Ray Davies -- Vancouver, British Columbia -- July 13th, 2012
Last Friday night, Ray Davies (main songwriter, singer and guitarist) from the now-defunct Kinks played a nearly sold-out show at the Vogue on Granville St in lovely Vancouver, BC.
WARNING: This review, while metal-related (see below) will be nostalgic and misty-eyed and may repel the more virulently metal zealots. You've been warned. And I may use the word "and' too many times and inappropriately.
So, how is that metal? Well, in 1964 one of the seminal power-chord riffs of all time was released, namely "You Really Got Me," with said riff being written by Mr Davies and released by the Kinks. Also, Ray's lyrics were often very much about social commentary (somewhat later in their career) which influenced punk and thrash metal lyrics as well. Metallica did a collaboration of You Really Got Me for Ray's collaboration album, as well as backing him at the RR Hall of Fame 25th anniv concert. Of course, Van Halen likely made YRGM famous for a lot of "younger" folks. Ray can still sing live however, unlike David Lee Roth.
Additionally, their album "One for the Road" hard-rock-ified a number of their songs. I was already into AC/DC, Kiss and Van Halen by the time this album came out so I thought it was a cool take on the earlier 60's sounding album my dad had got me.
It was a very nostalgic show for me, the first album I ever owned was some generic Kinks greatest hits album my (now deceased) dad bought me in the mid 70's. The Kinks and Kiss were basically the two bands that set the direction for me, musically, and while I got to see Kiss in 1979 (my first ever concert) I hadn't had a chance to see the Kinks or anything close until tonight. I'm 45 btw I am not ashamed to admit I got choked up listening to Celluloid Heroes standing 10 feet away from Ray Davies.
Ray is now 68, and pretty darn spry on stage, putting on a nearly 2 hour show, sometimes sitting and sometimes standing. His backing band is "The 88" who are young and energetic, plus he did an acoustic duo set with Bill Shanley. He is extremely funny and entertaining, and came out sounding somewhat drunk! His singing got clearer and less ragged as the night went on, something of a reversal for most bands
The audience was better than I would have expected. When I arrived, I sat in the seats (there is only a relatively small standing area in front of the stage, I don't how know Anthrax and Testament, two of my all-time fav bands, will fare there in Sept) for the acoustic bits. I was among the younger members of the audience, with many being in their 50's and 60's with a few that looked like they were in their 70's too!! I thought that was awesome. My wife thinks at some point I'll stop going to shows, but since Lemmy is 66 and still going, I see no reason the bands nor myself need to stop I saw Chuck Berry and Little Richard, both into the late 70's when I saw them about 8 years ago in LA, and they were great too. Except Chuck didn't have his guitar in tune, but that's another story.
There were quite a few people standing in front, and when things got electric around Dead End Street (I think) I headed up to the front. The people at the front were more around the 30-40 range, definitely some peeps in their 20's though too which was cool. I saw a few father/son/family people too.
My only real disappointment was the lack of Lola but at least he played one riff from it. Celluloid Heroes was the highlight for me, but Dedicated Follower of Fashion, Sunny Afternoon and Come Dancing were all great.
After Low Budget ended, it was exactly 11pm, so I assumed there would be no more. However, a large portion of the crowd stayed after lights and music came on, chanting "one more song" for at least 10 minutes afterwards. The main roadie kept embarrassingly gesturing "no more" and eventually we all left. Pretty strong response IMO!
If he comes back, I'll see him again for sure! Highly, highly recommended for anyone who enjoys solid rock music and a fun night out.
Setlist pulled from setlist.fm since I didn't write it down, too busy enjoying the show.
Acoustic with Bill Shanley:
I Need You
Lola (guitar riff only)
This Is Where I Belong
Next Door Neighbour
Dedicated Follower of Fashion
In A Moment
electric: (I think)
Dead End Street
Till The End Of The Day
Where Have All The Good Times Gone
I'm Not Like Everybody Else
Nothin' in the World Can Stop Me Worryin' 'Bout That Girl
Too Much on My Mind
A Long Way From Home
Victoria (verse, chorus and reading from his book X-Ray)
20th Century Man
This Time Tomorrow
You Really Got Me (slow)
You Really Got Me
All Day And All Of The Night
Unrelated non-metal nerdy nostalgia: The Vogue theatre is where I saw Star Wars for the first time in 1977, lined up for 4 hours with my (now deceased aforementioned Dad, and now deceased granddad, plus now non-deceased sister) which set me on my career path.
Also, after it ceased to be a cinema, the Vogue is where I saw the real SNFU for the last time. By "real" I mean both Belke brothers on stage together. I saw Marc and Chi (no Brent) in LA a couple of times and it just wasn't the same. The current Chi plus backing band version isn't even watchable IMO but poor Chi's meth addiction has taken its toll.
Last edited by hoopbuddy; 07-16-2012 at 01:29 PM.
I enjoyed reading this. My own father is very much responsible for much of my musical taste, and the Kinks are one of his absolute favorites!
Celluloid Heroes!! One from the road was the first tape I ever owned. Now I have it on vinyl. Still love it!!
" Capitalist by Day, Anarchist by night! "