The Kinks

Note to visitors: Now that I have no plans to write new reviews, the home page will feature a different artist, era, genre or special series each week. The old home page can be accessed through the About button on the menu bar.


Fanclub_-_The_Kinks_2.png: VARA. Photographer: W. Veenmanderivative work: I.M.S., CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

When it comes to enduring quality, there are few bands who can compete with The Kinks.

My assessment of their work differs from most critics and thousands of fans in three respects: I don’t think much of Arthur (and boy, did I hear about it!); I think their best albums from the Golden Period are VGPS and Lola; and I love the four albums that make up their theatrical period. I do agree with the general consensus that their time with Arista lacked the depth and richness of their golden years.

But even that assessment has to be taken in context. I’d rather listen to an off-album by The Kinks than the so-called best work of many other rock bands. Ray Davies has remained an exceptionally talented and perceptive songwriter over five decades, and there are few guitarists who have produced as many memorable solos, riffs and fills as Dave Davies. Though the names changed, The Kinks always had a solid rhythm section. And during their golden years, they weren’t afraid to defy norms and expectations, producing a series of great albums that didn’t sell particularly well in their time but are now cherished treasures of rock ‘n’ roll art.

Here are links to all my Kinks reviews:

6 responses

  1. I don’t get it. You praise the Kinks to high heaven, but you don’t even mention The Village Green Preservation Society — an omission I’ve only just noted. What’s this all about? Why moan about Arthur when you don’t even include their masterpiece? I don’t get it.

    1. Typographical omission! Will fix ASAP!

    2. Corrected—the review was also missing from the menus! Thanks for catching that BIG MISS.

      1. My pleasure. Knew it had to be a little bug in the system, you’re not one to make that kind of musical mistake. We’re going to miss the new stuff, but I guess your past reviews will become all the more essential reading.

  2. I’m with you on 2 out or 3 of your statements : Arthur wasn’t my favourite of their albums (mind you, I disagree with some opinions in your review of the album) and the 2 best Kinks albums are Village Green Preservation Society and Lola. However, with the exception of “Celluloid Heroes” (beautiful) and the first “Preservation” album (especially “Sweet Lady Genevieve” and “Where Are They Now” … superb, both …), I’m not a huge fan of their “theatrical” period.

    Cheers – Rick.

  3. I’m glad you have featured the Kinks. They have always been somewhat off of my radar, and back when I was a teenager in California in the 70’s no one I knew thought much of them, it was all about Pink Floyd, Zeppelin, The Who ,Yes, Black Sabbath etc……the Kinks were more like a relic from the past like Hermans Hemits or something, and I always saw their albums in the cut out bins so I was never really interested. Thanks for giving these somewhat obscure albums ( to me) some love . It sounds like Ray Davies was way ahead of his time in many ways and now I have some cool old stuff to check out. Better late then never……Hope you are well in whatever you are up to these days!

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