete Quaife stated, "There was a big fight about 'Animal Farm'. I thought the bass should be playing the piano introduction as well. Both Ray and Dave threw a hissy fit and said no. So it's not there. I was a bit angry and sour about that one."

    We have the mellotron impersonating the strings and doing a wonderful job of it.

    This is a wonderful song that emotionally connects with me.... the lyrics and the music ... I simply love it.... I don't think there is one thing I would change about it.

  25. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Animal Farm alternate stereo.


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