The Kinks, Low Budget

Chris Hunt

By Chris Hunt

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Low Budget

The Kinks
Ray Davies rediscovers his sense of humor.

Finally reaping reward from their US touring, Low Budget was the best and most successful Kinks album for some time, even though many of its themes were long-term Ray Davies pre-occupations: the National Health Service, petrol shortages, life on the breadline. On Low Budget though, Davies rediscovered his sense of humor, the title track a semi-autobiographical take on his own legendary penny-pinching nature: "Money's rare there's none to be found/ So don't think I'm tight if I don't buy a round". The deadpan lyricism was harnessed to contemporary rock power riffs and presented with the charismatic delivery of a master showman. It was an album that recaptured some of the spontaneity of old, partly because it was largely recorded in New York rather than in Ray's own North London Konk Studios. "Pressure" was even recorded in one take, something Davies had not allowed for some time. Standout cuts included the epic "Catch Me Now I'm Falling," the minor US hit "I Wish I Could Fly Like Superman" and "Moving Pictures."