Low Budget (album)

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Low Budget
Studio album by The Kinks
Released 10 July 1979 (US)
7 September 1979 (UK)[1]
Recorded January 1979 – June 1979 at the Power Station and Blue Rock Studios, New York
Genre Hard rock
Length 43:16
Label Arista
Producer Ray Davies
The Kinks chronology
Low Budget
One for the Road
Singles from Low Budget
  1. "(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman"
    Released: 26 January 1979 (26 January 1979)
  2. "A Gallon of Gas"
    Released: 7 August 1979 (U.S.) (7 August 1979 (U.S.))
  3. "Catch Me Now I'm Falling"
    Released: 5 September 1979 (U.S.) (5 September 1979 (U.S.))
  4. "Moving Pictures"
    Released: 28 September 1979 (U.K.) (28 September 1979 (U.K.))
  5. "Pressure"
    Released: 30 November 1979 (U.K.) (30 November 1979 (U.K.))
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[2]
Blender 3/5 stars[3]
Robert Christgau B−[4]
Rolling Stone (favourable)[5]

Low Budget is the seventeenth studio album by the English rock group, The Kinks, released in 1979. It was a great success for the group, becoming their best-selling non-compilation album, peaking at #11 on the US album charts.[6]

Low Budget represented a major renaissance for the Kinks, especially in the United States. After a decade of concept albums and songs that recalled simpler times, Low Budget marked a new direction for the Kinks by addressing contemporary issues such as inflation, labour strife (which was especially severe in the U.K. during the 1978-79 Winter of Discontent), and the 1979 energy crisis. Songs such as "Catch Me Now I'm Falling", which was Davies' take on America's declining influence in the world, "(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman", "Low Budget", and "A Gallon of Gas", epitomized these themes. In another change for the band, the Kinks recorded Low Budget in the U.S. and launched an extensive concert tour in America to support the album. Six of the eleven songs from the album are included on the double-live album One for the Road which was recorded in 1979 and 1980 during the Low Budget tour.


Five songs were released from "Low Budget" as singles (one in both the U.S. and U.K., two in the U.S., and two in the U.K.) with varying degrees of success.

"(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman"[edit]

"(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman", influenced by Davies's viewing of a "Superman" movie,[7] was the only track on "Low Budget" to be made a single (with "Low Budget" as B-side) in both Britain and America. It was also the only single to chart.

"A Gallon of Gas"[edit]

Main article: A Gallon of Gas

"A Gallon of Gas", a track based on the difficulty to buy gas at the time, was a U.S. only single, backed with "Low Budget". It did not chart.

"Catch Me Now I'm Falling"[edit]

"Catch Me Now I'm Falling", backed with "Low Budget", was the second U.S. only single, as well as the second not to chart. The song shows Ray Davies portraying Captain America as symbolism of the United States, and criticizes both the U.S. and the countries that did not come to its aid.

"Moving Pictures"[edit]

"Moving Pictures", the second U.K. single, laments on how life is "always moving.". "Moving Pictures" was released as a single in the U.K. backed with "In a Space". It did not make a dent in the charts.


"Pressure" was the third and final U.K. single from "Low Budget", with "National Health" as the B-side. AllMusic claimed that it "wants to be an anthem but never really develops any sort of compelling continuity."[8] It was released in live format on One for the Road.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Ray Davies

Side 1
No. Title Length
1. "Attitude"   3:47
2. "Catch Me Now I'm Falling"   5:58
3. "Pressure"   2:27
4. "National Health"   4:02
5. "(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman"   3:36
Side 2
No. Title Length
1. "Low Budget"   3:50
2. "In a Space"   3:44
3. "Little Bit of Emotion"   4:51
4. "A Gallon of Gas"   3:48
5. "Misery"   2:57
6. "Moving Pictures"   3:47
CD reissue bonus tracks
No. Title Length
12. "A Gallon of Gas" ([Note 1]) 3:52
13. "Catch Me Now I'm Falling" ([Note 2]) 6:49
14. "(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman" ([Note 3]) 5:59
  1. ^ U.S. single extended edit with extra verse. Originally released as a single in the United States only, August 1979.
  2. ^ Original extended edit. Previously unreleased.
  3. ^ Disco mix extended edit. Originally released as a 12″ single in the United States, 12 March 1979, and in the United Kingdom, March 1979. Never before released on compact disc.



  1. ^ "Kinks, The - Low Budget". discogs.com. Retrieved 10 July 2011. 
  2. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "The Kinks: Low Budget > Review" at AllMusic. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  3. ^ Blender review[dead link]
  4. ^ Christgau, Robert. "The Kinks". RobertChristgau.com. Retrieved 13 November 2011. 
  5. ^ Fricke, Davie (20 September 1979). "The Kinks: Low Budget". Rolling Stone (Straight Arrow) (RS 300). ISSN 0035-791X. Archived from the original on 2 October 2007. 
  6. ^ "The Kinks' Chart Positions". kindakinks.net. Retrieved 13 November 2011. 
  7. ^ Hasted, N. (2011). You Really Got Me: The Story of The Kinks. Omnibus Press. ISBN 9781849386609. 
  8. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "The Kinks: Low Budget > Review" at AllMusic. Retrieved 13 November 2011.