The Kinks (1968)
Master songwriter Ray Davies created hard rock and Britpop without hardly trying. But that was on earlier, patchier releases like Face To Face and The Kink Kontroversy. The Kinks – the most underrated band in history, and a close fourth behind the Beatles, Stones and Who for “best British Invasion group” – finally started putting together consistent albums in 1967, with Something Else By the Kinks. But this is the only one of theirs I own, and it nicely summarizes a lot of assorted 60s subgenres while also perfecting Britpop. Very, VERY good. It deserved to sell a lot more.
Like the Beatles, they also made some exceptional non-album singles and B-sides which are generously included on the CD reissues of each album. These great songs are definitely an important part of the experience.
Key track: “The Village Green Preservation Society”
See also: Face To Face – the Kinks (1966), Something Else By the Kinks – the Kinks (1967), Arthur (Or the Decline And Fall Of the British Empire) – the Kinks (1969), The Kink Kronikles – the Kinks (1972), Muswell Hillbillies – the Kinks (1973)