Things that are buggin’ me today
#1. Employees who follow me into the restroom and want to ‘chat’.
#2. Teenagers with the Black Flag logo tattooed on their forearm and who have no clue who Black Flag were.
#3. Douche-bags who smoke cloves.
#4. Anyone who uses the word “whilst”.
#5. Intestinal flu.
#6. IPod ear buds.
#7. Defective grocery carts.
#8. My alarm clock, which seems to ‘auto tune’ to a Christian Rock station each night.
#9. People who try and make a point by saying, “that being said…”.
#10. Musical greeting cards.
#11. The check engine light on my car.
#12. Phone trees.
#13. Most retail clerks.
#14. Noisy eaters.
#15. People who walk slowly.
And the #1 reason for my angst-ridden demeanor? The way the rock glitterati ignore the 70’s output of one of my favorite bands, The Kinks. And, as fantastic and innovative and influential as they were in the 60’s, the fact that this particular group is always relegated to the bottom of the hierarchy is unforgivable. It’s very rare any of their albums make it into a Top 100 list.
Why don’t the Kinks get any goddamn respect?
I’ve gone off on this tangent before. Words often used to describe the 70’s Kinks are “misguided”, “pandering”, “stadium schlock”, “hopelessly muddled”, “ill conceived”, “indulgent”, “impenetrable” and “formulaic” to quote but a few. While it may be true that the band peaked somewhere around 1968-70, I think it is a great crime to simply dismiss their 70’s records as substandard. Different, more polished for sure, but just as melodic and, actually, a little less precious and delicate.
Every great 60’s band that survived through the 70’s (and especially those that survived into the 80’s) released their fair share of musical turds. Neil Young, Bob Dylan, The Who, Zeppelin, Jefferson Airplane (Starship—ugghhh!) and a host of others had years and years of shitty releases, some regaining their dignity (Dylan, Young) while others tarnished their once proud careers beyond salvation.
The Kinks were one of the most innovative bands of the British invasion era, but were (and still are) overlooked in almost every way, especially Ray’s (and Dave’s—almost forgot how great Death Of A Clown is) songwriting abilities and influence on the future of punk rock, metal, pop and the so-called Brit-Pop movement of the early to mid ‘90’s.
The band released 10 LP’s between the years 1964-1969, seven of which were full blown classics, containing such classic songs as ‘Well Respected Man’, ‘Dedicated Follower Of Fashion’, ‘All Day and All Of The Night’, ‘Tired Of Waiting For You’, ‘You Really Got Me’, Lola, ‘Till The End Of The Day’, ‘Stop Your Sobbing’, ‘Sunny Afternoon’, the absolutely gorgeous ’Waterloo Sunset’, ’David Watts’, ’Death Of A Clown’ and ’Victoria’, to name but a mere few.
I mean, come on! I’ll put those songs, and many other album tracks, up against anything by the so-called ’Holy Trinity’. Well…at least the Who and The Stones. Don’t get me wrong, the Stones and the Who were great bands, but the Who has turned into Spinal Tap and the last semi-interesting album the Stones did was Tattoo You, which was released over 30 years ago.
Go on and sink your teeth into Misfits, into Sleepwalker, into Give The People What They Want and, to a lesser extent, into Low Budget. Then, when you’re done digesting the nuggets from those overlooked albums, jump head first into one of the best rock albums ever made: Muswell Hillbillies.
Suck it all you Kinks haters!