Yes, I know, Ray Davies usually gets all the credit, but Kinks fans have always known Dave was a very strong element. This very cool two-CD set compiles Kinks classics, songs from the guitarist’s first two solo albums from 1980 and ’81, and some live stuff and unreleased demos. And it shows Dave to be a fine writer and (to no one’s surprise) a killer rock and roll guitarist.
There’s lots of stuff here. From “You Really Got Me” to the Dylanesque “Wait Till the Summer Comes Along,” to a nasty “Milk Cow Blues,” to the power chord heaven of “Nothing More to Lose,” Dave shines in every aspect. His vocals are wonderful, whether copping a Dylan pose, or sounding very English in cuts like “Unfinished Business.” The arrangements, especially on acoustic stuff like “Love Gets You,” really shine. And I don’t need to tell you about the guitar solos. They literally ooze rock and roll. Kinks fans will love this, and others should check it out.
This review originally appeared in VG‘s April ’99 issue.