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
    The falsetto "moon" is great, but it's not what impresses me most : the shouty part at the end is all high Gs and As, sung in head voice (I'm never sure about what that means, but apparently no one is according to wikipedia; I use the phrase as Mark does, to mean "high notes sung in the regular voice, as opposed to falsetto"). Full Moon is part of those songs I learned to play when I was young and could stay whole afternoons or evenings at my parents' place singing songs to myself at the piano. Many times I shamelessly transposed the songs to fit my untrained and lower voice. I realise I transposed Full Moon in D, while it's actually in G... that's 5 full steps lower. Just to make sure I could hit the high notes in my head voice. But then I think Sleepwalker (the song) is mostly sung at this height. Maybe I should just accept the fact that Ray has a high voice anyway.

    I believe (without any authority other than patchy anecdotal proof) that many pop stars' voices reach their peak in their owners' late 20s and early 30s. McCartney around 1970 sings incredibly well (his voice is about all that makes the longer, bluesy version of Helter Skelter interesting, but I think also about Maybe I'm amazed, A Love For You, Wild Life, Tomorrow, back Seat of my Car, whatever...). I think it's the same with Ray. From Schoolboys to Misfits, his voice has a way of soaring high and free that does a lot to enhance the material.
     
  2. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Perhaps; Fool Moon, Again?
     
    DISKOJOE, Zeki and mark winstanley like this.
  3. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Full Moon

    Doubt I can add anything new to this tracks worthy discussions but for me it is likely that it does have a gravitational pull.
    That primary and ominous piano introduction sounds like foreboding nature in itself!

    Yes lyrically it is in some ways a further expansion of Sleepwalker however this time it seems more likened to the protagonists reality.
    The vocal is in terms more stark, direct and believable with none of the veneered tone of the title track as darkness (again) continues to build in an an exasperated mind.

    I relate very well as I have always been a night owl however for many years that was often accompanied by a helpless unravelling as i pondered just what kind of creature of the night it was that i would always inhabit that restlessly ran my mind of rumination to exhaustion?

    Another Avid pointed out how here Ray got everything right vocally and musically and I can't say it any better.
    Yes there is consistent (modern) production values on the album but not always a hand in glove fit between songs and their arrangements, vocal approaches or instrumentation but here everything serves the song and as a result it stands tall on their shoulders.

    Full Moon sounds like a Ray Davies composition that i could virtually imagine as a near Pye/Reprise composition with it's Klassik, Kwirky writing and its honest and heartfelt hue.
    It would have likely have a different arrangement and sparse sound but i can almost imagine it in my dreams.

    To Me Full Moon is the best song on the album as it's not only juke box music.

    P.s. I guess Ray added the La la la's at the end for throwback effect but could not Village Green outsider Johnny Thunder lose his mind at night as he contemplates what he sees as the normalcy of society and his personal thought dreams that he feels most couldn't possibly relate to as he and Ray steel themselves to emerge as one of the survivors? :D
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2022
  4. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Life Goes On.

    stereo mix (5:01), recorded 22-30 Sep, 1976 at Konk Studios, Hornsey, London

    A friend of mine just had a real bad time.
    You see, his life was shattered and he lost his mind.
    His girl ran off along with his best friend,
    And through emotional stress he brought his life to an end.
    It was such a tragedy,
    But that's the way it's got to be.
    Life goes on.

    Life goes on.
    It happens ev'ry day.
    So appreciate what you got
    Before it's taken away.
    Life will hit you
    When you're unprepared,
    So be grateful and take all
    That you can while you're there.
    Get that frown off your head,
    'Cause you're a long time dead.
    Life goes on and on and on.
    Life goes on and on and on.

    No use runnin' 'round lookin' scared,
    Life could get you when you're unaware.
    One day it's gonna come, so you better accept it.
    Life will hit you when you least expect it.
    And one day when you are gone,
    You know that life will still go on.
    But no one'll care if you've been good, bad, right or wrong.
    Life will still go on.

    My bank went broke and my well ran dry.
    It was almost enough to contemplate suicide.
    I turned on the gas, but I soon realized
    I hadn't settled my bill so they cut off my supply.
    No matter how I try, it seems I'm too young to die.
    Life goes on and on and on.
    Life goes on and on and on.

    Tornado, cyclone and hurricane
    Can batter the houses with the thunder and rain.
    Blizzards can blow; the waves hit the shore,
    But the people recover and come back for more.
    Somehow the people fight back, even the future looks black.
    Life goes on and on and on.
    Life goes on and on and on.

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

    We end the album with this moderate tempo track with a really nice flowing melody.
    Essentially the basic theme here is based around making the best of it.

    We open up with the first verse telling us the story of a guy who lost it all, and couldn't take anymore, and so he committed suicide. That is a tragic story that I had the misfortune to witness (in a sense) twice. There is nothing you can do ... I spent a couple of hours talking to the first guy, and I thought we had reached a situation where he had a better perspective, but two days later he was uncontactable, and then we got the news ..... there is nothing you can do in the long run. I felt like I had done something wrong for quite a while, and wore a burden of guilt that i had said or done the wrong thing in some way .... but at the end of the day, you can't live someone else's life for them, and no matter how hard you try, you can't stop people from doing things that negatively impact, or even take their own lives..... so "Life Goes On".....

    The second verse changes perspective, and Ray puts forward the sensible, realistic notion that life is going to be what it is going to be, and all we can do is make the best of it. Appreciate the good things and cope as best we can with the bad, because there isn't too much we can do about either except strive to move forward, and death comes to everyone at some point, so wallowing in misery isn't going to prevent that, it may even fast forward it.

    The bridge puts forward the pretty straightforward proposition that there is no point running scared, because no matter what our personal outlook, life goes on around us and involves us, continually whether we like what is happening or not..... even moreso, even when we have died for whatever reason, life continues to go on without us anyway.

    Then after a short instrumental verse we get a quiet verse.
    Here we get Ray delivering some dark humour as he tells us his bank went broke and his well ran dry, and it was enough to make him attempt suicide.....but when he went to turn on the gas, he realised that the gas had been cut off, because the bill hadn't been paid.
    He ends that by saying he guesses he is too young to die, but of course this is just Ray laughing at/with us while in a dark place.

    The last verse steps back from the close personal style lyrics and looks at the big picture. We look at the fact that the natural world can, and often does, and always has presented humans with plenty of problems to test their mettle, and the overwhelming number of people fight their way through.
    When you look at the constant assault that the world has on the human race, it is quite remarkable how resilient we tend to be as a group of people. Certainly some individuals may succumb, but generally people band together in the face of adversity and fight through, ready to face the next adversity inevitably on the horizon.

    This is another very Ray type of song, and musically it uses the premise of the song to drive it along. The music rolls along steadily, like life itself does.

    The acoustic guitar opens us up here, and it has a feel that is somewhat a hybrid of Willie and the Hand Jive and Bob Seger's You'll Accomp'ny Me. A snare roll hits and drives us into the groove. This is joined by some electric piano chord stabs working more in a rhythmic than melodic zone. Dave is there giving us some guitar licks that work in a lead and rhythm mode at the same time.

    Ray comes in with a really nice descending vocal melody.
    The band in support keeps the groove going and the bumpy ride is in the lyrics/vocal, as the music represents life steadily moving on regardless.

    A lot of Dave's guitar in this track has a feel of Southern Rock, with a little Country Rock mixed in there, and that makes sense as they are very close relatives.

    We get some organ coming into the picture and that gives us some textural diversity. Almost like as we go through life more things will be introduced into the equation.

    We get the change up in the form of a bridge, and here the music changes suitably as it joins the narrative side of the equation as it gets a little darker and the instrumentation changes its focus. The organ holds down a chordal bed and Dave gives us some really nice arpeggio work, while Mick drives us along with a nice groove and some cool fills.

    After the musical change up, we move back into the groove of life, and we get a couple or somewhat ironic handclaps, and then a really nice lead break from Dave... it is interesting that several folks have said Dave's leads sound like "faceless session musicians", because generally people get sessions musicians in because they are the best players, so Dave takes a leap as a guitarist to even loftier heights.

    We get a chorus dropped in for connection, and then we drop the intensity. It involves the piano, and I swear it sounds like a piano accordion, but it could be an organ. Anyway I think it sounds excellent and gives us a nice dynamic change up.

    We roll back into the chorus and that country rock guitar comes back in.
    We get some nice harmonised runs too.

    We close out with the acoustic guitar, bass and drums and some layered vocals with a delay sort of effect, and a slow fade leaves the whole life goes on feel lingering, as the song and the album disappears into the sunset.

    To be honest, I used to find this song nice enough, but a little dull, but like all these songs, a closer listen has given it more appeal than I had previously ascribed to it.
    Not the best closer in the Kinks catalog, but a very suitable one for this album, and for me it caps off a very solid album that did well, and also deserved to.

     
  5. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    "Life Goes On"

    Does anyone else sing "There's a reason...." when that intro starts? Never mind, this is a great song. I listened to it in isolation this morning and appreciated it perhaps more than I ever have before. It's actually quite a beautiful and poignant track with some devastating lines, and as ever Ray drives it to new levels with the changes in the middle section. So while it may have essence of Bellamy Brothers and Dr Hook in its easy-going strut, it's 100% Kinks, delivered with total sincerity, and brings the album to a satisfactory conclusion.
     
  6. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Sleepwalker.

    Sleepwalker was an album that was not one of the ones locked in the memory banks like Low Budget and One For The Road are.... and Give The People What They Want and State Of Confusion are also pretty well locked in, but I will certainly need a refresh on them....
    This album is an album that was an outsider and prior to the thread I would have said without question that I prefer Misfits, and we'll see what happens with that when we get around to it .... but at this stage Sleepwalker sits up quite a bit higher than Misfits for me, and we'll see why that is soon enough.

    I am very surprised that some folks say it all sounds the same, because I am not even really sure how it could, but that is part of the interesting thing about looking at these albums in a group, that has diverse age groups and diverse backgrounds, different joining points in the Kinks Katalog and varied tastes across the broad music field ... in fact it is quite remarkable how broad this Kinks fanbase is, and that probably also partly hints at the wild differences of opinion on various points in their career, and albums of course.....

    Personally I could listen to Bowie's Low, Fleetwood Mac's Rumours, Steely Dan's Aja, Kraftwerk's Trans Europe Express, The Clash debut, Floyd's Animals, Rush's Farewell To Kings, Bob Marley's Exodus, Supertramp's Even In The Quietest Moments, Jethro Tull's Songs From The Wood, Queen's News Of The World, Peter Gabriel's debut, Thin Lizzy's Bad Reputation, Judas Priest's Sin After Sin, Alan Parsons I Robot, Elvis Costello's My Aim Is True, Acdc's Let There Be Rock, Weather Report's Heavy Weather, Ian Dury's New Boots And Panties, Genesis Seconds Out, The Jam In The City, Stranglers No More Heroes, Muddy Waters Hard Again, Linda Ronstadt's Simple Dreams, Motorhead, 10cc Deceptive Bends, Boomtown Rats, Randy Newman's Little Criminals, or indeed The Kinks Sleepwalker and feel very satisfied that 1977 was another great years of albums that I think are great ... but I like a lot of different stuff for different reasons.

    To me this album is really quite diverse, perhaps not as much so as Preservation Act 2, but certainly as much as many previous Kinks albums.
    We have the bouncy rock opening of Life On The Road, the acerbic assault and dirty groove of Mr Big Man, the quirky and somewhat joyous Sleepwalker, the reflective balladry of Brother, the grinding rock of Juke Box Music, the mellow groove of Sleepless Night, the beauty of Stormy Sky, Full Moon's dreamy lost vibe and the classic Ray balladry of Life Goes On. Sure it is overall a bit more mellow than many Kinks albums, but it is certainly not musically dull, there is plenty going on for anyone that wants to hear it.

    I do think that the mix lets it down a little, but for me, not enough to spoil my enjoyment of the songs. Whether someone wants to see that as overproduction, or not enough attention to detail is, in the end, going to be up to them. I still feel that Ray was bringing his Brother back to the frontline, and misjudged the overall sound while concentrating on getting the guitars right up front.
    Another thing to consider as far as the mix goes is, Ray was making showtune albums for the last few albums, and the mix requirements for a rock album are somewhat different than the mix requirements for an album of showtunes ... and I can't help feeling that this would have had an impact on the way the album ended up sounding.

    Personally I don't hear "sell out", or anything close to it. Just the lyrical content alone leans away from that being particularly feasible.

    I do hear a change in style, but I personally don't see it as being that dramatic. If I had the time and inclination I could easily put together an album of past Kinks tracks that would line up similarly in style to many of these .... but they would sound different.
    Here we clearly have Ray bringing the Kinks up to date with modern sounds of the day. For me that doesn't detract, and was almost certainly essential for the band to survive at all. As I was around 9 years old when the album came out, and listening to a lot of music, though I didn't own any at that point, I hear a late seventies album that has a little something for everybody..... and some folks will hear that as patchy, and some folks will hear that as diverse.

    So as much as my thoughts are going to be vastly different to everybody else's lol, this is just another great Kinks album, and although the lyrics to Brother would be much better for me given a rewrite to give a little more clarity, I personally don't hear a dud track.

    The Songs

    Life On The Road - 4.5
    Mr Big Man - 5
    Sleepwalker - 5
    Brother - 4
    Juke Box Music - 4.5
    Sleepless Night - 4
    Stormy Sky - 5
    Full Moon - 4.5
    Life Goes On - 4
     
  7. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    lol, no I don't hear Let Your Love Flow
     
  8. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    The Albums

    5 star albums
    Arthur
    Muswell Hillbillies
    Village Green Preservation Society
    Something Else
    Lola vs Powerman
    Face To Face

    4.5 star albums
    Sleepwalker
    Kontroversy

    4 star albums
    Preservation Act 2
    Preservations Act 1
    Everybody's In Showbiz
    Soap Opera
    Kinda Kinks
    Schoolboys In Disgrace

    3.5 star albums
    Percy
    The Kinks
     
  9. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    This is another excellent song - in fact, this album starts and ends with the three best songs, and I don't mean Mr. Big Man!
     
  10. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    Firstly, allow me a brotherly message to @ajsmith about the Elevator Man issue: thanks for pointing it out to @Mark so that all of us chronology obsessives can sleep at night. I mean it! That’s very precious, though maybe not very Sleepwalker friendly… perhaps we shouldn't be granted the sleep of the just while scrutinizing this insomnia LP!

    Now on to the excellent closing song, which follows Ray's old habit (People Take Pictures of Each Other, Arthur, Got to Be Free, Muswell, Demolition, Salvation Road, Stop the Music, the reprise of Education…) of wrapping things up with an upbeat singalong. I’m a little frustrated because I was prepping myself to make my big Tom Petty comparison today, but @palisantrancho beat me to it yesterday. And he admitted not even being a big Petty fan!! How dare he! :p Anyway, the intro sounds like Ray and Dave’s last name could’ve been Doobies but then, yeah, they definitely become Ray & Dave Petties. Ray’s delivery of the "no use runnin' around" bridge in particular sounds uncannily like early Petty, down to his signature snarl on the “But no one'll care if you've been good, bad, right or wrong” line. Either Ray'd heard of Tom already, or he was just doing the same as him: imitating Roger McGuinn imitating Dylan. I don’t know. What I do know is Petty later acknowledged the Kinks influence when he admitted the Lola LP was one of his touchstones records in doing the similarly themed the Last DJ.

    I agonized the whole night about what previous Kinks moment the "It was just a tragedy / But that's the way it's got to be" musical stop just before the title hook made me think of, and I thankfully found it : it's "I'm so easy to drive, and I'm an excellent ride" from Maximum Consumption. Not sure I've got any interpretation to offer about that, though… The song has quite a smooth groove. Only Ray could think of doing such a fatalistic tuneful highway-rock “life goes on” singalong about a failed suicide attempt, probably his own… When listening to it, I picture him wearing his signature ironic grin on his face for the whole duration of the track. This is another testament to his dark sense of humor and his oblique perspective on how complicated life can be. His little whispered “yeeeeaaah” at the 1’25’’ mark just before the Petty bridge is a particular delight. And he does it again for good measure after the bridge! Then kid brother Dave takes it for a neat solo and I swear for a moment I thought I'd heard Mike Campbell. But no, it’s Dave Davies, the great forgotten guitar master (no complaints about his tone on that one, Mark!). Nice touch with the harmonium (I think that's what it is) backing the slow return to the verse melody, before the acoustic riff engine roars again and the car song rides away, disappearing far on the horizon. Last but not least, a little nod to John Dalton, whose rolling bass drives it all home in the fade out at the end. Those are his last released notes as a titular Kinks member, and they're typically classy. :targettiphat: I for one will miss him immensely.
     
  11. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glasgow
    They did this one on the OGWT too:

     
  12. ajsmith

    ajsmith Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glasgow
    The entire Old Grey Whistle Test programme that they did to promote ‘Sleepwalker’ in early 1977 can be found here. Thought it would be appropriate to post it on album wrap up day. They do 6 numbers from the album and a few oldies:

     
  13. Steve62

    Steve62 Vinyl hunter

    Location:
    Murrumbateman
    Full Moon
    This is a beautiful song where Ray goes the extra mile with his vocals. Nothing more I can add. I really like this one.
    Life Goes On
    @ARL sums up my feelings. I think Ray's lyrics here are more interesting than most on this album - they really get my attention even when I'm trying to do other things. If I were to criticise this musically it would be for the mixing or production sheen that characterises the whole album. The live OGT version has a sharper edge with Dave more heavily involved - and mixed higher - than the keys.
    Sleepwalker album
    It's like the album has been sprayed with a musical equivalent of teflon. I'd love to hear the demos or a remix. The live versions are perhaps the best we can expect. But even as is, I find Sleepwalker an enjoyable album to play without ever thinking I need to skip a track.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2022
  14. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    In terms of songwriting I think this album is an improvement on "Schoolboys in Disgrace", it seems more mature - and not just because the songs aren't all about school. The problem is with the sound and arrangements. When I first heard this album my immediate reaction was "Where's the Kinks?" Take Ray off some of the songs and they could almost be anyone but specifically stuff I don't have any interest in listening to. Ray almost pulls it of by writing some very good songs but there's not quite enough of them... plus I think "Sleepless Night" is probably the worst Kinks' song to date!
     
  15. ARL

    ARL Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    "Sleepwalker"

    When you have 24 albums by one band, there are some albums that are just stuck there in the middle - not one of the elite albums that you pull out to play regularly, and not one that you avoid after numerous failed attempts to get into it. That's where Sleepwalker is. It's solid if unspectacular, but unlike say Preservation Act II, which I think peters out to an unsatisfying conclusion, Sleepwalker ends with two strong tracks which leave me with a generally favourable impression after I've finished playing it. It's very much a 70s sounding album, and I don't have a problem with that these days.
     
  16. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Just for the record.... I have the next three songs ready to go, and tomorrow and Friday morning should be no problem, but I'm not sure how Saturday will pan out.
    I have to drive to Dallas Friday for the Nick Cave and Warren Ellis concert.... it's about a six hour drive, and I haven't decided if I'm staying the night there or heading home overnight.....
    If I decide to drive home I'll probably post Saturday's song when I get back, it could be earlier or later, I just don't know. If I sleep the night, I may try and post the song and intro on my phone when I wake up.... it's a bit hard to gauge at the moment....

    Worst case scenario would be The Poseur getting posted on my Saturday, mid morning or lunchtime. I'll just have to play it by ear.
     
  17. Martyj

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

    Location:
    Maryland, USA
    According to the The Martyj List--a ranking I keep based on 50/50 Objective Criteria/Personal Preference--"Life Goes On" falls in the precise center point of Kinks LP closers:

    Something Else — Waterloo Sunset
    Everybody’s in Showbiz — Celluloid Heroes
    Phobia — Scattered
    Schoolboy’s in Disgrace — No More Looking Back
    Give the People What They Want — Better Things
    VGPS - People Take Pictures of Each Other
    Muswell Hillbillies — Muswell Hillbillies
    Kinda Kinks — Something Better Beginning
    Arthur - Arthur
    Preservation Act 1 — Demolition
    Preservation Act 2 — Salvation Road
    Sleepwalker - Life Goes On
    Lola V. Powerman - Got To Be Free
    Kinks — Got Love If You Want It
    Soap Opera - Can’t Stop the Music
    Word of Mouth - Going Solo
    Misfits - Get Up
    Face to Face — I’ll Remember
    State of Confusion - Bernadette
    Think Visual - When You Were A Child
    Low Budget - Moving Pictures
    UK Jive - Dear Margaret
    Kink Kontroversy — You Can’t Win
     
  18. stewedandkeefed

    stewedandkeefed Came Ashore In The Dead Of The Night

    "Life Goes On" is a pretty good song. It has one of Ray's funniest moments in the verse where he goes home to end it all, turns on the gas stove and discovers he had not paid his bill and could not end it all. Listening this morning, I laughed out loud at that one. I also like the reference to apocalyptic weather ("tornado, cyclone and hurricane") we all have to persevere through in this life. Musically, I hear an Ian MacLagan style organ and tasty guitar fills.
    Sleepwalker was a record I had on cassette taped from vinyl and then I got it on CD. I look on it as a pretty average Kinks record - I like the title track a lot and some of the ballads have their inimitable charm. But looking at @mark winstanley 's list of records released around this time, I find many more records I have spent much more time with than Sleepwalker.
     
  19. Steve62

    Steve62 Vinyl hunter

    Location:
    Murrumbateman
    My advice is for you not to stress about it at all Mark. If there are any gaps I'm sure we'll fill them. With something :D. And I envy you seeing the Cave/Ellis show - I'd also drive six hours for them.
     
  20. Steve62

    Steve62 Vinyl hunter

    Location:
    Murrumbateman
    I don't know how you did that list - or even how you selected those songs - but the ranking looks quite reasonable. Amazing!
     
  21. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    Life Goes On:
    It’s fine. Nothing about it really grabs me, though.

    ‘Sleepwalker’ album ends up with two tracks on my Phase III playlist:
    Life On The Road
    Sleepwalker
     
  22. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    That's a pretty fair list. Obviously I'd probably move a couple around for my preferences, but what it shows really is how consistently strong Kinks album closers are
     
  23. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    Sleepwalker (the album) Last Thoughts:
    As we’ve methodically worked our way through the vast nooks and crannies of The Kinks discography I’ve stated at least once, and possibly twice, that I see no reason to revisit a particular album in its entirety. Well, here’s the third time I make such a declaration. There’s a few songs I like but just as many, or more, that I shudder at the thought of having to listen to again.

    The good news is that this album has prompted warm thoughts to the albums I had previously dismissed! A happy consequence of the last two weeks of listening and discussion.

    In terms of where I would place this album in The Kinks many eras? It needs a new category. Not sure what to call it but am considering: Clive’s Kinks/Accessible Kinks/Pablo Kinks…though none of these seems a perfect fit.
     
  24. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I've never had a chance to see Nick, and who knows if another chance will arrive.... I've turned the wife into a big fan too, so that makes it more feasible lol
     
  25. fspringer

    fspringer Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York City
    Life Goes On: Starts with a description of someone's life not going on! I'm trying to recall how I felt about this song as a kid, with a relatively clean slate, no idea about all the curveballs life would throw my way, how things would change over decades, people would come and go, some who I thought would go the distance then not go the distance, the uneasy acceptance of death as we age into our 50s and 60s. I had no idea what was coming my way! But I think what I took from this song was that until your dying day, you will live through adversity and will have a choice in how you handle it. I liked the philosophy of the song, as I did with so many of Ray's lyrics, and it was a good way to end the album. "Early teens" is not a point in life where one has this kind of knowledge. But I remember being good at faking that I understood this sort of hard-won wisdom.

    Sleepwalker in general was a major win for me, despite a few tracks really not having an immediate or lasting effect. As I noted earlier, this album is so interwoven into that time, 1977, and where I was in life, that it was a pleasure to move in time with something I respected artistically, to have that "real time" experience. We spend a lot of our time in life looking back on things that occurred either when we were too young to appreciate them, or before we were born. Like all that music from the 60s that were such a part of the 70s, through FM radio, and were like immediate history lessons that most of us loved immediately (like The Beatles). I never felt bitter and let down by The Kinks, the way I would with later bands that were in perfect lockstep with where I was in life (and we later parted ways when I either grew bored with the band, or the band changed or grew in ways that somehow didn't match my ideal of them). This was a great place to start that sort of relationship, although I already had a healthy appreciation of the band via Kronikles and various hits being FM radio staples. But it felt good to be with the band in a sense and move through life with them.
     

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