7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
The best album of the '80's by the Kinks,
This review is from: State of Confusion (Audio CD)
This album is a far cry from the unassailable genius of Village Green Preservation Society, Muswell Hillbillies, Lola vs The Powerman or Arthur, and the marvelous 60's singles. We are faced with the usual pretty horrible production values and a near-total absence of the exquisite subtlety of pre-'72 Kinks (other than Percy, which is perhaps where the rot set in and couldn't be stopped), but good tracks nonetheless. The best since '71 are this, Misfits, and Everybody's In Showbiz, the latter taking the honours despite tacked-on bad live album and muddy production. State Of Confusion is certainly the best album from 1979 to their finish in the 90's.
Though quality songs are scattered amongst the other albums of the '80's ('Loony Balloon', 'Give The People What They Want', 'The Video Shop', 'Do It Again', 'Scattered'), State Of Confusion has more than its fair share, and additionally has strength in depth. The Stand-outs are 'Come Dancing', 'Cliches Of The World' and 'Don't Forget To Dance', but 'Heart Of Gold', 'Young Conservatives', 'Long Distance' and 'Property' are also strong.
In common with Everybody's In Showbiz and most conspicuously, Soap Opera, Ray manages to program none of the good ones in the first 3 tracks, which is a shame for the casual listener who would have heard the first few and discarded. Stick with it and there's much to savour in many of the lyrics, plus strong tunes. There are also embarrassing bits, but those who have the ability (unlike every single critic in print) to see passed these, will unearth little treasures.
Pity the other review here about the album is so wrong-headed. Unbelievable to say that anything post-'72 comes remotely close to the genius of especially '68-'71 (though also many '65 to '67). What the other writer lacks an appreciation of is the subtlety and perception of Davies at that time, which he lost after 'Celluloid Heroes'. Nevertheless, genius gone, this album - State of Confusion - is as I say, really good.