The Kinks, Preservation Act 1

Chris Hunt

By Chris Hunt

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Preservation Act 1

The Kinks
Ray Davies goes back to the concept album well again.

Taking his inspiration from 1968's The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society, Davies set about constructing a concept album based around the premise of the forces of capitalism placing his rural idyll in jeopardy. With a loosely sketched plot, the concept, and its execution, were flawed when compared to similar experiments by Pete Townshend, but it contains moments of brilliance. "Sweet Lady Genevieve" remains one of the great Kinks songs of the period, while "Sitting in the Midday Sun" revisits the territory of "Sunny Afternoon." Davies is at his best when looking back and "Where Are They Are?" catches him reminiscing about the style icons of the '50s and '60s, also nodding to many of the era's fictional angry young men, such as Joe Lampton, Jimmy Porter and Charlie Bubbles. In parts it is music hall, in other places it is rock'n'roll homage, but it remains quintessentially Davies in tone and seven months later he fleshed out the concept to a further double album, with the release of Preservation Act II.