This is an mp3 blog attempting to document the gross amount of music I listen to. About once a day, I'll post something I like. If you're a copyright holder on anything I host, get in touch, and we'll settle things in a steel cage instead of a courtroom.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

The Kinks - or - Paul who? McCarthy?

Whenever some magazine or website does a ranking of the best albums of all time, it usually ends up a depressing exercise of which Beatles albums go in which order. (Unless it's some insane British periodical putting the Happy Mondays at #1, but even then, at least it's not a boring choice.) Forgetting that Sgt. Pepper's was a boring piece of hokey, conservative shit, it's depressing that it's same same five Beatles records occupying the top 10 when artists like the Zombies, the Sonics, the Byrds, Desmond Dekker were all making records that were just as good, if not better. Included in this list should the Kinks. (Isn't it great when Amy and I have the same idea on the same day?)

I've always thought of the Kinks as this weird, alternate universe version of the Beatles, if that makes sense. At least, what the general consensus on the Beatles is, i.e. four moppish Brits hit it big with simple music before expanding into progressive albums that forever changed the rock soundscape. Yeah, the Beatles were more influential on account of sheer popularity, but Paul McCartney never wrote a gentle standard as genuinely affecting and brilliant as "Waterloo Sunset," though Lord knows he's spent his whole life trying. The Beatles never rocked harder than "All Day and All of the Night," and their little slice-of-life song subset doesn't include anything on par with "Situation Vacant." The aforementioned Sgt. Pepper's is quasi-pastoral and straight-faced; the Kinks' album The Village Green Preservation Society is the same thing on the surface, but it becomes quite apparent quite readily that it's a wicked piece of satire, mercilessly skwering the fogheaded types who pine nostalgically for an age which never existed. I think it's telling that the best of the post-70's rock songwriters - Costello, Leo, Weller, - have taken many cues from Kinks frontman Ray Davies and virtually none from the Lennon/McCartney tagteam.

I'm including a smattering of my favorite Kinks songs, be they hits, ignored album cuts, or b-sides (including the absolutely jaw-dropping "I'm Not Like Everybody Else," which the Sex Pistols definitely should have covered).

All Day and All of the Night:

Gotta Get the First Plane Home:

I'm Not Like Everybody Else:

Tired of Waiting For You:

Situation Vacant:

Johnny Thunder:

Acute Schizophrenia Paranoia Blues:


Blogger AmyMeacham said...

Haha! It was a beautiful sunny afternoon here in the Atl, and that song got me started looking for those cool videos...

3:58 AM


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