There's only one Ray Davies. Who else could concoct the mixture of satire, emotion and rock and roll abandon that opens Arthur, Or The Decline And Fall Of The British Empire?
It's the work of a great songwriting intelligence at its peak, warming to themes of Britishness and the great ironies of English history on the back of The Kinks Are... The Village Green Preservation Society.
Victoria has all the key components of a great Kinks song: sharp lyrics, raunchy guitar work and a middle eight that packs a wallop. “Land of hope and the gloria, land of my Victoria,” sings Davies, pining for a long-dead monarch and her diminished empire as horns swell all around. It's enough to bring a tear to an Englishman's eye.