Kinks Arthur.... 50th Anniversary Box Set Drops October 25th on BMG

One of the greatest of all Kinks albums—and a concept album about emigrating from the England to Australia that still resonates, Arthur Or The Decline And Fall of The British Empire gets the limited edition 50th anniversary box set treatment and it seems as if, like the album itself there's no filler, though for those who are interested in the album but not all of the extras, those too are available.

The set includes 4 CDs (whatever those are) containing the remastered mono and stereo album, singles B-sides, alternative track versions, new Doo Wop choir recordings (where's She-Na-Na when you need them), Ray Davies remixes and demos medley, theatrical and BBC tracks, and most significantly the "Lost" Dave Davies album. A total of 81 tracks including 5 previously unreleased and 28 unreleased versions.

Also in the box: 4 7" singles, a 68 page deluxe book with essays, new band interviews and rare images. Also, posters and photos and a Kinks metal pin badge you are dared to wear to family events next holiday season (my dare, not Ray's).

There will also be 2 LP and 2 CD sets plus "digital". The LP sources used are not given but chances are it will be cut from high resolution digital masters by who knows whom, and pressed at who knows where, so hold on to those blue Pye label U.K. originals that sound sooooo great!

The vinyl offering is available in various iterations: a 2 LP set, a 2LP and 2CD set and a 2LP one CD set—and all are available now for pre-order thorough the Kinks store.

Not available through The Kinks store and only obtainable here is this photo of Ray Davies thumbing through a copy of The Tracking Angle magazine. This was from back in 2005 when Velvel released The Kinks' RCA era albums on SACD. You can read the interview with Ray here.

jokerman's picture

The earlier Kinks reissues were not done very well. I assume this is going to be done with the same amount of "love" as those so skipping it.

Michael Fremer's picture
The Kinks mono box from last year was cut from the original master tapes by Kevin Gray and they sound amazing! To what reissues are you referring?????????
Vinyl-Head's picture

Ok...Must check if it is a Kevin Gray . Cheers

charliepress's picture

I agree that mono box is incredible. So I guess I'm wondering how we know that Kevin Gray won't be doing this set? I ask because I recall that it came as a surprise that the mono issues were AAA and done by Gray--no publicity leading up to that, nothing on the packaging, etc. When I found out, I bought a couple of the single releases, and then the entire box.

hi-fivinyljunkie's picture

The most recent including the Village Green box set vinyl were cut by KG. HD transfers from tape by Andrew Sandoval. This and the mono box sound great. Try finding originals for decent money.

jokerman's picture

Was the mono Are the Village Green vinyl reissue from few years ago different than what was on the box set?

Michael Fremer's picture
I have that set from "a few years ago" and not very good but the box was cut directly from master tapes by Kevin Gray and are definitive. And I have UK Pye originals mono and stereo....
jokerman's picture

Oh wow, going to buy it now!

jokerman's picture

You got me excited but I compared the 50th anniv reissue of Are the Village Green to the original stereo Pye and the original is way better...

Vinyl-Head's picture

Am thinking of buying a copy of the Kinks Village Green Preservation Society on vinyl. I read a review and was assured it sounds good and faithful to the original. Having been burned by 'digitally remastered' shite previously I am still a bit wary. So KG then is what I need to look for?

Roy Martin's picture

Always found it interesting that the Kinks, most "English" of all pop groups and "Arthur," most "English" of all Kinks albums, sold poorly in England.

Michael, I have a sense that we attended many of the same concerts in 1964-1969 (Stones at Cornell, etc.). I saw the Kinks at the Academy of Music in NYC for their American debut on June 19, 1965. The Moody Blues were the scheduled co-headliners but they had visa issues and couldn't appear. Most concert databases still list them but I can't for the life of me remember who replaced them. By any chance were you there?