Best Concept Album Ever
Rita A. Lemay | CT | 12/14/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I dont see why when people are talking about great classic concept albums, some doesnt walk in with this album. I mean Tommy, and The Wall are great albums by great bands, but I just think the Preservation acts are the best concept albums ever. I mean it has everything and the story never gets boring. Its just so awsome in my mind its the best Kinks album ever made,and I've heard them all. I just love Flash and you feel so bad for him at the end when Mr.Black is turning him into a artificial man."
Hmmm... this is very very different
B. E Jackson | Pennsylvania | 03/26/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"but not necessarily worse, hence my 5-star rating.
Preservation Act 2 definitely feels more serious than Preservation Act 1.
The songwriting is different, the lyrics and the concept is more focused and perhaps better written. The concept that continued from the first Preservation album finally kicked in WAY more strongly here, and the results are that the songs are just... different.
In fact, I can't think of any other Kinks album that shares a similar theatrical style, like this album does. Preservation Act 2 stands apart from every other Kinks albums ever made in a BIG way, but not necessarily in a negative way.
Remember, it's not the concept that's the most important thing here- it's the songwriting, so if you love the Kinks, this album delivers with the highly memorable songs. Also, Preservation Act 2 honestly still contains a ton of honest emotions thanks to Ray Davies, but probably not as much compared to any number of other Kinks albums. It's definitely still *there*.
It DOES feel like Ray Davies took this whole rock opera concept a bit TOO seriously, and it definitely feels like he's showing off at times. Oh well, for one period in time, hey, let the guy flash his stuff. He has a right to do so when you think about it- he's too talented NOT to show off!
Alright, so the songs. What about them? Are they melodic? Yes. Are they memorable? Most of the time.
Even though it's hokey, I love "Oh Where Oh Where is Love?" The vocals that go back and forth between the male and female singers, the brilliant lyrics and the way they were implemented, and the vocal melody... yeah, this is perhaps the cheesiest song the Kinks ever made, but I can't help but love it. The same can be said for "Nothing Lasts Forever" which is more or less the same idea.
"Artificial Man" is a stone cold classic. I love those vocals more than words can possibly describe. It took a few close listen to really appreciate this song, and the female vocals are again suitable and appear in all the right moments.
"Salvation Road" is a continuation of "Demolition" from the first Preservation album. You'll immediately recognize a similar chorus in both songs. I'm not a fan of lifting the same exact ideas straight from other songs and albums, but oh well, I love it all the same. The verse melody actually sounds a lot like Mott the Hoople.
"Nobody Gives" does a solid job indicating the state of the world thanks to these lyrics doing a fine job explaining a major problem we all experience. This is yet another song that really gives the album a theatrical sound. I love it, but others may not (which is quite understandable).
"Flash's Confession" is flat-out AWESOME, "Mirror of Love" reminds me of Marc Bolan of T-Rex, "Second-Hand Car Spiv" has some weird, jazzy vocals that eventually make sense, and the rest of the album contains more or less the same kind of strong songwriting quality.
Hey, not everyone likes the whole rock opera thing rock bands were doing at the time, but when the Kinks are the ones attempting it, you mine as well give it a chance."