The Kinks - Album by Album (song by song)

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

  1. Wondergirl

    Wondergirl Forum Resident

    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    BTW, was it Lobel?

    fun fact: I worked for WBZ for 3 years in the 90s
     
  2. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Location:
    Florence, SC
    One For The Road

    I like this album. I don’t love this album. I did not experience it in real time nor was it one of the first Kinks albums I ever owned or heard. That would be Word Of Mouth in my case. In fact I had just about everything except One For The Road at the end of the 80s when I finally bought a copy. No friends had this or any other Kinks albums other than one friends who I later found out had a cassette of State Of Confusion he forgot he had for years.
    I far prefer studio albums and versions to live albums except for a couple of instances. I’m not sure why it took me that long to pick it up other than it being a live double and I wanted all the studio stuff first.
    I want to keep an open mind going into this and reading other comments for some other perspective. There are some tempo problems here with the drums and some of the arrangements are not to my liking (those Cassio keys in Celluloid Heroes being one of the prime culprits) but I’m going to approach it fresh after not listening to this for a couple of years.
    In reading some of the comments thus far, I do see a familiar pattern and this is true for a lot of folks and any album or band, not just One For The Road or the Kinks.
    For some folks and what turns out to be their favorite artists over the years, the first albums acquired seem to be held in higher regard than if you came to it later regardless of where it ends up falling on the quality meter in said band’s catalog. Not always, but I’ve seen this enough over the years to recognize this. This is true for me for some albums/artists too. The aforementioned Word Of Mouth will always hold a higher slot in the canon despite it being a lesser album in the catalog by most consensus.

    It’s fitting we’re starting on this today as I’m back home today after being On The Road all week out west. I know what time the clock is saying it is, but I’m not sure what time my brain thinks it is. East to West, OK, no problem. West to East? Ugh!
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2022
  3. pyrrhicvictory

    pyrrhicvictory Forum Resident

    Location:
    Manhattan
     
  4. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Lol it's fun isn't it
    In 2009 I flew from Perth West Oz to Phoenix AZ, drove to Birmingham AL, drove back to Phoenix, then up to Flagstaff, back to Phoenix, flew to Erie PA, flew to Birmingham Al, drove to Wise VA, back to Birmingham, flew back to Phoenix... spent a week in each spot doing youth camps, barely slept a wink.
    Absolutely the best time in my life, but that last month spent in Phoenix I was a stunned mullet lol
     
  5. Wondergirl

    Wondergirl Forum Resident

    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    LOL. Was hoping someone would catch that. :righton:
     
  6. Michael Streett

    Michael Streett Senior Member

    Location:
    Florence, SC
    Ha ha that schedule is pretty extreme of course. I hope to do the Oz trip someday. I’ve done the Atlanta - Tokyo - Hong Kong - Shanghai circuit a couple of times and yeah I was a zombie on either end of that for days afterward lol! This week just two time zones so tomorrow back on schedule I hope!
     
  7. markelis

    markelis Forum Resident

    Location:
    Miami Beach FL
    One from the road:

    Mark has really covered so many points (with which I agree!) so I’ll keep this rather short. By this point in my life, my mid teens, I was buying every new release by the kinks on the day it was released. This record was no exception. I was immediately blown away, I thought the entire double album was fantastic.

    This is one of the rare live releases that leaves me unable to pick between the studio versions of a song and it’s live counterpoint. In almost every case, I find each version equally indispensable. On the live release, the newer songs are played differently, often with a rougher edge. The older hits are played with such excitement and gusto I like hearing them just as much as the originals. I can’t say that about too many bands. I am a huge Rolling Stones fan, but I can’t think of any live recordings that I think match their studio work. Conversely, once you have Skynyrd‘s one for the road, there’s no need for the original studio versions. To me , the Kinks are that rare band that did amazing studio work but managed to consistently reinvent their songs live, leaving you needing and wanting both versions.

    Not much more to say. This album rocks. To me it is a definitive Kinks Klassic.
     
  8. DISKOJOE

    DISKOJOE Boredom That You Can Afford!

    Location:
    Salem, MA
    Yes, it was Bob Lobel! I still remember that hangdog expression on his face.

    What did you do at 'BZ? I remember Liz and Jack, as well as Shelby Scott, who reported in the middle of every snow storm. On the radio side, I listened and still miss, David Brudnoy.
     
  9. markelis

    markelis Forum Resident

    Location:
    Miami Beach FL
    Thanks for posting these pictures. I love Dave’s look in the bottom photo. He looks like a kick a$$ rock and roller who came to play. …and play he doeson this album!
     
  10. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    The flights to/from Perth are pretty tedious.
    Aprox. times
    Perth to Tokyo 10.5 hrs
    Tokyo to Portland 10.5 hrs

    Perth to Sydney 5.5 hrs,
    Sydney to L.A. 16.5 hrs

    Perth to Dubai 11.5 hrs
    Dubai to Houston 16.5 hrs

    I recommend Cairns in North Queensland for a vacation though.
    Great Barrier Reef one side of you, Daintree Rainforest the other :)
     
  11. donstemple

    donstemple Member of the Club

    Location:
    Maplewood, NJ
    One for the Road

    I had heard of this live album, but never listened to it until the past couple weeks. I never saw the Kinks live. I was barely a teenager when they broke up, and wasn’t a fanatik until several years after that. I am lucky enough to have seen Dave live in 2019 at a small show in New Jersey. I had tickets to see Ray live back in 2010, but he had some sort of illness or surgery and had to cancel that part of his tour. Now I have to accept that I will never see Ray live. And that makes me sad.

    But, there is this. This is really an energetic set, and the way they modernized some of the 60s and early 70s songs is impressive. It makes you realize that if they wrote and recorded All Day and All of the Night in 1979 as part of the Low Budget sessions, it probably would have sounded like the live version here. As others mentioned, this is not a nostalgia act. This is a band at a top performance peak, playing rock songs and some ballads with a real purpose.

    I don’t own many live albums. Trying to think, I actually can’t think of any other than the Concert for George, and some of the bonus disc on my Pets Sounds 50th set. But, I really do enjoy listening to live sets on Spotify. There is something really magical about listening to artists perform their songs live. Again, some of the Beach Boys copywrite extension releases that covers practically entire concerts from 1967 - 1969 are a delight to listen to. I wish the Kinks had more. I wish there were more professionally recorded concerts from the 70s. But we do have this, and before this thread, I probably only knew barely half these songs? Now, I will love it all. Looking forward to the deeper dive and really get into the differences between the studio tracks I have loved and these live versions, and reading all your thoughts and memories about these tracks too.
     
  12. palisantrancho

    palisantrancho Forum Resident

    I’d love to do this trip one day, but the flight would be brutal. It says 17-18 hours from Seattle. I struggle with the ten hours to London. Before Covid hit we would travel every summer. Greece and Italy are a couple of our favorite places. We had 3 weeks planned and booked in France in 2020 that all had to be cancelled. I could have visited @Fortuleo!
     
  13. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    This +1!
     
  14. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    You may have gone have gone ga ga!
     
  15. pablo fanques

    pablo fanques Somebody's Bad Handwroter

    Location:
    Poughkeepsie, NY
    I'm out at the moment but I'll try to remember next time I'm home. I had a ton of promo vinyl from my previous radio station and I think that's one. Now I HAVE to check!
     
  16. Geoff738

    Geoff738 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto
    One for the Road. My first Kinks record. I also bought the live video on VCR but I tossed it with the rest of my tapes in the aftermath of the divorce.

    Am interested in hearing the songs/video again after many years not having heard them. I t was one of my friend John’s favourite albums, so I will think of his memory as we go through this.

    I also recall a reviewer describing this as bloodless. In some ways I get that. The band was a well oiled professional group at this point. Maybe not a lot of loose edges. But we’ll see if I get that feeling as we go through it. It certainly was a favourite back in the day, despite my ambivalence towards Low Budget.
     
  17. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    They should have!
     
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  18. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Yes and the Preservation Floosies or Schoolgirls In Disgrace can saunter on suggestively and hold up cards denoting which number round is next!
     
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  19. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Is that a Maiden copy?
     
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  20. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    Swan Lager for you then?
     
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  21. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    More the "Outhouse" actually!
     
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  22. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    After 40 years i just recently opened my sealed Goats Head Soup & The bubblegum platter near disintegrated!
     
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  23. All Down The Line

    All Down The Line Senior Member

    Location:
    Australia
    One For The Road

    I only heard this in full at the turn of this year when I bought a Japanese White Label Promo copy on vinyl.
    Prior to that I was familiar with the live music and visuals an old 80's VHS Kinks tape of interviews and clips (+ conversions to DVD) and 2 modern CD compilations.
    That said this only amounted to a few songs, IIRC it was Celluloid Heroes, Lola, Low Budget & You Really Got Me.
    Though born in '68 & having some Kinks awareness in '77 i did not come to them via this LP nor for the most part Arista & certainly not their much maligned RCA tenure.
    I liked hearing the two slower songs live but somehow this version of YRGM really didn't get me and their new uptempo modernist style I felt was a lesser and diluted version of their peak selves.
    I distinctly recall long ago (25+ years) having an English lady friend over who was no music fan or afficianado whatsoever (No Kinks Knowledge) and putting on my Kinks Rockumentary which musically ran chronologically.
    When Low Budget came on she was mildly aghast and looked at me for an explanation for how they had gotten to this musical juncture after such melodic, endearing and wistful songs.
    Not sure what i said as i found Ray straining and it all a bit tuneless but surmise it along the lines of this was what was required for popularity in the American concert market at that time.
    I think this style put me off buying the LP despite me only having heard a clutch of songs from the album but fast forward to 2021/2022 and i have it and have spun it a few times.
    I really enjoy some tracks certainly, some may leave me a little cold and most I realise I need to spend more time with and look for their charms to be revealed to me so looking forward to a deeper dive with the Avids as they may hope to amass more Koncert Konverts along the road!
     
  24. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Certified dinosaur, who likes physical product Thread Starter

    Opening.

    Album - live, stereo mix, recorded 4 Mar, 1980 at Landmark Theatre, Syracuse, New York

    Hard Way.

    live, stereo mix, recorded 3 Mar, 1979 at The Barn, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey

    As best as I can tell, the Opening first appeared in the Kinks set on February 1st 1977 at the New York Palladium.
    Again, as best I can tell, the Opening ended March 10th 1979 at New York State College.

    The Opening is a rolling and rocking instrumental version of You Really Got Me.

    We open with a musical tease, with Dave giving us a couple of chords, Mick slapping a couple of rolls, and then the tease continues with Dave playing the opening chords, and then waiting.
    Then we have the band kick into it.

    Personally I love the opening, it takes the You Really got Me riff to its ultimate destination with the guitars playing a really solid sounding melody from the vocal over the feel of the well known chordal riff.
    It really does somewhat create a very different version of the track. We have the organ slamming away in the background and the band get this full fat sound that sounds really good, and is a perfect introduction to get the crowd directly into the music.

    It starts the show off with a bang.

    Here we come to the first difference between the concert video and the album.

    One of the disappointing things about the video is it is not presented in set order... it is interesting that I can't find any record of the actual set they played that night, with all sources merely quoting the video setlist... I often wonder if they have the full show on tape, and could possibly release it one day .... Yea I know, it's a Supertramp moment, "Dreamer"...

    Anyway the album races headlong into Hard Way, where the video goes to a song from later in the set, All Day And All Of The Night.

    The opening is a short sharp 1:40 to get everyone in the mood. Possibly also working as a soundcheck device, and to give the guys a chance to get into the groove of the show.

    Hard Way comes in hard and fast with the lone guitar, and then the band punches in nicely.
    Ray is wandering around the stage in the old man mask imitating the headmaster... no guys, not me.... I'm the kid getting the cane, not the headmaster lol

    Ray's vocals are kind of borderline shouty Ray, and his ability to get the words out perfectly at this tempo is very cool.
    For me the live version is way above the studio version, because it is such a tight energised version of the song.
    Ray famously also sings "don't just sit there and masterbate", instead of vegetate.

    We also get a couple of shouts of Ramona, which during the thread it was really cool to find out who/what that was... and now I can visualise the guys messing with a pinball machine.

    For all the talk of Mick not being able to play these songs in this style, I always found his drums on this album to be spot on for the songs we have. Adrenaline is a mighty fine ally.

    Dave gives a couple of glistening little leads and the show is off to a bang of a start.

    As I say on the video we have Ray bouncing around like an angry old man in his mask.
    Jim and Dave seem to be having a good time, and Jim does the echo of "you can take the hard way" in the vocal department.

    Ray's vocals are a little more rough on the video version, but not too much, it is still an excellent version.

    I guess it is poignant from my perspective of the Kinks, that this opening is the first thing I ever heard from the band, aside from radio songs, and they were few and far between in reality, when I consider some of the high rotation bands of my youth.
    So there is a very good chance that this shaped my idea of who the Kinks were, and what they sound like. Thankfully I branched out so wide in my musical taste, that the Kinks could have done just about anything and I would have been able to sit through it and take it in, but in 80-81, some of the stuff from the sixties probably wouldn't have really gelled with who I was at the time. I may well have enjoyed it for what it was, but I would more likely have thought of it as a bit showtime, and not rock and roll enough.... obviously these days we know that I don't feel that way at all.....

    Anyway, for me, a great rock opening to a great rock album.

     
  25. Fortuleo

    Fortuleo Used to be a Forum Resident

    Ok, Ok, Ok, I'm in. Everything here is superb, a band in full power. The Opening/You Really Got Me taster sets the bar at a very high level of expectancy, one that's almost impossible to reach but then boom!, they launch the whipping riff of Hard Way and it's miles above whatever you'd wished for in terms of power, adrenalin and fun, sounding huge, fast and furious. Of course, we've been confronted to some sort of Kinks withdrawal here in the last eight days doing solo Dave, so this opening comes like a rush a well needed Kinks pleasure. I bet @The late man will rejoice at Mick's playing here, this wonderful stumbling style of his that we've been deprived of for almost five years at this point (a little more than two months in thread time!!!) since he was buried in the Sleepwalker mix, all but absent from the Misfits sessions and playing quite differently on the Low Budget stuff. Dave's of course the other star here, leading what's essentially a Who-like power trio now, with Ray becoming a guitar-less frontman. As much as I enjoy the video footage, I prefer the live record's version, with Dave overdubbing the original solo (which is an integral part of the song's appeal for me). As for Ray, he's of course priceless with his Headmaster mask on the video, possessed, fast, biting, a little bit on the shouty/barky side of things, but on a song that DEMANDS it. Phew, what a (re)start !!
     

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