Destroyer (The Kinks song)

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Single by The Kinks
from the album Give the People What They Want
B-side "Back to Front"
Released 28 September 1981 (US)
Format 7" single
Recorded May 1979 - June 1981
Genre Rock, hard rock, new wave
Length 3:47
Label Arista AS 0619
Writer(s) Ray Davies
Producer(s) Ray Davies
The Kinks US singles chronology
"You Really Got Me (live)"
"Better Things"

"Destroyer" is a song by British rock band The Kinks, written by Ray Davies. It was released as a track on the group's nineteenth album, Give the People What They Want, in August 1981, and was the album's lead single in the US. It was not released as a single in the UK.


"Destroyer" was initially planned to appear on the band's previous album, Low Budget, appearing in early track listings of the in-progress album.[1] However, the song was dropped from Low Budget because the band could not create a satisfactory mix.

Music and lyrics[edit]

The song features many callbacks to previous Kinks songs, both lyrically and musically. The track borrows the main riff from The Kinks' 1964 song, "All Day and All of the Night", which was one of the band's first hits. The lyrics are a continuation of The Kinks' 1970 hit song, "Lola", which is about a transvestite. In "Destroyer", the protagonist of the song becomes paranoid after taking Lola back to his place[citation needed].

Release and reception[edit]

The track was chosen as the lead single from the album in the US ("Better Things" was the lead single in the UK), although it was released after the album in September. In 1982, the single reached #3 on the Billboard Rock Top Tracks chart and #85 on the Billboard Hot 100.[2]

In the UK, the track was only available when the album was released there in January 1982.


  1. ^ Hinman, Doug. All Day and All of the Night. p. 230. 
  2. ^ "The Kinks US Charts". allmusic. Retrieved 2015-04-05. 

External links[edit]