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The Kinks announce Arthur deluxe box set with unreleased material

The Kinks’ cutting-edge 1969 LP Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire) is getting a four-disc deluxe edition re-release to commemorate its 50th anniversary.

The deluxe edition will feature a remastered edition of the original album in stereo and mono, bonus tracks, demos, rehearsals, remixes, BBC performances, and a lost Dave Davies solo LP.

The Kinks are releasing a special deluxe edition four-disc Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire) box set to celebrate the album’s 50th anniversary.

Arthur is a concept album about a British carpet-layer who moves to Australia after World War II. It was the follow-up to The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society, which is also a concept album that aims to follow a narrative structure.

Speaking of the similarities between the two albums, The Kinks frontman Ray Davies said in a statement, “the albums piggyback one another because they are joined. I’d already written the song ‘Arthur’.

I think I wrote ‘Australia’ when I was still living at 87 Fortis Green so it was quite early on. I remember taking it over to Dave, he lived in Cockfosters at the time, and playing it to him. We were laughing at the irony in the line, ‘Nobody’s got a chip on their shoulder’.”

The Kinks posted the news of the box set to Instagram saying that it will feature “previously unreleased tracks, brand new doo-wop choir recordings, a long lost Dave Davies solo album and a whole lot more!”

The unreleased Dave Davies solo album, of which 12 tracks will feature in the Arthur box set, was recorded during the original sessions for Arthur but was never finished. “One of the reasons the album wasn’t finished was because I felt The Kinks’ management and record company were forcing me too much,” Dave said in a statement. “I felt very comfortable being in The Kinks and it seemed fulfilling to be part of a band. I didn’t really want for more. I couldn’t see the point.”

The box set will also contain a 68-page book with essays about The Kinks, new interviews with the surviving members of the group, photos from that era and the script for a proposed Arthur play that never came to being.

Check out the previously unheard “Doo-Wop Version” of The Future below.

The Kinks’ deluxe Arthur 50th anniversary box set is set to be released on the 25th of October, you can find out more and pre-order your copy here, and check out the full tracklist below.

Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire) Deluxe Box Set Track List

Disc One – ORIGINAL STEREO ALBUM, 2019 REMASTER
1.        Victoria (Stereo)
2.        Yes Sir, No Sir (Stereo)
3.        Some Mother’s Son (Stereo)
4.        Drivin’ (Stereo)
5.        Brainwashed (Stereo)
6.        Australia (Stereo)
7.        Shangri-La (Stereo)
8.        Mr. Churchill Says (Stereo)
9.        She’s Bought A Hat Like Princess Marina (Stereo)
10.       Young And Innocent Days (Stereo)
11.       Nothing To Say (Stereo)
12.       Arthur (Stereo)

Bonus Tracks
13.      Plastic Man (Stereo)
14.      Victoria (Alternate Stereo Mix)
15.      Yes Sir, No Sir (Alternate Stereo Mix)
16.      Drivin’ (Alternate Stereo Mix)
17.      Brainwashed (Alternate Stereo Mix)
18.      Australia (Alternate Stereo Mix)
19.      Shangri-La (Alternate Stereo Mix)

Disc Two – ORIGINAL MONO ALBUM, 2019 REMASTER
1.         Victoria (Mono)
2.        Yes Sir, No Sir (Mono)
3.         Some Mother’s Son (Mono)
4.         Drivin’ (Mono)
5.         Brainwashed (Mono)
6.         Australia (Mono)
7.         Shangri-La (Mono)
8.         Mr. Churchill Says (Mono)
9.         She’s Bought A Hat Like Princess Marina (Mono)
10.      Young And Innocent Days (Mono)
11.      Nothing To Say (Mono)
12.      Arthur (Mono)

Bonus Tracks
13.      Plastic Man (Mono)
14.      King Kong (Mono)
15.      Victoria (Alternate Mono Mix)
16.      Australia (Alternate Mono Acetate Mix)
17.      Shangri-La (Alternate Mono Mix)
18.      She’s Bought A Hat Like Princess Marina (Alternate Mono Mix)
19.      Australia (Australian Mono Single Mix/Edit)

Disc Three  – THE GREAT LOST DAVE DAVIES ALBUM PLUS
1.         This Man He Weeps Tonight (Stereo)
2.         Mindless Child Of Motherhood (Stereo)
3.         Hold My Hand (Stereo)
4.         Do You Wish To Be A Man? (Stereo)
5.         Are You Ready? (Stereo)
6.         Creeping Jean (Stereo)
7.         I’m Crying (Stereo)
8.         Lincoln County (Stereo)
9.         Mr. Shoemaker’s Daughter (Stereo)
10.      Mr. Reporter (Stereo)
11.      Groovy Movies (Stereo)
12.      There Is No Life Without Love (Stereo)

Bonus Tracks
13.      Lincoln County (Mono Single Mix/Edit)
14.      There Is No Life Without Love (Mono)
15.      Hold My Hand (Mono)
16.      Creeping Jean (Mono Single Mix/Edit)
17.      Mindless Child Of Motherhood (Mono)
18.      This Man He Weeps Tonight (Mono)
19.      Mr. Shoemaker’s Daughter (Alternate Stereo Mix)
20.      Mr. Reporter (Alternate Stereo Mix)
21.      Groovy Movies (Alternate Stereo Mix)
22.      Lincoln County (Acoustic Mix)
23.      Hold My Hand (Alternate Take)

Disc Four – DEMOS, REHEARSALS, BBC & REMIXES
Part 1
1.         Arthur’s Journey (Introduction)
2.         Australia (2019 Mix)
3.         Home Demos Medley, 1969: Arthur / Victoria / Some Mother’s Son / Drivin’ /
Brainwashed / Mr. Churchill Says (TV Premix)

Part 2
4.         Shangri-La (2019 Mix)
5.         My Big Sister (Theatrical Version)
6.         Stevenage (Theatrical Version)
7.         Space (Theatrical Version) (Full Version)
8.         The Future (Doo-Wop Version)
9.         Arthur (Doo-Wop Version)

Part 3
10.      The Virgin Soldiers March
11.      Soldiers Coming Home (Instrumental)
12.      King Kong (BBC Mix)
13.      Victoria (Ray Davies & Band With The DR Symphony & Vocal Ensemble) (Stereo)
14.      Arthur (BBC Mix)

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July 31, 2019