Tag Archives: Kinks

Return of the Village Green Preservation Society

As I am someone who has long enjoyed the music of the Kinks and the Doors, you might think that I would be over the proverbial moon with the recent announcements—one iffier than the other—that (1) the Kinks are reuniting and (2) there is a 50th anniversary version of Waiting for the Sun coming out this September.

As for the first, Sir Ray Davies (must give the man his propers) told the BBC that he was getting the band back together to record an album, having been inspired by The Rolling Stones’ recent spate of European concerts. The Kinks were formed in ’64, managed to get banned from touring in the U.S. for four years starting in ’65, and disbanded in ’96. The last bona-fide Kinks album, To the Bone, was released in ’94. In addition to Sir Ray, the band included his brother Dave, Mick Avory, and Pete Quaife. Quaife died in 2010. So the reunion would be of a trio, not a quartet.

As for the second, the Doors formed in 1965, and consisted of Jim Morrison, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore, and Robby Krieger. Their first album, The Doors, appeared in 1967. Waiting for the Sun was the third album, appearing in 1968. L.A. Woman was their last proper album, as it was released in April 1971 and Jim Morrison died in July of that year.

So while there is certainty that the Doors album will appear, whether the Kinks record or not is something that remains to be heard.

And I hope that they don’t.

Realize that the band hasn’t existed since 1996. That’s 22 years ago. The band itself existed for 32 years, which is a long run by any measure and the body of work that it produced includes some of the best songs of the late 20th century.

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“Black Hills that I ain’t never seen”

As long-time readers of this site may recall, there was once a tagline used to describe the ethos of Glorious Noise: “Rock and roll can change your life.”

And now I must report with some sadness that it can change lives in a way that I’d prefer not to imagine.

A few weeks ago I wrote about Ray Davies becoming knighted by the Queen.

And a couple weeks before that I wrote about how Roger Daltrey was working with Rolls-Royce to create a bespoke version of the Wraith motorcar.

Now the two subjects have come together.

The Who version of the Rolls Wraith has come out. It features the artwork of Mike McInnery: the album cover of Tommy is painted on the hood and the birds that are also part of the cover art flit about on the fenders and C-pillars.

But that is but one of nine “Inspired by British Music” cars that has been developed.

Continue reading “Black Hills that I ain’t never seen”

Queen Elizabeth Catches a Cold

Let’s face it: given that dragons have, so far as we know, all been slain, there isn’t a whole lot left for knights to do. And given that there aren’t a whole lot of functional tasks left for royalty, there are basically symbolic actions for them to perform, such as participating in parades and making unusual hand gestures that are interpreted as waving.

So knights: not a whole lot of call for defense of the realm.

Queens: not much more to do than being royalty.

One thing that has been occurring in Great Britain for nearly 100 years is that the person wearing the crown celebrates the new year with honors—or honours—during which time people who are otherwise known as “commoners” get elevated in rank.

Some people become knights.

Nowadays, it seems, defending the realm of Great Britain is all about financial defense. Sir Paul McCartney is probably not going to be called upon to draw his sword. Chances are, it is more about how he’s helped out the Chancellor of the Exchequer over the past many years.

Let’s face it: when it comes to popular music, the Brits have clearly been doing a better job of coming up with new acts, and sustaining old ones, than any other country on earth, at least from the standpoint of their having achieved popularity and/or visibility. That is, based on statistics alone there are probably Chinese analogues of the Beatles and the Stones, though those of us in the west don’t know about them.

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Johnny Rotten’s Favorite Records

John Lydon shares the Soundtrack of His Life with the Guardian‘s Observer:

It’s very hard for me to prepare for something like this because I collect non-stop, discover new things every day, and take music very seriously. I hate the technological rip-offs that pass for music formats these days, and go back to vinyl to hear a good record because the sound is always so much fuller. I don’t even like listening to music in the car.

1. The Kinks – “You Really Got Me” (1964)

More of Lydon’s faves after the jump…

Continue reading Johnny Rotten’s Favorite Records

Oasis – Dig Out Your Soul

Oasis - Dig Out Your SoulOasisDig Out Your Soul (Warner Bros./Reprise)

This is a review for Oasis fans. I’ve found over the years that it’s impossible to convince anyone of Oasis’ ability to be anything more than loudmouthed musical thieves. Never mind the fact that very traits that prompt accolades from fans and critics alike for equally derivative bands like Sloan, Spoon, and even my beloved Elliott Smith are all cited as evidence that the Gallaghers et al. are nothing more than Beatle worshipping dipshits with great hair and big amps. So, the rest of you can click away, we’re going to revel in our fandom for a bit.

Most artists (and yes I know Noel Gallagher doesn’t consider himself an artist) have periods of inspiration followed by terms of mediocrity or creative drought. Perhps the energy of having created greatness leaves them depleted and withered for a spell. Or maybe they simply got lucky with a couple great pieces and then the luck ran out? Most will tell you that Oasis peaked with 1995’s What’s the Story Morning Glory—a truer testament to Britain’s domination over pop culture in the mid-90s than flannel wearing Cobain worshippers would have you believe—and there’s an argument to be made there. But I think that argument rests mainly on the band’s position as pop culture icons, especially in Britain, and the fact that they not only beat the sophomore slump in which so many bands slog but for a brief moment made the premise seem silly. Morning Glory established the band once and for all as the dominant British lords of pop music and banished their rivals Blur to the college rock ghetto until they too rose up to hypnotize America with “Song #2,” which oddly sounded more like Nirvana than the Kinks, but I digress.

Continue reading Oasis – Dig Out Your Soul

Kinks reunion coming soon?

BBC News reports that Ray Davies is keen for a Kinks reunion as long as they “could do new songs, even if it’s four or five”:

“My pitch to the other guys in the band – because I’m really for it – was what would we have written if we hadn’t have had our first hit, You Really Got Me?” he said.

“What if we put ourselves in that situation, what would have happened? So I think new work is important for artists as they mature and get older.

“The amazing thing is that The Kinks are the only band, of that period, where the only original members are still alive,” he added.

Who knows? With the band’s history, it might be a great show, might be a disaster, might just be a bore…

Video: The Kinks – “Till the End of the Day”

Previously: Review: Ray Davies – Other People’s Lives (2006).