Long Lost Musical Gem #2

The B-side to Dead End Street, this is a killer song from 1966. Guitars flash, Ray Davies’ vocals are dead-on, there’s a rollicking countryesque lope to the melody, and in two and a half minutes he captures the desperation of a young woman trying to escape her dull suburban life. Unfortunately, Joe takes her money and runs. It begins and ends with wildly pealing church bells, and in between is pure Britpop bliss.

From Face to Face through Arthur, the Kinks were unrivaled. They were also completely unrecognized in the US. Village Green Preservation Society is probably my all-time favorite album (it’s a tossup between that and Exile on Main Street). They were very derivative (hey, that song sounds like the Beatles! That one is the Stones! No, wait, that one is The Who!), but Ray’s lyrics were lightyears beyond his contemporaries. Popular music would never again be this sensitive, challenging, and fun.

For a perfect introduction to The Kinks’ golden age, listen to The Kink Kronikles.

If all you know about them is Come Dancing, Lola, or You Really Got Me, then you are in for a treat.

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