PopCult Rudy Panucci on Pop Culture

The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society

The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society Deluxe LP (12″ album, 33 rpm), Box Set

The perfect BIG TICKET DAY gift for the rabid Kinks fan, devout anglophile or just anyone with a fascination with intricate and pastoral late-1960s British pop, The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society Deluxe LP (12″ album, 33 rpm), Box Set is an epic presentation of a sadly-overlooked classic.

THE KINKS ARE THE VILLAGE GREEN PRESERVATION SOCIETY 50th ANNIVERSARY SUPER DELUXE BOX SET – 2018 REMASTER is a lavishly packaged super-deluxe box set, part of the BMG ‘Art Of The Album’ series, which focuses specifically on high quality, bespoke packaged re-issues of seminal albums within the BMG catalogue, offering the highest spec audio masters and original artwork.

The set contains remastered original LPs, CDs of the remastered original albums plus a wealth of unreleased bonus material, reproduced 7″ singles, deluxe hardback photo book with comprehensive notes and new band interviews, and reproduced original memorabilia.

Somewhat overlooked upon its release in November 1968, The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society is now seen as one of the best British albums ever recorded. Created in difficult circumstances by a band who refused to follow fashion, it is an album of timeless, perfectly crafted songs about growing up and growing old, and the decline of national culture and traditional ways.

Enduring and unsurpassed, with its wit, sadness, quiet anger, regret and charm, it is generally considered the high point of The Kinks’ outstanding career and Ray Davies’ masterpiece. A calm, nostalgic album which feels like a sweet, hazy dream but with endless layers of musical and lyrical innovation, The Village Green Preservation Society‘s defiantly British sensibilities became the foundation of generations of British guitar pop.

The band’s sixth studio album was originally issued in November ’68 and would be the last album by the original line-up (bass player Pete Quaife departed in early 1969). Describing the album today, Davies says it’s about “the ending of a time personally for me in my life. 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.”

Counting all the CDs, and vinyl (12″ and 7″), this super deluxe edition is a staggering eleven-disc set. It contains a double vinyl LP with stereo and mono versions (both 2018 remasters) and a 12-track ‘Continental’ (Swedish) version on vinyl.

In addition there are five CDs of content:
CD1:
2018 Stereo Remaster, from the original HD tape transfers + bonus tracks of singles, B sides and original album related tracks
CD2:
2018 Mono Remaster, from the original HD tape transfers + bonus tracks of singles, B sides and original album related tracks
CD3:
Village Green Sessions – Including alternate versions, mixes and backing tracks, many previously unreleased
CD4:
Village Green At The BBC – TV performance track audio and band interviews, many previously unreleased
CD5:
Preservation, Sessions, Live & Demos – including mid 70s recordings, previously unreleased home demos, Ray Davies live in Denmark 2010 and unreleased track ‘Time Song’.
There are three replica seven-inch singles, reproduced in picture sleeves. They are:

“Days” / “She’s Got Everything” (1968)
“Starstruck” / “Picture Book” (1968)
“The Village Green Preservation Society” / “Do You Remember Walter?” (1969)

The box set comes with a 52-page hardcover book with extensive sleeve notes and new band interviews and includes essays by Pete Townshend and other writers. It boasts “special packaging” with debossed box cover, foil & metallic text, linen cloth finish and a ‘bespoke accessories holder’.

It also comes with a load of ‘memorabilia’. This includes a poster of Village Green LP inner gatefold; Empire Liverpool 1968 tour poster; glossy 10” x 8” photos from Hampstead Heath 1968 photoshoot; color press photo with reproduced band signatures; Bournemouth 1968 gig ticket; PYE Records promo card; ‘Days’ sheet music and more

As I said, this is the perfect gift for the rabid Kinks fan on your shopping list, but it will also appeal to anyone who loves well-crafted, interesting music. List price is upwards of $160 for this set, but if you shop around online, you’ll find it in the $120 to $145 range.

Check out the promo video: