Arthur (Or the Decline and Fall of the British Empire), often referred to as just Arthur, is the seventh studio album by English rock band the Kinks, released in October 1969. Kinks frontman Ray Davies constructed the concept album as the soundtrack to a Granada Television play and developed the storyline with novelist Julian Mitchell; the television programme was never produced. The rough plot revolved around Arthur Morgan, a carpet-layer, who was based on Ray and guitarist Dave Davies' brother-in-law Arthur Anning. A mono version was released in the UK, but not in the US.
The album was met with poor sales but nearly unanimous acclaim, especially among the American music press. Although Arthur and its first two singles, "Drivin'" and "Shangri-La", failed to chart in the UK, the Kinks returned to the Billboard charts after a two-year absence,with US lead single, "Victoria", peaking at number 62.The album itself reached number 105 on the Billboard album chart, their highest position since 1965. Arthur paved the way for the further success of their 1970 comeback album Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround, Part One.
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