Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Higher Education

The last of The Kinks musical theater albums hit the record bins in January 1976. Schoolboys In Disgrace is a prequel of sorts to the Preservation albums, as it covers the last of the school days of the character Flash. On the non-musical level, I think the LP cover is the best of The Kinks RCA years. The front comic drawing of a school boy smarting from corporal punishment has to be seen to be believed, and the back shows the now five Kinks in schoolboy attire, and Ray Davies' expression is worth the price of the LP.

The music is a move back towards the rock'n'roll world. The spoken sections and theatrical interludes of the previous concept albums are gone. The musical styles run the gamut from 50s doo wop to contemporary rock. Its a fun romp but I wish it were better. Dave's guitar is front and center on several tunes, and he certainly proves that he has the chops. A further move towards a more mainstream 70s rock sound is just around the corner.

Here is one of the real rock'n'roll cuts - No More Looking Back.
Thanks to Vivalabeat for providing a live video on Youtube:


Holly A Hughes said...

(Sorry I haven't been able to keep up daily here -- it's all I can do to crank out my own daily Kinks posts!)

I agree that this album could have been better. But No More Looking Back makes the whole album worth it on its own! So no surprise that you and I would have picked the same track to feature from Schoolboys.

Who Am Us Anyway? said...

Oh it’s a killer all right & pierces right to the heart of it:

Then you're in every bar, you're in every cafĂ©, You're driving every car, I see you everyday…

But for me it’s in a race to the wire with the (equally insightful) truth-telling doo wop of the way underrated The First Time We Fall In Love -- time goes by but we never forget the first time we fall in love. And aint that the wise truth, & never put more honestly.