Artist: Dave Davies
Album: Rippin’ Up New York City: Live at the City Winery
Label: Red River
Release Date: 09/04/2015
“There is madness here!” shouted a spunky Dave Davies at a concert in New York City last November. What followed wasn’t exactly madness, but it was energetic and rife with classic rock ‘n’ roll moments. Nearly a year later, Davies has prepared a live album featuring songs from his two City Winery performances that chronicle his solo work and the three decades he spent with the Kinks.
The Kinks are well represented on this album, with hits like “I Need You” and “All Day and All of the Night” sparking approval from the audience. Unsurprisingly, “You Really Got Me” sidles into the mix as the album closer and default fan favorite. What’s nice about this collection is that it encompasses significant snapshots from Davies’ career. In addition to the Kinks material and tracks from Davies’ latest album, Rippin’ Up New York City includes “Death of a Clown,” his 1967 solo debut, and the audience-requested “Flowers in the Rain,” off 2002’s Bug.
Davies is far from the teenager who cofounded the Kinks in the early ’60s. His voice has lost its youthful glow but kept the earnestness that drew attention to the Kinks’ early recordings. As a guitarist, Davies’ skills are unflagging – he’s held on to the urgency that gave the famed “You Really Got Me” riff punch and used it to fill Rippin’ Up New York City’s opening with energy. What’s more, Davies sounds like he’s having fun onstage. Serving as a panoramic view of Davies’ career, this album is inclusive of his key artistic moments as a singer, songwriter and guitarist.
– Meghan Roos