The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

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

  1. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    "On The Outside"

    My first time hearing this was yesterday. The first thing that came to mind is the Stevie Wonder tune. Ray borrows some of the melody, but he takes it somewhere else. Maybe they realized how close it was and decided to scrap it? The style would have fit on Sleepwalker and could have replaced one of the other light and fluffy songs. It's too early to have much of an opinion, because so far it just makes me want to put on Innervisions. It's better than a few songs that made the album, but I prefer the previous three bonus tunes, so this would probably still be left on the cutting room floor. I do love Dave's guitar break alongside the electric piano. I'll have to spend more time with it. I thought we were all done with bonus tunes so it's a welcome surprise.

    I had sort of a breakthrough last night with Low Budget. I want to say so much more, but I have to be patient! Are there also some obscure bonus songs from the next two albums?
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2022
  2. croquetlawns

    croquetlawns Forum Resident

    I'm afraid that I find On the Outside terribly bland, which is a word I don't associate with The Kinks. I like the lyric and Dave's backing vocals, but the music is just boring! When I have the Sleepwalker reissue on which finishes with the two versions of this track, it feels that it will never end.
  3. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    With Misfits, the bonus track is Father Christmas, otherwise, just single mixes.
    Low Budget is just alternate mixes.
  4. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I have only briefly listened to the next song, but I do love this "Elevator Man" by Kaleidoscope. I believe it was released in 1966 as the B side to their first single. A good band that many of you Kinks fans would probably enjoy.

  5. sharedon

    sharedon Forum Zonophone

    Boomer OK
    That opening riff in The Poseur resembles the theme music from The Saint tv show of the 60s, or more exactly the beginning of a tune by Audience called Eye to Eye!
  6. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    It's very very different to that....
    It is the first song on the thread that I would say is really different for the Kinks
  7. Martyj

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

    Maryland, USA
    Me too, although Ray somewhat garbles that line (perhaps intentionally?) so it could be heard either way. Has anyone ever heard the expression "glad in the gay?" I haven't. What does that mean? I'm pretty sure that transcription on KindaKinks is wrong, especially considering the song's emphasizes around the term out...common vernacular for a gay who is open in his lifestyle. The repeated encouragement to live life on the outside can only mean, IMO, that the line would be "glad to be gay" to circle back to earlier in the song when he sings " shouldn't feel any guilt, or have any doubts..."
  8. Zeki

    Zeki Forum Resident

    Good song! Thanks.
  9. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Florence, SC

    For Low Budget, as you say, there are a bunch of alternate mixes and remixes of album tracks, and a few alternate versions of some of these tracks. Some of these alternates were released on the Velvel CD, some were released elsewhere. I'll touch on these when we get to them.

    A few of these are significant including the B-side release of the title track itself. Longer with more verses from the album version (and the live version) and 2 different mixes between the US and UK. Why at least one of these did not get on the Velvel Low Budget CD reissue (or Picture Book box set) is baffling. If you look at the lyrics in the Velvel CD booklet, you will see these extra lyrics there but you won't hear them on the album. There's also an alternate version of note of "Moving Pictures" from an 80s UK comp called Backtrackin'.

    There are also a couple of songs of non-Low Budget tracks that have come out on other releases that are from these same sessions that should go in the Low Budget discussion.
    There's a non-LP B-side version of "Massive Reductions" that was recorded in New York during these 1978 sessions that only came out as a B-side on one of the "Better Things" UK singles in 1981. Very different from the Word Of Mouth version.
    And there's an outtake on the Picture Book box set called "Hidden Quality" also from these sessions.
  10. ThereOnceWasANote

    ThereOnceWasANote Forum Resident

    Cape May, NJ
    Also, what about Nuclear Love and those other demos on Picture Book? Or is Picture Book going to be covered later?
  11. Wondergirl

    Wondergirl Forum Resident

    Massachusetts, USA
    On the Outside

    What a beautiful song. The initial music with the organ and strumming guitar sounds a lot of like the Zombies "She's Not There". And then I hear some George Harrison sounds here and there.

    This song could fit into the 60s Kinks or early 70s - like maybe on the Lola LP. If anyone doesn't think that this sounds like the Kinks you need to get your hearing checked. :laugh:

    And of course with the weather mentions "let the sun come shining through" and "I know that the weather is fine" could have maybe fit on Sleepwalker. But you'd maybe have to throw in a rain shower at night to really make it fit.

    The lyrics are ahead of their time and very sensitively done.
    all around a really nice song.

    I listened to a minute or two of the remix and it's horrible. boooooo!

    Anyway 4 out of 4 on the outtakes.
  12. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Florence, SC
    The remaining otherwise-unreleased Picture Book outtakes/demos from the Arista era (Nuclear Love, Duke, Maybe I Love You, and Stolen Your Heart Away) all date from the 1979/1980 era so after Low Budget and before/during Give The People What They Want sessions.
  13. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Yea, we'll be covering pretty much everything.
    If there are extra tracks that aren't obvious let me know when we start an album, because if they aren't on a release of the album, I'm just not going to know.
    That way I can pencil them in... because by the time we get to Low Budget, I'll have forgotten about these ... just to be frankly honest :)
  14. zipp

    zipp Forum Resident

    I'm pretty sure he sings "be glad and be gay". Which nicely encompasses the two meanings of "gay".

    And yes - this is a nice song which is very tastefully done.
  15. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Are we making a Rodford our own backs?:hide:
  16. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Yes, in fact we can think everything is turning to gold!
  17. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    I had always assumed The Shirt was an early 90's recording though had never wondered when it was written.
  18. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    I believe Jimmy Page was a fan in real time.
    croquetlawns, Zeki, DISKOJOE and 2 others like this.
  19. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident

    I pressed "like" because I didn't want to look like a fool, but actually I don't get it... I'm sorry if I'm ruining the joke by asking for an explanation !
  20. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    DISKOJOE, mark winstanley and Ex-Fed like this.
  21. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    A rod for your own back is an expression meaning to do something that makes your task or objective more difficult than it should be.

    Edit: Ah Avid @Vangro beat me by 1 minute and no doubt provided a better explanation than I.
    DISKOJOE and mark winstanley like this.
  22. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident

    Thanks ! Yes, we have a very similar expression ("tendre les verges pour se faire battre", ie "to give away the birch you will be lashed with", using an old French word for "birch" that is more generally used to mean "male reproductive appendix" nowadays, but in the plural).
  23. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Elevator Man.

    stereo mix, recorded May-Jun 1976 at Konk Studios, Hornsey, London

    I'm the elevator man,
    I take people up and down all day,
    Some get out others stay,
    Some get off, some go all the way.
    I'm the elevator man,
    I see lots of different faces,
    I see losers going nowhere,
    I see winners going places.
    I take 'em up and I bring 'em down

    Everybody goes up and everybody comes down
    Everydody goes up and everybody comes down

    Dirty old man with wandering eyes,
    Lookin' at bums and tits and thighs.
    Macho man with rub on tan,
    He's the man with wandering hands.
    People with dandruff, spots and pimples,
    People with warts and scars and dimples,
    They push by, don't give a damn,
    I'm just the elevator man.

    I see them go up and I see 'em come down.

    Everybody goes up but everybody comes down,
    Everybody goes up but everybody comes down.

    I see the timid and the insecure,
    I see the confident and self assured,
    They all get out when they reach their floor,
    But I always know I'm gonna see them once more.

    'Cos Everybody goes up and everybody goes down,
    Everybody goes up but everybody comes down,
    Everybody goes up and everybody comes down,
    Everybody goes up.


    I'm the elevator man,
    Lots of people pass me by,
    No one thinks I give a damn,
    I'm just the elevator man,
    I hear confessions, watch expressions,
    Silent madness and depression.
    I hear rumours, conversations, little facts and revelations.
    'Cos what goes up, gotta come down

    Everybody goes up and everybody comes down,
    Everybody goes up but everybody comes down.

    Everybody goes up and everybody comes down,
    Everybody goes up and everybody comes down

    Everybody goes up and everybody comes down
    Everybody goes up

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

    I have never heard this track before.... and I can't pinpoint it exactly, but it has a sort of Earth Wind And Fire thing going on, or something like that. A sort of seventies funk type track, that is actually really pretty good, but seemingly very different for the Kinks.

    This seems very much like what @Fortuleo has been referring to as one of Ray's writing exercises ....

    I really get the impression that this is somewhat Ray having a bit of a joke with the lyrics and the way they fit the musical styling...... or at least the get up, get down lyrics of the seventies made Ray create the Elevator Man so he could use that line in a way that was literal, instead of just funky party-time dance speak.

    To some degree the Elevator Man is Ray, but cast into a somewhat regular job.
    I haven't seen an Elevator man in years, they certainly used to exist, because I remember them from my youth. These days, everyone just pushes the buttons themselves.
    But anyway....
    In the first verse Ray is using some kind of double entendre to describe the day's proceedings. People going up and down on the elevator, but we also have the little "some get off, and some go all the way"

    Everybody goes up and everybody comes down, could actually work as a recreational drug reference also.

    The second verse seems to focus on the observational nature of the elevator man, and that is what makes me think of it as a Ray characterisation.
    The Macho Man line made me instantly think of the Village People, but that was another year away.
    Essentially it is just a picture of all the different types of people the elevator man sees during the course of the day.... I did wonder if the Dirty Old Man is the elevator man, and it may well be.

    The last verse there is also reasonably interesting, because it points to the fact that most people are oblivious to the elevator man, but he sees them all the same... he has a job that doesn't involve a whole lot of action, and the people he sees all day, everyday are about all he has to focus on.... so he focuses on them quite closely, and notices all sorts of things they may not be too happy with him noticing.

    At the end of the day though I really get the impression that this song was born out of Ray hearing a lot of late seventies "get up, get down" types of lyrics, and he created the elevator man as a means to write a song of this style, using that oft quoted phrase, and I think it works quite well as a tongue in cheek parody of sorts, that also manages to be a pretty decent lyric of itself.

    Musically this is probably the first song on the thread that seems completely removed from traditional Kinks, to me at least.... It still sounds like the Kinks, because ... well... Ray, and the lyrics, but musically, this is sort of Kool and the Gang, funk Commodores .... maybe KC and the Sunshine Band.... or something along those lines. We certainly don't reach Parliament or Funkadelic levels of funk groove, but I think for a pretty traditional sixties rock band, they manage to ape the style pretty well.

    We open with this slow to moderate funk groove, with the back and forth staccato riff. The fills are perhaps a little stiff for a true funk track/band, but for the most part I think it works.
    I think the guitar and bass work really well.

    The little instrumental break that works as a link is quite interesting because it is essentially for the most part the hook riff from River Deep Mountain High, but slowed down considerably, and the tail end is changed up.

    The little chorus hook works pretty well, and just drives home the feeling to me that Ray just wanted to use that line in a song.

    The organ fills out the sound nicely when it comes into the song.
    I can't tell if there are horns here or not, but it sounds like there should be, and there is something in there that sounds like it could be, but when I turn it up, I hear and interesting guitar sound, and perhaps a synth mixed low?

    We get a nice change up near the end and some nice lead from Dave, and then we roll back into the groove, and we close out on that little, almost, River Deep Mountain High riff.

    This track is a really interesting anomaly in the catalog..... I'm not sure that there is anything else particularly like this in the catalog... perhaps on the later albums I am not familiar with, but at this stage, this song seems to be completely removed from any other Kinks tracks.....

    I like it, and I don't know if it would actually fit on any of their albums, but I would kind of like it to lol

  24. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    Yes, another genre experiment, very much 1977 sounding. The “everybody goes up but everybody goes down” chorus is a bit grating imho (maybe even more than a bit), and I'm not too crazy about the guitar sound on the solo, otherwise obviously pretty cool. Now, at the 2’25’’ mark, is it almost the Walk This Way riff or am I audio-hallucinating?
    Spot on. This is not a great song or anything but it could've been a sort of “Tramp” number in the early Poseur concept: the elevator operator is the ultimate bystander, he sees everyone coming and going, he can introduce all the characters to us listeners. In that way, he’s the perfect metaphoric alter-ego of the songwriting portraitist Ray always was. Every song character in the "Sleep-poseur" world of the 1976-1977 time-frame gets on the metaphoric elevator that is Ray Davies's writing. Both the Juke Box and On the Outside girls would be taken’ up, while Mr Big, the prince of the punks and the poseur would be brought down. I can easily see something along those lines being the idea behind this track. And more literally, if the original Poseur concept was indeed centered around a discotheque like I suggested, perhaps the elevator is also what's taking them all in the “below world” of the Artificial Light song ? They do have elevators in some nightclubs. I remember reading stuff about a famous L.A. multi-level one in the seventies called Osko’s, the one seen in the 1978 disco flick Thank God in Friday…
  25. Vangro

    Vangro Forum Resident

    Well this is quite a departure! I like this a lot more than a lot of the stuff they did release at the time, the lyrics are funny and it's not a bad attempt at a funk track from a 60s rock band!

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