Rippin' Up New York City: Live At City Winery NYC

Dave Davies

Red River, 2015

REVIEW BY: David Bowling


Dave Davies is one of those rock and roll survivors. He spent nearly three tumultuous decades as the lead guitarist for The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Kinks. In 1964, he created one of the most famous guitar riffs in rock and roll history with his opening chords to “You Really Got Me.” He is now fully recovered from a major stroke that left him unable to play the guitar and sing for a while. Proof of his survival is his new live album, my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Rippin’ Up New York City.

He and his backing band – guitarist Jonathan Lea, drummer Dennis Diken, bassist/keyboardist Tom Currier, and backing vocalist Rebecca Wilson – played two shows at the New York City Winery on November 24th and 25th, 2014, and the tape was running.

The 15 tracks here are both powerful and intimate as Davies moves back and forth from electric rockers to sensitive acoustic pieces. The concert, and the disc itself, was constructed well as they build toward a trio of Kinks songs finale. “Where Have All The Good Times Gone,” “All Day And All Of The Night,” and “You Really Got Me” are explosive and quickly show why Davies has influenced two generations of guitarists.

He reaches back to the beginning of his solo career for a smooth rendition of 1967’s “Death Of A Clown.” While his solo output may be more reserved than much of the music of the Kinks, songs such as “Creepin’ Jean,” “ “Susannah’s Still Alive,” “Flowers In The Rain,” “Livin’ On A Thin Line,” and “Rippin’ Up Time” have some bite beneath the textures.

Davies has completely recovered since his medical issues, and his technical ability on the guitar remains excellent. The sound is clean, with a good mix between the band and audience.

It’s good to have Dave Davies back in circulation. He will be touring on the East Coast of the United States during October. If Rippin’ It Up In New York City is any indication, it may be a good time to catch a true legend in action.

Rating: B+

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