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 The Under Asst East Coast White Label Promo Man


    Like others here in my younger days I could not appreciate this musical style and Ray's Music Hall histrionics (true enough as I can't recall the song from when I owned the CD eon's ago) as I do now.
    I like the tuba and not only does it make me think of Salvation Army bands but also Rainy Day Women & Something Happened To Me Yesterday.
    I like how @Vangro mentioned why Ray's Demon bowler was a spinner and not just for the interesting terms of delivery but especially for the fact that these were the players that had a particular craft and knowhow that explicitly for legspinner's was the least understood.
    Muttiah Muralitharan had among other things a mystery ball and I recall once Ricky Ponting saying he couldn't pick Murali's deliverys.
    Winding the clock back 40 years the Australian press went into overdrive leading up to the event of a Pakistani tour principally over how our batsmen would handle the (largely unseen by our team) magician who was Abdul Qadir.
    The hot talk was that he had a "mystery ball" and would certain batsmen (eg: Hughes or Border etc) try to keep most of the strike against him and thereby protect the other batsmen?
    Ironically i recall Qadir not being a major factor in that series.
    N.b. Bishen Bedi the Indian test spinner came to a few of my teams net practice sessions in Brisbane in 1986.
  2. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    I'm a bit like Ray Davies in that regard. Anyway, that doesn't change the fact that it's a hoary old English cliche beloved of Tory politicians and the like!
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  3. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I can concur how much that hurts. When I was about twelve we had some cricket nets across the street from my house, and my mates and I would be in there all summer. One day the big kids wanted the nets and we said we were first, so they proceeded to bowl a barrage of bouncers at me until they knocked me out lol
  4. stewedandkeefed

    stewedandkeefed Came Ashore In The Dead Of The Night

    I forgot about "Cricket". I have a brother who is pretty cricket-mad. He pays to watch cricket online and has traveled to see a Test match (five days) at Headingly. The only reason I have been to Lord's and the Oval (circa 1978 for a limited-over Australia/England match where I learned what a Pommy bastard is) is because of him. He also turned me into a great documentary called Fire In Babylon about how the West Indies cricket team rose to compete at the international level in the 1970s and 1980s. Bunny Wailer appears in it. Maybe there needs to be a thread about cricket songs as I am aware Roy Harper has a song called "When A Cricketer Leaves The Crease". As far as the Kinks song is concerned, listening to it I just laughed because I just found the lyrics and Ray's vocal delivery so hilarious. However, I am disappointed there is no reference to the fielding position "silly mid off" (or something like that).
  5. James H.

    James H. Forum Resident

    Runnemede, NJ
    Does a bowler ever have rotator cuff injuries or have to have Tommy John surgery like pitchers in baseball can have arm issues?

    I watched the last video of the gentleman hitting and that bowler threw a lot of pitches.

    In criquet, can you change a bowler when he is not getting a batter out? Why don't they make a bowler change with a left handed bowler to a left handed batter?
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2021
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  6. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident

    Is it the same Miandad as this one ?
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  7. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I have looked through this a few times now, and still probably missed typos, I don't think there is anything inflammatory in here, and if there is my apologies, it is not intentional.

    Money And Corruption/ I Am Your Man

    stereo mix (5:52), recorded May-Jul 1973 at Konk Studios, Hornsey, London

    (Sung by Chorus)

    We are sick and tired
    Of being promised this and that.
    We work all day, we sweat and slave
    To keep the wealthy fat.
    They fill our heads with promises
    And bamboozle us with facts,
    Then they put on false sincerity
    Then they laugh behind our backs.

    1st Chorus
    Money and Corruption
    Are ruining the land
    Crooked politicians
    Betray the working man,
    Pocketing the profits
    And treating us like sheep,
    And we're tired of hearing promises
    That we know they'll never keep.

    Money and Corruption
    (Etc. repeat 1st Chorus above)

    Promises, promises, all we get are promises.
    Show us a man who'll understand us, guide us and lead us.

    We are sick and tired
    Of having to ask them cap in hand
    We crawl on the floor
    We beg for more,
    but still we are ignored.
    We're tired of being herded
    Like a mindless flock of sheep
    And we're tired of hearing promises
    That we know they'll never keep.

    1st Chorus
    Money and Corruption
    Are ruining the land
    Crooked politicians
    Betray the working man,
    Pocketing the profits
    And treating us like sheep,
    And we're tired of hearing promises
    We know they'll never keep.

    We've got to stand together
    Every woman, every man,
    Because money and corruption are ruining the land.
    Show us a man who'll be our Saviour and will lead us.
    Show us a man who'll understand us, guide us and lead us.
    Show us a man.
    Workers of the nation unite.
    Workers of the nation unite.

    (Mr. Black sings)

    I visualise a day when people will be free
    And we'll be living in a new society.
    No class distinction, no slums or poverty
    I have a vision of a new society.
    And every home will have a stereo and TV,
    a deep freeze, quadrasonic and a washing machine.
    So workers of the nation unite.

    I am your man
    I'll work out a five-year plan
    So vote for me brothers
    And I will save this land
    And we will nationalise the wealthy companies
    And all the directors will be answerable to me,
    There'll be no shirking of responsibilities
    So people of the nation unite.

    Union Man I'll work with you hand in hand
    For we're all brothers to our Union Man.
    I am your man,
    Oh God how I love this land,
    So join together save the Fatherland.

    I visualize a day when people will be free
    And we'll be living in a new society.
    No class distinction, no slums or poverty,
    So workers of the nation unite,
    Workers of the nation unite,
    People of the nation unite.

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

    This is essentially two songs in one, as the title suggests, and the first half addresses a common and continuing problem in all societies that I am aware of.
    There is an undeniable scenario, from my perspective that power corrupts. No matter what someone’s credentials or intentions, it seems as soon as they are in a position of power, it corrupts them, and they suddenly lose sight of all the platforms they stood on to get them into that position in the first place.

    We open with a very folk based melody and chord structure, that like a couple of songs to come over these albums, kind of makes me think of Steeleye Span, but that is likely just the styling and melodic structure.
    We have the people calling for someone to come and save them from the corruption that is in control of their world.
    This first part of the song really is essentially directed at the people in power, and by default that is going to be predominantly the politicians, who constantly make promises that they don’t keep, but at the next election everyone will blindly take up their sides platform, even though all rational people know that it will be abandoned as soon as they are elected…… It is like some kind of trajicomedy that it continues on perpetually, and the serfs (all of us) continually get bent out of shape with each other, based on the lies of these people. Divide and conquer has been the order of the day for as long as I can remember.

    This is where we start moving into the story proper. We have had the scene set, and Ray has introduced, and in some cases re-introduced us to the people who will be effected, and the place where they reside. This is the Village Green, as @Fortuleo stated five years on…. though I don’t think the time itself is relevant. The Village Green album was a dreamy setting, and a yearning for the simplicity and understanding, even if only a dream, of an earlier time. With Preservation we have the continuing journey into oblivion as we follow the leaders, who are all incompetent, greedy fools …. This is a documentary album lol

    The first half of this song is very biblical in its construct. In the bible the people of Israel were constantly calling for someone to save them from the evils of the world, and constantly men would step up to the platform and fail miserably to do the job asked. Here we have the people tired of being used and abused by the rich, who scornfully disregard them. These things will never change, as we have a world that more and more has fallen under the love of money, and the power that it brings

    Anyway, when the call is made, someone will answer…..

    It is here we are introduced to Mr Black….
    Looking more closely now, I see why I mistook Flash as transitioning into Mr Black, because I was looking for the thread in the storyline of the album, not realising that Ray was setting the scene, not yet telling the story. So here we have the introduction of this character.

    It is possible that Mr Black is speaking sincerely of his want for change, and doing good for the nation, but utopian ideas don’t work, unless you’re in utopia, and we aren’t.
    Mr Black lays out his plan to save the day, and essentially lays out a somewhat Marxist agenda to save the people and put all the power in hands of the government, not those evil businessmen….. but of course, reality shows us that the government is full of politicians, and they have generally never done anything that suggests that they are above reproach…. In fact, generally they have appeared to be as bad, if not worse than the businessmen, and most of the time, working together with them.

    It is a really interesting picture of the world encapsulated in a 5 or 6 minute song. The people call for deliverance, and someone steps up to say “I Am Your Man/Woman” and nothing could be further from the truth.
    So we are getting to the meat in the sandwich…..

    Musically we have the adrenaline filled first half, with some extremely good melodies running through it.
    I know that many seem to dislike many of the female backing vocals on these albums, but personally I like them, I think they work in the context of the story, and style.
    Here we also get some Dave in the mix, and that’s always a good thing.

    I like the double tracked vocal with the two different textures in the delivery of the vocal.
    I also like the way the horns are used here to accent between the vocal sections.

    Mick does a fabulous job of the drums, in what is a quite tricky rhythmic structure.
    The acoustic guitar/s are holding the bed of the song together with a wonderful driving feel.
    John Dalton is also putting down some excellent bass that is rolling the melodic lines well and keeping it all together.

    We have a really nice layering of instruments, and when you listen closely, we can hear Dave doing some really nice incidental guitar parts too.

    As we move into part two, John Gosling’s piano starts out, and holds the fort, and Dalton runs some nice melodic basslines along with him.
    We get some very nice, harmonized guitar lines too.

    Again, in this second half, we have some really nice subtle changes of direction in the melodic structure, and the more closely I listen, the more impressive this track is to me.

    I think Ray carries off the vocals through this double track very well, and we get a sort of sincerity of heart from the delivery.

    To me this is an excellent double track, that moves the story forward.
    Interestingly, we have this whole idea in this song of the people being discontent and at odds with the lives they have and the rich people that control them….. but funnily enough until this song, aside from lost love and more heart-oriented thoughts, everyone seemed fairly content, and when we take Johnny Thunder into account, it seems they had a pretty decent amount of freedom too…. It comes to this point and its declaration and it seems someone may have been stirring the people up

    This sort of makes the Vicar’s Cricket metaphor more poignant at this stage ….

  8. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Bowlers normally get back and shoulder injuries, I'm not sure if they are rotator cuff issues though.

    There are normally about 5 recognised bowlers in a team and the captain rotates them as he sees fit. Often a right handed bowler will like bowling to a left handed batsman, because he can angle the ball across him, and it gives more chance of getting a catch in the slips.
    A bowler can bowl 30 overs in a long innings (180 balls) ... sometimes in a very long innings, the captain will put on a somewhat non-recognised bowler to try and make a breakthrough, and give his strike bowlers a rest
  9. croquetlawns

    croquetlawns Forum Resident

    Money & Corruption - Another song that sounds like it's part of a stage musical rather than a rock album, but it's a great song nonetheless. And now that we're on side two, the story proper has finally begun!
  10. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    Money & Corruption.

    Now is probably not the time to discuss my dislike of the Preservation concept, I think Ray bit off way more than he could chew here, but I actually like this song - both parts. Music and performance that is, the lyrics are well put together but somewhat muddle-headed.
  11. ajsmith

    ajsmith Senior Member

    Interestingly, the main refrain of 'Money and Corruption' was quoted by the Hackivist group Anonymous when they attacked Brazillian websites associated with the World Cup held there in 2014:

    ‘Hacktivists’ claim attacks on Brazil World Cup sites

    According to this report (the author of which was shamefully not familiar with this deep cut on side two of one of the Kinks least known LPs: what are they teaching them in journalist school these days?):

    'One group of hackers known as “XhackerTN”, the Financial Times reports, took over a site associated with the Bank of Brazil, replacing its home page with a photo of an anti-World Cup protest.

    The group also posted a poem (sic) claiming to be the “Voice of the Brazilian people”, saying, “Money and corruption are ruining the land, crooked politicians betray the working man, pocketing the profits and treating us like sheep, and we’re tired of hearing promises that we know they’ll never keep.”

    Ray actually played 'Money and Corruption' live the following year during a talk/short set at the Southbank Centre themed around politics.. I wonder if he dug this one up in the knowledge that it had recently gained new real life political currency?

    Last edited: Dec 23, 2021
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  12. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    I don't think so. I'll argue that's the whole point of this being preceded (and set off) by Cricket.
    The Vicar warns the community to beware of “demon bowlers” and sure enough, the next thing you know, a providential guy comes in and expertly works the impoverished crowd which was just expressing its frustration and political anger. Classic. The populist politician extends his hands at the exploited people, promising them a TV, a washing machine and that he will deal firmly with the wealthy and the privileged, invoking God in passing, all in all telling “the people” exactly what they want to hear. And he tells it in a soothing voice, with one of the most beautiful melodies on the record, the bastard! That’s how deceitful he is, using Ray Davies’s melodic genius to tame the people and draw them in. I know I'd certainly be prone to falling for that trick myself.
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  13. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    I listened to Money & Corruption/I Am Your Man this morning in isolation, and I was surprised at how well it worked on its own. It's unlike anything we've heard before on this album - indeed the first section is unlike anything we've heard before from The Kinks, although it is a taster of what to expect from Act II.

    The first section has a kind of feel that I would associate with a folky kind of prog, although I'm far from being an expert in those genres. It's very entertaining, though, and is driven on with great momentum by the rhythm section. Lyrically, it's as relevant now as it ever has been over the past 50 years, hence its appropriation by certain groups recently.

    The second section has a melody and chord sequence that reminds me of something, but I can't place what it is. But it's a very attractive piece, and the ethereal female backing vocals elevate it further. We get a re-use of the "no class distinction" line from "Australia". Is "quadrasonic" a word that was ever used? (I've heard of "quadraphonic")

    We are getting more into the specifics of the Preservation plot now, and apart from a brief diversion for Ray to write another "Sitting..." song, it becomes more linear.
  14. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Nice I can see that.
    That's why I say it is possible lol
    Generally, I have found that people who seek leadership roles, are not people who should lead :)
  15. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    It's the people who are crying out for a leader and a saviour so, to a large extent, they're the ones to blame here, it's their own fault, Mr. Black is merely fulfilling a need. Does Ray wants us to blame the people here though? This would be quite a subtle message if I felt Ray had approached it with any subtlety, but he proceeds to show us through two and half albums that he's forgotten how to be subtle.
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  16. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    I really don't like the use of female backing vocals on this song and, indeed, throughout this entire project.
  17. Steve62

    Steve62 Vinyl hunter

    Money and Corruption/ I Am Your Man
    @Mark and @Fortuleo have explained the song(s) really well. Theatrical yes, but this is still a fine double-headed song in the context of this album - musically and lyrically. And Kudos to Ray for using the song to drive the story instead of resorting to “announcements”. Money and corruption is a winner for me.
  18. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    Each new day on this thread is eye opening. I’ve listened to Preservation dozens of times, and I always enjoyed it, rebelling against the received wisdom it was “the beginning of the end”, as they say, as far as Kinks kuality kontrol was koncerned. I disagreed just because I thought the songs were still mostly excellent. But it doesn’t mean I gave it the proper attention, far from it. I kind of grasped the dystopian storyline along the way but I never knew it was so cleverly done. I would typically think the concept was a bit of a stretch, with songs that didn’t really belong and a rather vague theme to stitch it all together. How wrong I was! The Cricket/Money and Corruption/I'm Your Man sequence at the beginning of side 2 is really masterful in that regard.
    Of course, the rest of the story will prove Mr Black to be the bad guy he really is, the prophesied demon, and it will be shown in plain sight in the unforgettable Shepherds of the Nation, on Act 2 which, by the way, shares the I’m Your Man melody, set to a different, more ominous, chord progression. So what’s always appeared to be disjoint to me (a song about cricket, then a folk-prog medley about politics) proves particularly consistent under closer scrutiny. There’s nothing random or vague to this writing, it’s precise, concise, subtle yet accessible. "Subtle, really ?" asks @Vangro. I'd say it is, yes, precisely because it's not a one way but a three way street : the vicar warns the people (instructing them to keep their place and their faith) but the people still ask for it (which they could be blamed for), opening the door for the bad guy to enter the picture. Today's track is the moment it all comes together, we hear the anger of the people first, and from that anger and call for providence, rises true political evil, the likes of which doesn’t only exploit people but knows how to exploit their weaknesses and their fears, their needs and their beliefs, their aspirations and their hopes.
  19. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    The people disappear from now on (along with Johnny Thunder and the Vicar et al) and it just becomes a Punch & Judy contest between Emperor Ming (Mr. Black) and Just William (Flash).
  20. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I certainly don't disagree with this at all. The people always want someone to make their lives better..... Contextually tomorrows song seems to indicate why they were calling out for a leader.

    I think there is very little subtlety in the narrative, but there is seemingly a subtext going on, that does have a bit of subtlety.
  21. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    I agree that the Cricket/Money and Corruption/I'm Your Man sequence works nicely, what doesn't work is we have no idea what the people are complaining about because we don't hear about Flash till the last two tracks - which really should have been the first two tracks on Side 2 in order for the narrative to work. However that would entail having the three rockiest, most uptempo tracks in the middle of the album. A minor quibble in the CD era!
  22. ajsmith

    ajsmith Senior Member

    It perhaps wasn’t the best idea in terms of following the story to introduce Mr Black directly before Mr Flash… If Mr Flash is the wideboy disaster capitalist riding into town to suck the place dry while the goings good on the very next song, where does the ‘money and corruption’ discontent come from in the first place? From the existing authorities and establishment that rule over the Village Green I guess, but other than (arguably) some intimations in ‘Change In The Weather’ none of the songs up to this point have actually explored what’s already corrupt in the Village Green before these two opposing demagogues staked their claim on it.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2021
  23. ajsmith

    ajsmith Senior Member

  24. stewedandkeefed

    stewedandkeefed Came Ashore In The Dead Of The Night

    "Money And Corruption" is where I really feel that we are getting a song that is part of a musical story whereas a song like "Cricket" I can appreciate as a separate entity apart from the other songs even if it is in character. "Money And Corruption" presents a large theme that deals with an ever present conflict. Musically it is not in my wheelhouse but I still enjoy hearing the way in which Ray works to put together a larger narrative. Obviously as with a lot of these types of ventures, there are structural issues with the story as others have noted but I generally do not find this to be something that bothers me. The Kinks were doing something here that was not necessarily that unique for the time (the rock opera or whatever) but it has its own little Kinks-related idiosyncrasies. I like the way the two songs segue together but I prefer "Money And Corruption" to "I Am Your Man".
  25. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    I’m still reeling from the Cricket conversation, and the idea that it is perfectly acceptable to actually try to hit the batter with the ball. All while calling it a gentleman’s game.

    Money and Corruption: great posts by everyone. Part one of this song is purely a musical number and then, when Mr. Black enters the scene with his soft, calming , smooth talking a-chicken-in-every-pot tones, it transitions back to a rock-based sound.

    I agree with suggestions that, logically, the song order should have been rearranged (for the storyline).

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