The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

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

  1. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I get the impression that sound/production has a lot to do with it.
    There are also, quite a few quite mellow tunes on the album, and I think that to some degree, that draws the softened version of the Kinks perspective.... but most of the "classic" albums have that, so I have to go with sound/production.

    I think a cursory listen may suggest somewhat simplified songs, but I think a deeper listen takes that argument out.

    I think really these questions will only be answered, perhaps, after we get through the bulk of the songs, because even the opener has already revealed folks missed a fair bit.
     
  2. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I think it’s all of these things and also the songs are not as good as before. It’s also just a personal preference. There are a few songs, like the one we discussed today, that you can’t detect much of a change. However, the entire record doesn’t follow suit.

    Tomorrow’s song has a guitar style and sound that I feel is much different than anything that came before it. Some people, like myself, don’t care for that style.

    It’s a more straightforward, soft, and commercial rock record. Not that there are not good songs on it, but it just feels different from previous albums. The instruments, the arrangements, the production, and sometimes the writing.

    It lacks a little bit of The Kinks humor and charm, but maybe I will feel differently after we go through it? I already like todays song more after hearing the acoustic version and from playing the album many times over the last week. It’s always been my favorite song on the album though.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2022
  3. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    I assume we all know the old adage about talent borrows while genius steals? Well, it strikes me Ray was doing a lot of stealing in this period! I keep hearing bits of other people's songs all over these albums and, it's not something that annoys me per se, but it does prevent me from appreciating some of these songs ... plus I feel like I'm spending a lot of time listening out for next bit that Ray's borrowed (let's use that instead).
     
  4. Paul Mazz

    Paul Mazz Forum Resident

    I don't have anything original to add. Just wanted to chime in to say I like this opener. I like the dynamics of the song, the opening verse melody more than the chorus, and the call back to themes used in the past by Ray. Others have mentioned the song Big Black Smoke, songs from Everybody's in Showbiz, and some of the themes from Lola. I guess it's not really much of a departure from what came before. Not sure it's in my top echelon of Kinks songs, but its much better than I remembered.
     
  5. TeddyB

    TeddyB Senior Member

    Location:
    Hollywoodland

    I was at this Winterland show (also saw the Kinks there in December of 1974, as I attended U.C. Berkeley in those years). The ‘74 show was more fun but this was great as well.

    I also love the song Life on the Road. It’s my favorite on this album. It’s always been an ear worm for me, both the intro and the “rock” part, all very good natured and Kinks-loveable. I did think that the line about “are you gay, etc.” was a bit too faux naïf but I guess that’s the character Ray is assaying, if that’s an excuse.

    Also, I’ve always heard “to catch a kiss from a lady” and not “kissable lady”.
     
  6. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I'm not really sure what this means...

    I don't get the impression Ray was insulting Gay people, if that's the gist.
     
  7. Wondergirl

    Wondergirl Forum Resident

    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Huh. You could be right. But I kinda like "kissable lady"... sounds more Ray. LOL
     
  8. TeddyB

    TeddyB Senior Member

    Location:
    Hollywoodland
    Absolutely not! I was just citing Ray’s character not knowing what “gay” meant. Of course, now that you mention it, when the actual Ray went on the road in the sixties, it wasn’t a term in as common use as it is now, or in 1977. Considering that, the “punks” in Praed Street likely weren’t the spiky haired ones.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2022
  9. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Aaahhh that makes sense.
    Cheers
     
  10. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    I'm sorry you have lost me on the "truncheon" part as I don't follow but it sounds not unlike a type of Kink!
     
  11. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    I was in the car again today listening further in and may well find myself side by side with you. We’ll see…but it’s pretty obvious to my ears that this is a huge shift from the discography to date. Not today’s gem. I have nothing but praise for the first half and think it’s a good song. As I said, it’s on my playlist. But, as we all know, one or even two songs don’t make the album.
     
  12. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Yeah, Kink(s)!
     
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  13. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    My dear @Wondergirl i will put it on the record that I have gone to the Hellfire club exactly twice in my lifetime, an interesting eye opener but not part of my lifestyle/habits.
    Interesting to observe people's reactions for sure like Ray does and Mr Davies spoke himself in X-ray of discovering folk looking at ladies with torches in a club.
    Ok I will go away now!:hide:
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2022
  14. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I also listened again in the car tonight, so it's not a lack of giving it a chance! I'm ready to share all my thoughts and move on already! I guess I have to be patient. I will listen to each song again on the morning we discuss them, but then I can file it away. I do really like the song from today. I will feel bad criticizing the band after all they have given us so far, so I'm trying to find some positive things to say.
     
  15. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Both had their own Motorway that perhaps each thought was "The worst in the world?"
     
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  16. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Ok I have passively watched Toto & The Kinks compared in some way but I cannot sit idily by and accept that Foreigner are a modern sounding Free!
     
  17. Geoff738

    Geoff738 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto
    Hmmm. I might have problems with Sleepwalker. I don’t love today’s track, but can’t put my finger on why. It has its moments, but just doesn’t make it to top tier Kinks for me. I suspect that’s gonna be the case as we go through the songs but I’ll try and keep an open mind.
     
  18. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident

    Location:
    France
    Wow, I finally listened to this, that's interesting. At first I thought it was from a much later solo tour, with the lower-key singing, and the fact that he sings only part of the song - he goes straight to "Euston" right after the soft intro, and there's no reprise (neither the slow part nor the Education-like snippet). Also, the third chord on the verse doesn't sound the same as on the studio version. But it's actually from 1977 ! Then he goes on talking about Randy Newman, that he says he met shorlty before his first 1967 album, if I understood correctly ? (But maybe I didn't). 2 of my favourite songwriters, really. I have tickets for a Randy Newman concert in Paris that has been postponed twice already, I pray that this time it will happen.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2022
  19. Smiler

    Smiler Forum Resident

    Location:
    Houston TX
    Thank you for posting this! I too like this rendition, perhaps more than the album version. But more noteworthy for me is that this acoustic performance is making me revisit and appreciate "Here Come the People in Grey." Perhaps there is hope for me yet vis-à-vis Muswell Hillbillies!
     
  20. markelis

    markelis Forum Resident

    Location:
    Miami Beach FL
    Yeah, I know. I just thought I’d try slipping it in there to see if I could get away with it while I thought no one was looking!
     
  21. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    There's no dropping-off point for me at all. There are some albums (or songs) I like less than others, sure, but never enough to make me lose interest or stop listening. Sleepwalker is a good "steady" record, deliberately less flamboyant and playful than the ones before because they decided to come back to a tighter five piece format and to self-contained individual songs. For sure, it was a transitional period (even transformative) for the Kinks as a group, for Ray as a writer and for Dave as a guitar player. Which explains why some of us will like it more than what went on before and some of us less. Dalton leaves before the sessions end, Gosling before the next sessions start. Transition, change, new sound(s). I like my artists to evolve and move on, it doesn't mean I will applaud each step they take like it's my child learning how to walk. But more importantly, this debate is biased if we start thinking (or implying) that a record we like less is the result of them turning cynical and starting aiming for the charts (or the US radio). For two reasons : 1/ artistically cynical is the one thing Ray & Dave have never been. 2/ there's nothing wrong (and a lot of good) with the Kinks aiming for the charts (or the US radio), as proven by the Lola single story, not so long before Sleepwalker. So please aim for the charts, Ray. By all means, do it !
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2022
  22. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    The thread certainly isn't dropping off - the discussion on "Life On The Road" has stretched to five pages!
     
  23. croquetlawns

    croquetlawns Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scotland
    Yep, I was a bit surprised!
     
  24. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    No one will be at all surprised to learn that a very distinguished client of Saville Row's suit artisans was a certain Mr Charles Robert Watts!
     
  25. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Oh i don't know Mark, i reckon you would be bang up for attending a Kink Konvention!
     
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