It's always sad when otherwise great career musicians release inferior material, but when someone with Ray Davies's talent puts out an album as uniformly mediocre as Other People's Lives, it's real cause for concern. Do even exceptional songwriters have an upper limit on the number of amazing tunes in them? Everyone has his off days or weeks -- even months -- but Davies conceived and recorded these sappy slice-of-life sketches over a period of years, so there was no shortage of time to revisit the corny health/wealth rhymes and reconsider the feel-good homilies if he so desired. It leads one to assume he's either lost the ability to discern the padding from the profound or he just didn't give a shit, believing that Kinks fans would dutifully buy anything with his name on it. Either way, Other People's Lives is a huge disappointment.