Something Else by the Kinks

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Something Else by the Kinks
SomethingElseKinksCover.jpg
Studio album by
Released15 September 1967 (UK)
January 1968 (US)
RecordedApril 1966 – July 1967
StudioPye Studios, London
Genre
Length36:17
LabelPye
Producer
The Kinks chronology
Face to Face
(1966)
Something Else by the Kinks
(1967)
The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society
(1968)
Singles from Something Else by the Kinks
  1. "Waterloo Sunset"
    Released: 5 May 1967
  2. "Death of a Clown"
    Released: 7 July 1967

Something Else by the Kinks, often referred to simply as Something Else, is the fifth UK studio album by the Kinks, released in September 1967. It marks the final involvement of American producer Shel Talmy in the Kinks' 1960s studio recordings; henceforth Ray Davies would produce recordings. Many of the recordings feature the keyboard work of Nicky Hopkins and the backing vocals of Davies's wife, Rasa. Two hit singles are included: "Waterloo Sunset" and "Death of a Clown". The album was ranked No. 288 on Rolling Stone magazine's 2003 list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.[1] It was voted number 237 in Colin Larkin's All Time Top 1000 Albums 3rd Edition (2000).[2]

Recording[edit]

Ray Davies assumed control over production after the departure of Shel Talmy; hence Something Else marked a change in the sound and production style of the Kinks. Davies felt unsure of his skill in mixing and recording the group's records, and later commented: "I feel that I shouldn't have been allowed to produce Something Else. What went into an album required someone whose approach was a little bit more mundane".[3]

Apart from "End of the Season" (done in April 1966), the album was recorded between the autumn of 1966 and the summer of 1967, when the Kinks had cut back on touring and had begun recording and stockpiling songs for Davies's as-yet poorly defined "village green" project. The song "Village Green" was recorded in November 1966 during the sessions for the album, but was released on a French EP in 1967 and did not appear on a Kinks LP until the next release, The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society.

Composition[edit]

Musically, Something Else features multiple different genres and stylistic influences, from the chamber pop of "Death of a Clown"[4] to the bossa nova of "No Return".[5] Departing from the hard-edged rock and roll of the group's earlier material, the album features mellower, acoustic baroque pop ballads,[6] English music hall, and "tempered" R&B.[7]

Ray Davies's lyrics on the album deal with English-inspired subject matter, particularly the harpsichord-laden "Two Sisters", the lazy shuffle "End of the Season", and the sardonic "David Watts".

The album includes three songs composed by Dave Davies, including the hit single "Death of a Clown".

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic5/5 stars[7]
Pitchfork9.3/10[5]
Rolling Stone(positive)[8]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music5/5 stars[9]

The album sold poorly in the UK, in part because it competed with budget-priced compilation albums of early Kinks hits from 1964 to 1966;[citation needed] also, Pye Records had released "Waterloo Sunset", "Death of a Clown" and other songs before the album appeared. Something Else also sold poorly in the US upon release there in January 1968, where the group was still the subject of a US ban on live and television performances.

James Pomeroy, in a March 1968 review in Rolling Stone, felt it was the best album the Kinks had made to that point, praising the "humor, cynicism, perception and irony" where he felt the band are at their best.[10] He picked out "David Watts" and "Waterloo Sunset" as the best tracks, and also praised the three contributions of Dave Davies.[10]

In a retrospective review for AllMusic, Stephen Thomas Erlewine felt that the work was characterised by "nostalgic and sentimental" songwriting, and that part of "the album's power lies in its calm music, since it provides an elegant support for Davies' character portraits and vignettes".[7]

In 2003, Something Else was ranked No. 288 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time,[1] No. 289 in a 2012 revised list,[11] and later at No. 478 in the 2020 revised list.[12]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Ray Davies, except where noted.

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."David Watts" 2:32
2."Death of a Clown"Dave Davies, R. Davies3:04
3."Two Sisters" 2:01
4."No Return" 2:03
5."Harry Rag" 2:16
6."Tin Soldier Man" 2:49
7."Situation Vacant" 3:16
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Love Me Till the Sun Shines"D. Davies3:16
2."Lazy Old Sun" 2:48
3."Afternoon Tea" 3:27
4."Funny Face"D. Davies2:17
5."End of the Season" 2:57
6."Waterloo Sunset" 3:15
1998 and 2004 CD reissue bonus tracks
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
14."Act Nice and Gentle" 2:39
15."Autumn Almanac" 3:05
16."Susannah's Still Alive"D. Davies2:22
17."Wonderboy" 2:49
18."Polly" 2:51
19."Lincoln County"D. Davies3:12
20."There Is No Life Without Love"D. Davies, R. Davies2:01
21."Lazy Old Sun" (Unreleased alternate stereo take) 2:53
2011 Sanctuary Records deluxe edition Disc 1 (mono) bonus tracks
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
14."Act Nice and Gentle" (mono) 2:39
15."Mr. Pleasant" (mono) 3:00
16."Susannah's Still Alive" (mono)D. Davies2:21
17."Autumn Almanac" (mono) 3:09
18."Harry Rag" (alternative take) 2:13
19."David Watts" (alternative take) 2:32
20."Afternoon Tea" (Canadian mono mix) 3:26
21."Sunny Afternoon" (recorded for the BBC) 2:52
22."Autumn Almanac" (recorded for the BBC) 3:05
23."Mr. Pleasant" (recorded for the BBC) 2:48
24."Susannah's Still Alive" (recorded for the BBC)D. Davies2:14
25."David Watts" (recorded for the BBC) 2:10
26."Love Me Till the Sun Shines" (recorded for the BBC, different from that released on the Picture Book boxset)D. Davies2:19
27."Death of a Clown" (recorded for the BBC)D. Davies, R. Davies2:54
28."Good Luck Charm" (recorded for the BBC)Spider John Koerner1:20
29."Harry Rag" (recorded for the BBC) 2:25
30."Little Women" (backing track) 2:10
2011 Sanctuary Records deluxe edition Disc 2 (stereo) bonus tracks
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
14."Susannah's Still Alive" (stereo)D. Davies2:21
15."Autumn Almanac" (stereo) 3:13
16."Sand on My Shoes" (stereo) 3:05
17."Afternoon Tea" (alternative version) 3:45
18."Mr. Pleasant" (alternative version) 3:22
19."Lazy Old Sun" (alternative vocal version) 3:15
20."Funny Face" (alternative stereo version)D. Davies2:42
21."Afternoon Tea" (German stereo version) 2:15
22."Tin Soldier Man" (alternative backing track) 3:06

Personnel[edit]

Track numbering refers to CD and digital releases of the album.

The Kinks

with:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "288 | Something Else By the Kinks - The Kinks". Rolling Stone. No. Special Issue. Straight Arrow. November 2003. ISSN 0035-791X. Archived from the original on 1 January 2012. Retrieved 9 November 2011.
  2. ^ Larkin, Colin, ed. (2000). All Time Top 1000 Albums (3rd ed.). London, England: Virgin Books. p. 109. ISBN 0-7535-0493-6.
  3. ^ Something Else CD liner notes
  4. ^ https://m.chicagoreader.com/chicago/kinks-guitarist-dave-davies-continues-to-stake-his-claim-as-a-rawk-god-at-age-72/Content?oid=69567449
  5. ^ a b Sante, Luc (25 March 2018). "The Kinks: Something Else". Pitchfork. Retrieved 25 March 2018.
  6. ^ Thompson, Brian (15 September 2017). "From the Record Crate: The Kinks – "Something Else by The Kinks" (1967)". The Young Folks. Retrieved 23 February 2020.
  7. ^ a b c Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Something Else by The Kinks - The Kinks | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 22 February 2015.
  8. ^ "Something Else By The Kinks". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 22 February 2015.
  9. ^ Larkin, Colin (2007). Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-0857125958.
  10. ^ a b James Pomeroy (9 March 1968). "Something Else By The Kinks". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 7 October 2012.
  11. ^ "500 Greatest Albums of All Time Rolling Stone's definitive list of the 500 greatest albums of all time". Rolling Stone. 2012. Retrieved 10 September 2019.
  12. ^ "Something Else by the Kinks ranked 478th greatest album by Rolling Stone magazine". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 19 November 2020.

External links[edit]