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Classic Album Review: Dave Davies | Bug

The former Kinks guitarist stays true to himself on his first solo release in decades.

This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Forget Noel and Liam Gallagher of Oasis; nearly 40 years ago, Ray and Dave Davies of The Kinks were rock’s original sibling rivals.

Of course, Noel can take comfort in the fact that he writes his band’s hits, whereas Dave has always laboured frustratingly in the shadow of his more talented (and domineering) older brother. Of course, that hasn’t stopped Dave from making occasionally interesting — if inconsistent and underwhelming — solo albums.

Bug, his seventh release and first studio effort in nearly two decades, generally adheres to the retro guitar-rock and power-pop template Dave has worked for years. And as with all his albums, you quickly realize three things: 1) He still has that fiercely crunching, instantly identifiable guitar sound that was such a vital part of The Kinks; 2) His voice, which is slightly deeper and less nasal than Ray’s, is surprisingly strong; 3) No matter how hard he tries, he’ll never be half the songwriter his brother is. No wonder he’s bugged.

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