The Kinks, Everybody’s In Showbiz

Ira Robbins

By Ira Robbins

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Everybody's In Showbiz

The Kinks
The Kinks reconcile road weariness and the will to rock on this ’70s classic

Whether it was a reflection of actual dissipation or a theatrical affectation, the Kinks of the early '70s &#8212 an alcohol-fueled, broad-strokes Americanized party band &#8212 had little in common with the velvet-coated British Invasion dandies of their emergence. Everybody's in Show-Biz exploited the band's popularity as a concert attraction with an entertaining 11-track set, recorded (with a horn section!) at New York's Carnegie Hall, containing such boozy singalongs as "Alcohol," "Holiday" and "Lola." That pairs up with the studio half of the album, much of which concerns road weariness. Guitarist Dave Davies sings "You Don't Know My Name," which shows Rod Stewart and the Faces a thing or two; "Here Comes Another Day," "Look a Little on the Sunny Side" and "Motorways" are typically witty and charming observations by Ray Davies, whose emotional exhaustion and alienation peak on "Sitting in My Hotel," a gorgeous ode to loneliness that should have been on the soundtrack to Lost in Translation. Davies 'desperate need to escape &#8212 in the Caribbean-styled "Supersonic Rocket Ship" and "Unreal Reality" &#8212 make for uncomfortable entertainment; he's more at ease leaving the here and now for the tender nostalgia of "Celluloid Heroes," a heartbreaking six-minute history of bygone Hollywood that has endured as one of this great band's hallmarks.