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2023/4 Albums Thing 291 - Ramones “It’s Alive”

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And coming in at #2 on the list of the “Greatest Live Albums” is Ramones legendary New Years Eve 1977 rama-lama-ding-dong at London’s Rainbow (number one we’ll get to presently and number 3 we covered in the H’s https://www.whiterabbitrecords.co.uk/blog/read_204376/2023-albums-thing-147-hanoi-rocks-all-those-wasted-years.html).

“It’s Alive” (titled after a 1974 horror movie) is the pure distilled essence of Punk Rock & Roll. 28 songs in under 55 minutes, they fly by in a rush of Dee Dee’s “one-two-t’ree-four”s with the occasional intro by Joey. One song meshes into the next. It’s absolutely relentless.

Legend has it that Johnny only ever played down strokes on his guitar. Tommy barely gets time to take a breath on his drum stool between songs. Don’t ever tell me the Ramones couldn’t play. Simplistic it may be but these fellas were rock solid and very well rehearsed, this is a polished performance. These guys could play alright. Tommy would say later "We'd honed our craft really sharp by then. The Ramones' sound was basically the essence of rock 'n' roll. That's what we were going for”.

The gig itself was a star studded event, Johnny Thunders and Sid Vicious (with his new girlfriend Nancy, a former paramour of Dee Dee Ramone !) were in attendance and Elton John showed up dressed like Marlon Brando in “The Wild Ones”. The crowd ripped up 10 rows of seats and threw them at the stage when the gig was finished. Ramones-mania, proper old school mass hysteria.

26 Minutes of the Show - https://youtu.be/bS1xcb2XmOM?si=uDm2cpVcDyy_gqMm


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