on 23 January 2010
I agree, ignore the critics, especially those who want to type cast the Kinks and not allow them to move on from the 60's this album captures another place in time, late 80's Ray Davies after the Arista years in America, at his innovative best, harking back to the past but with new light to the future, not frightened to experiment, starts with Aggravation which is almost a continuation of 20th century Man from Muswell Hillbillies Album, stand out tracks for me are 'UK Jive' a real Rock & Roller, 'Entertainment', 'War is over', very appropriate for the naughties, 'Loony Balloon', here Ray harks back to what he does best, singer song writer tongue in cheek perhaps, but this man is an observer of life and boy can he put it on paper, three from Dave more rockers than Rays, Dear Margaret & Perfect Strangers worth a listen. I have this theory that all of RD's material gets better with age, it matures like a good wine, sooner or later it will turn up in an advert or a film and you will suddenly realise you really like that song.
on 6 November 2012
That the Kinks sounded as fresh and full of energy, while not sitting on their laurels after 25 years of non-stop recording and gigging is nothing short of a miracle and why they really should be given a whole lot more respect instead of fawning over the massively overrated Beatles.
That this album kicks off with a song in Aggravation that could almost be the industrial aggro punks Killing Joke, is followed by a stadium rock choon straight from the FM rock stations of the day, before a fifties style rocker, horns and a piano based ballad continue the flow shows the variety and brilliance that Ray Davies has always possessed. The lyrics are spot on as usual and the production helps to keep it sounding contemporary (not an easy thing with most mid80's rock either!)
The album is rounded off with three Dave Davies songs (admittedly 2 bonus tracks) the best of which is Dear Margaret (about a certain Prime Minister of the time perchance?) which rocks like you wouldn't believe. The guitar playing from Dave throughout is excellent with the required crunchiness you would expect from the man that some say invented heavy metal 9and if that's not reason to give him a knighthood then I don't know what is!)
At the time of its release it may - like most post 1970 albums - have been largely ignored, but it really is time to reasses this most important of Brit bands (no Kinks = no Blur, Pulp or "arty" Britpop!) After all what were their great 60's contemporaries like Dylan, McCartney, the Stones and the Who doing in 1987? It's best not to remember frankly.
on 2 April 2013
As the late '80s marched on, The Kinks refused to back down despite the music-buying public's general lack of interest. Although they were to be inducted into the Rock 'N' Roll Hall Of Fame the following year, no one in 1989 but the diehards seemed interested in hearing new music by the Davies brothers. Which is a shame because although UK Jive is far from their best, it's a respectable, enjoyable album which covers a lot of what makes them great - some punchy arena rock (Aggravation), some '60s-esque prettiness (War Is Over), some bouncy musichall (the title track)... Overall it's stronger than the previous album and proof that their records were still worth buying this late on into their career.