The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

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

  1. Brian x

    Brian x half-animate bean

    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Agreed. And someone was right there. I wonder why the brothers rarely/never entered into a full collaboration. I understand why people keep comparing DD to George from TBWSNBM, but could he have played a somewhat more Paul-ish role in the band? Did Ray just disdain his lyrics so much that an "edit" would mean taking over the song completely? Would Dave have been able to listen if Ray said he needed to break up his songs, or connect the various bits with more melodicism?
     
  2. pyrrhicvictory

    pyrrhicvictory Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manhattan
    Dave is no match for Ray lyrically, but I'll be as bold as to say that in the late 70s-early 80s, he might have been the better composer.[/QUOTE] as @The late man posited.
    Their solo recordings from the late nineties and beyond show the tide has turned. And Dave’s few offerings on Kinks albums in the 80’s and 90’s have a more contemporary, radio-friendly sound than his older brothers.
     
  3. Jasper Dailey

    Jasper Dailey Forum Resident

    Location:
    Southeast US
    Yeah, not to keep harping on it, but Living On a Thin Line has to be in the top 5 80s Kinks songs, and Bug is the best solo Kinks album I've heard (that includes all of Ray's and most of Dave's.)
     
  4. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I would agree with this. I just counted and it most likely makes my top five. Word Of Mouth is also the only Kinks album where Dave has my favorite song on it.
     
  5. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    "Give You All My Love"

    I am hearing more of a Wings/McCartney influence. This era of Dave doesn't have much that I love or would re-visit often, but this is another song that should have made his debut solo album. I can also hear Rod Stewart singing this song in the late 70s while wearing a leopard print leotard.

    "Within Each Day"

    I prefer the previous song. This one makes me feel like I am at a wedding with the bride and groom dancing under the moonlight. Just think how many couples could have danced to this at their wedding while the guests gagged on their Salisbury steak. It's a little too precious, but I think it could have been a hit by Adam Sandler.
     
  6. ThereOnceWasANote

    ThereOnceWasANote Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cape May, NJ
    It's a great song. I also think there's a Dave track on the follow-up that is really strong as well.
     
  7. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I'm intrigued at the love for Dave's solo albums.... once passed hidden treasure it gets a bit murky for me...
    Living on a thin line is a great song indeed, but I'm yet to find an eighties Dave album that really grabs me to be honest...
    Most of Ray's songs are still top quality in my book...
    Solo, I have only really listened to the Americana albums, but they seem pretty solid to me...
     
  8. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    As of now, I can’t say I love any of the solo albums by Ray or Dave. However, I think Ray’s Other People’s Lives is the clear winner, but I haven’t spent much time with some of Dave’s albums. Overall, Ray solo has been a pretty big disappointment.
     
  9. donstemple

    donstemple Member of the Club

    Location:
    Maplewood, NJ
    Give You All My Love / Within Each Day

    First time hearing both these songs today. Not bad, probably in the upper half of the Decade songs covered so far. I like the instrumental break in Give You All My Love.

    Within Each Day lyrically seems like it could have fit on Sleepwalker? Perhaps towards the end of the night of insomia?

    Regarding Dave's songs in the late 70s here...

    ...here's the thing. These late 70s songs (and even the earlier songs on Decade) seem disjointed... pieced together... needing more edits... But he seemed to have much more coherent songs in 1967-1970. I listened to the Arthur bonus tracks last night, and my god, I still think This Man He Weeps Tonight and Mindless Child of Motherhood are just GREAT songs and have great riffs, verses, choruses..... Those songs still pop in and out of my all time top 10 Kinks songs at any given moment. And then there's Lincoln County, Creeping Jean, Susannah's Still Alive.... and that's not even mentioning (until now) Strangers and Rats. So what happened? Did Ray provide un-credited edits and collaboration on some of these songs? We know Ray helped with Death of a Clown... (the la la la's).... and did Ray continue to poke that bear by making that Dave's middle name when announcing him on stage? Did Dave resent that? Did Dave just lose the focus he had in the early 20s?
     
  10. markelis

    markelis Forum Resident

    Location:
    Miami Beach FL
    I have a household full of family and friend at the moment so I have fallen a bit behind. My thoughts on Misfits as an album mirror my feelings on Sleepwalker. Both were interesting in that I had mentally had a perception that I loved both albums that stretch’s back over decades. That said, I also had not played them through as an album in decades either.

    When I went to revisit them in preparation for the thread, I realized that I knew and loved about half of each album and was effectively completely unfamiliar with the rest of the songs on each of those albums. Just as with Sleepwalker, I walked away liking most of the songs that I had previously overlooked. In both cases my original thoughts remain true, I really had picked the best songs from each of these albums, but I’m happy to have gone back and re-discovered the balance of the songs.

    Many on here have stated that they liked Misfits, while still acknowledging that it has weaknesses. I have seen several references where people said “at least it’s better than Sleepwalker“. For me, while very different albums, I love them both. I don’t see Misfits as a step up or a step down from Sleepwalker, but then I suppose I am in the minority as I don’t see either of these albums as a step up or step down from the RCA period which came before. I already know, going into Low Budget and Give the People… that I think the high-quality continues through the next two albums as well. Since I went into the RCA era assuming I was going to hate it, and ended up loving each of those albums as well, it’s become pretty clear to me that I just like the kinks, regardless of the style they choose from album to album.
     
  11. Brian Doherty

    Brian Doherty Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles CA
    re checking our impressions on MISFITS and SLEEPWALKER....I definitely had always "known" I loved MISFITS and was bored/disappointed with SLEEPWALKER.

    This MAY have been an artifact of former entering my possession early in my fandom and collecting, still a high school teen, when every record got way more attention and seemed fresher. I think for whatever reason SLEEP was like one of the last handful of Kinks lps I owned, a few years into my fandom, possibly not til college. That MAY be why it hit me as duller.

    Tho on relistening for this thread I still believe the lyrical concepts and content of MISFITS is way more colorful and interesting and vivid and unique, and the playing a LITTLE bit more of the kind of clumpy downtoearthness I prefer from the Kinks, and still agree MISFITS is way better, though my sonic and compositional distinctions may be less vivid than I always "knew" them to be. Still quite sure Ray is writing about more interesting things in more interesting way by MISFITS tho.
     
  12. Brian Kelly

    Brian Kelly 1964-73 rock's best decade

    Give You All My Love and Within Each Day are good examples to use to show that Dave simply didn't have the depth of great songs that Ray had. These are OK, but neither would be good enough to make it onto any Kinks albums and if they did, they would be among the weaker tracks.
     
  13. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    Yes, bug is an excellent album!
    Far exceeded expectations.
     
  14. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    Islands

    Kinda' hard to take.... until it hits its groove.

    Like Mark, I got som Macca vibe, but I also got some Paul Simon vibe as well. I almost left the song humming Kodachrome.
     
  15. ThereOnceWasANote

    ThereOnceWasANote Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cape May, NJ
    I jumped ahead a bit in the program. Two thoughts: I was wrong about Misfits being the end of short quirky Kink songs and after watching some vintage Kinks MTV-era videos I believe that Ray likes to bring back old song characters and create new storylines for them, perhaps even creating new identities for the characters.
     
  16. The late man

    The late man Forum Resident

    Location:
    France
    Paul Simon is a good comparison. Dave's songs from that period are somewhere between Simon's great achievements and his later, post 1990 output, when his songs tend to meander around without really gelling into a definite tune.
     
  17. Dark_Matter

    Dark_Matter Forum Resident

    Location:
    94116
    A Rock ‘n’ Roll Fantasy

    Sorry, I was late to see the discussion of this amazing song. I'd been watching this thread for a while and waiting for it to make its way to Misfits, which it did at last. I really enjoyed the observations from musicians about the structure of this song, along with the emotion it creates. I was an awkward 18-year-old kid when this song came out, and it struck me deeply on several levels: weaving in the death of Elvis that shattered the music world and broke the hearts of many Americans; the story of Dan the fan that resonated with me as a socially awkward kid who turned to music to ease the pain of adolescence; and the trials and tribulations of being in a rock band despite constant thoughts of calling it quits. It's my favorite song from the Kinks and one of my all-time favorites from any band because of its message, the way it builds, and how it moves me every time I hear it, even 44 years after it was released.
     
  18. Bullis

    Bullis Forum Resident

    Location:
    Niagara County
    Disagree. Ray solos are some of most played
     
  19. ThereOnceWasANote

    ThereOnceWasANote Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cape May, NJ
    Your post gives me a deeper appreciation of a song I liked but never loved. Thank you for that.
     
  20. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I wish I could say the same. We will see how they go with closer inspection, but I find most of his solo work to be bland and on the boring side. I guess I want the Ray who takes chances and is more eclectic. There are some good songs in there, but the arrangements and production leave a lot to be desired. I think Other People's Lives and Workingman's Cafe are decent. I have never listened to Return To Waterloo and I'm not a fan of most of the Americana albums. This thread makes you listen closer and form a better opinion. I'm looking forward to what people have to say about them.
     
  21. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    Location:
    New Mexico
    As a general rule, I play solo Dave more than solo Ray, especially Chosen People and Bug.

    But I did take quite a liking to Working Man's Cafe.
     
  22. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Location:
    Florence, SC
    Return To Waterloo is very much a companion piece to Word Of Mouth with a few of the same tracks (albeit some different mixes) and a few very good unique tracks. Recommended if you like early ‘80s Kinks. It’s billed as a Ray solo “soundtrack” album, but to my mind it’s a Kinks album (or long EP - it’s only about 30 minutes long) even though Dave is not listed as a participant. But I think he is there based on the guitar work on these tracks. Dave was in a weird place mentally during this time and I think he requested to not be listed on this release.
    Other People’s Lives and Workingman’s Cafe are mostly pretty good in my view. Saw Ray in Atlanta on the Lives tour.
    The Americana albums are huge disappointments to me, but we’re getting ahead of the thread here so we’ll get back to this later in the year.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2022
  23. croquetlawns

    croquetlawns Forum Resident

    It might be 2023 before we got to those!
     
  24. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    I'll have to give Bug a try
     
  25. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Same Old Blues.

    stereo mix (4:10), recorded 1978 at Konk Studios, North London

    I messed with you, you were a charm.
    I sensed that we had met in some other time.
    I owed you Love, you owed me too.
    Our debt is paid but you are so far away.

    So pretty, so nice, it's alright but...
    Every night at the same time, Same Old Blues keeps haunting me
    It doesn't matter how much I try, Same Old Blues keeps calling me.
    To you, to you, to you

    It was so strange the way that we met.
    In that dark dismal place, where no-one knew who we were.
    I looked at you, the air took a chill. Time flew away
    And we forgot why we came.

    You know I, had to go. So far but...
    Every night at the same time, Same Old Blues keep haunting me
    It doesn't matter how much I try, Same Old Blues keeps calling me
    To you, to you, to you...

    Every night at the same time, Same Old Blues keeps haunting me
    It doesn't matter how much I try
    Same Old Blues keeps calling me
    To you, to you, to you...
    To you oooh- ooh

    Written by: Dave Davies
    Published by: Dave Davies

    Dave - Guitar and vocals
    Ron Lawrence - bass
    Nick Trevisik - Drums

    Lyrically we have another "trials of relationships" track from Dave, and it seems like this could be another Sue song, in a way, or indeed it could be a completely different disappointment in/with love.
    This for me, is another Dave lyric that does what it needs to without really being particularly direct. We have another vague Dave lyric that says whatever he felt like saying that only gives clues as to what it may actually directly be about.
    Dave has the same old blues over a girl who he has or had a relationship with.

    Musically though, this works really well for me. The opening slow dirty groove, and the chord pattern really work well for me. It is one of those rifflike chord progressions that for me is engaging and in the opening section and verse we get the guitar and bass working really well together, with the drums just holding down a slow steady groove.

    After the first verse the feel changes slightly with the bass hitting a quick walking, descending line, while the guitar just clucks on a chord. the drums remain the same, but we get an effective change up to the ride cymbal.
    This section is essentially the chorus, and even though the feel changes somewhat, it manages to stay in an engaging groove.
    Then after the slow strut of the opening, we move into a nice progression that adds a nice melodic twist.
    In this section the bass does a nice wide walking melodic line that works really well.
    There is an extra guitar that comes in with some nice little accents that sweeten up the passage.
    We end it with sort of fake fade, and a well placed thoughtful fill brings us back to the original groove.

    This gives us a repeat of the verse and chorus, and essentially that is the song.

    For me one of the highlights here is Dave's lead track, that isn't particularly dominant, but it adds some nice little licks that work well in the context of the song.... At times some of these little fills sound somewhat Knopfler-esque in their phrasing.

    This again is somewhat demo-ish, but the straightforward arrangement works for me here, and I don't feel like it is missing anything.
    Dave's vocal works for me here too. It seems urgent and impassioned enough, and doesn't enter that awkward zone where you want him to hold back a little.

    For me a good song, that works predominantly because I really like the feel of it, and the chorus change up works well for me here too.

     

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