Kinks Celebrate ‘Village Green Preservation Society’ 50th Anniversary With New Box
The Kinks' brilliant-but-underappreciated The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society will be commemorated in a special five-CD box set in honor of its 50th anniversary.
"I think The Village Green Preservation Society is about the ending of a time personally for me in my life," Ray Davies said in a press release. "In my imaginary village. It's the end of our innocence, our youth. Some people are quite old but in the Village Green, you're never allowed to grow up. I feel the project itself as part of a life cycle."
The Super Deluxe Edition contains stereo and mono remasters from the original HD tape transfers, plus singles, B-sides and other bonus tracks on its first two discs. The third CD documents the original sessions with alternate versions, mixes and backing tracks. A fourth disc contains performances and interviews from the BBC; the last contains demos and recordings stemming from the Kinks' mid-'70s Preservation concept albums. In total, there are 174 tracks, three of which have been previously unreleased; another 55 are in previously unissued versions.
You can hear one of the previously unreleased tracks, "Time Song," below.
As Davies noted, "Time Song"'s subject matter is still relevant in the era of Brexit. "When we played a concert at Drury Lane in '73 to 'celebrate' us about to join what was called the Common Market, I decided to use the song as a warning that time was running out for the old British Empire. ... This song was recorded a few weeks later but never made the final cut on the Preservation Act I album. Oddly enough, the song seems quite poignant and appropriate to release at this time in British history, and like Europe itself the track is a rough mix which still has to be finessed."
The stereo and mono remasters will also be available on 180-gram vinyl, as well a 12-track version of the LP that came out in Sweden. The record's three 7" singles -- "Days" / "She's Got Everything," "Starstruck" / "Picture Book" and "The Village Green Preservation Society" / "Do You Remember Walter?" -- are included with reproductions of their original artwork. A 52-page book contains liner notes, interviews, rare photographs and several essays, including one by Pete Townshend.
The box -- which comes out on Oct. 26 -- will include reproductions of various promotional material from the era, including photos, a tour poster and the album's inner gatefold artwork.
You can pre-order the box, as well as the vinyl and one- and two-CD distillations of the record, at the band's web store. The first 1,000 orders will come with a 7" single of "Time Song" / "Village Green" (Alternate Mix).