Friday, 5 April 2019

The Ramones - It's Alive (1977)

  

Recorded on December 31st 1977 at London's Rainbow, this was the the first live album to be issued by a punk band and it remains one of the greatest live albums of all time, capturing an iconic band at the peak of their new-found powers. Incidentally, I saw them the night before this gig, at Friars, Aylesbury. I was blown away by the sheer power and non-stop attack of it all. I had not heard the like.

The set comprises twenty-eight songs yet the whole gig lasts only fifty-three minutes, such is the breakneck nature of the all-out assault on the senses. The songs are separated only by endless "1-2-3-4"'s and a couple of verbal intros from Joey - "after eating our chicken vindaloo..."I Wanna Be Well..." and "this is for all you lonely hearts out there..." for "Here Today, Gone Tomorrow".

The first three songs make for a absolutely classic opening salvo - "Rockaway Beach", "Teenage Lobotomy" and the wonderful "Blitzkreig Bop". The energy is incredible. You had to be there, I guess, to really get it, but hopefully it comes across for anyone who was unlucky enough never to have caught them live. My one tiny gripe is that the album has never been remastered, so its sound is a bit dull and even with turning up is not quite as crisp as it might be. But that is not really too relevant  - it's The Ramones. Just turn it up - 1-2-3-4!!

TRACK LISTING

1. Rockaway Beach
2. Teenage Lobotomy
3. Blitzkreig Bop
4. I Wanna Be Well
5. Glad To See You Go
6. Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
7. You're Gonna Kill That Girl
8. I Don't Care
9. Sheena is A Punk Rocker
10. Havana Affair
11. Commando
12. Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
13. Surfin' Bird
14. Cretin Hop
15. Listen To My Heart
16. California Sun
17. I Don't Wanna Walk Around With You
18. Pinhead
19. Do You Wanna Dance?
20. Chainsaw
21. Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World
22. Now I Wanna Be A Good Boy
23. Judy Is A Punk
24. Suzy Is A Headbanger
25. Let's Dance
26. Oh Oh I Love Her So
27. Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue
28. We're a Happy Family

B+

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