Wednesday, 23 November 2011

The Kinks are Well Respected Men!

Well it's almost an annual ritual here that every year as we approach the Christmas season, a expensive box set arrives for me to buy, starve the cat for a few weeks or something a bit like that and this year is no exception.
The Kinks are quite simply one of the most important British groups of the 60's who took R&B, created the heavy metal riff with You Really Got Me and pioneered social comment in popular music with albums like Face To Face as well as The Village Green Preservation Society exploring the British way of life and inspiring countless acts ever since.

Entitled the Kinks In Mono, this set comprises of the seven UK albums of the period plus two discs of mono collectible versions plus a disc with four of their EP recordings on it, housed in a mini lp style sleeve, gatefolded with credits and fresh photographs on the inner folds.
The first three albums -Kinks, Kinda Kinks and The Kinks Kontroversy - are R&B albums with a high number of originals such as Stop Your Sobbing,Tired Of Waiting and Till The End Of The Day leading to the band being adopted by the 'Mods'.
From 1966's Face To Face onward Ray Davis's introspective song writing comes to the for with such classics as Dandy (a massive hit for Herman's Hermits in the States), Sunny Afternoon, David Watts as covered by The Jam, Death of a Clown, the impossibly perfect Waterloo Sunset, Starstruck (from Village Green Preservation Society) and Victoria from 'Arthur'.
The EP disc takes in four UK EP's (Kinksize session, Kinksize Hits, Kwyet Kinks and Dedicated Kinks) with Louie Louie, All Day and All Of The Night, A Well Respected Man, Dedicated Follower of Fashion and Set Me Free while the Mono Kollectables has singles mixes, b sides and the mono Lola and Apeman singles.
The mastering for is very good, a little louder than the early Kinks discs from mid 1980's but with plenty of contrast between the loudest and softest volumes and much improved on the 1998 re-issues with Village Green having a brand new mastering exclusive to this set.
For the money I think it's worth it, lacking a set of Kinks albums on cd.
At the bottom there are some picture one of the discs in the box and another of the book which is like the Pop Annuals Radio Luxembourg and Thank Your Lucky stars had out back then telling the Kinks story.
It's no weighty tomb of knowledge never mind a set of lyrics so you'll go whistle if that's what you want but as a slightly goofy period like introduction to the band it serves well being a fun read.

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