Day 127: Ramones – Rocket to Russia

5 Jul

Rockaway Beach

This makes no sense.  I got this freaking album (on vinyl) for my dad as a Father’s Day gift last year.  Yet, here it is, on the Dad Rock Tuesday list.  Weird.

Looking back, though, I guess I never really listened to it.  Rocket to Russia faced (and continues to face) the fate of many LPs in the Swole Ear household.  We like to look at them, and maybe even play them every now and then, but most of all, we just like to know that we have them.  This can be seen through our obsessively large collection of obscure White Stripes rarities and singles.  Most of them suck.  But damn, they’re cool as hell to us.

Anyway, I found it funny that it took a Dad Rock Tuesday to come around for me to listen to a record that I purchased.

It’s a shame that I held off for this long, too.  Rocket to Russia kind of kicks ass.

The only problem is, just like with The Clash, I have no idea what kind of music The Ramones make.

Well, duh, it’s rock.  You know how specific I like to get, though.

I mean, a common label attached to these guys and The Clash is “punk,” but after carefully listening to a few legit punk bands recently, I can safely say that Rocket is not punk music.  It’s far too soft, and frequently way too happy.  Maybe a certain Dave Chops will have some input on this.

Anyway, whatever this lo-fi guitar based music is, it’s fact that it’s really good.  Try to not nod your head to Rockaway Beach, I dare you.


3 Responses to “Day 127: Ramones – Rocket to Russia”

  1. Dave Chops July 6, 2011 at 12:14 am #

    I understand your reticence to classify the Ramones as “punk”. Joey was not mean enough and liked cheesy pop way too much. But this is cartoonish, melodic punk. A few critics in the late 70s thought the Ramones would own the airwaves. I think that they even convinced the Ramones for a little while. That they never sold many units does not make them less great. For shits and giggles, you should watch Rock ‘n Roll High School if you get a chance, if only for the part where the principal asks, “Does your mother know you are Ramones?” And you should definitely take two hours of your life and watch the Ramones documentary “End of the Century”. You will not hear Rockaway Beach the same way again. Finally, as long as you are listening to late 70s NYC stuff, check out that first B52’s album. I saw them last night and was thinking: odd vocals, upbeat catchy tunes, surf guitar – Swole Ear!


    • Yuanny Dollar July 6, 2011 at 8:40 am #

      Spending too much time thinking about the Ramones is a mistake. Let it wash over you and just enjoy. It is simple, oddly rhythmic and joyous (even when talking about beating on a brat with a baseball bat — a universal sentiment). I don’t want to spend too much time talking about why I like ice cream or why I like the Ramones. It is a simple, universal (almost, at least) pleasure.

      Herr Doktor Chops is right — check out B52s (you’ve done Ramones, Blondie, Police – people are pushing Talking Heads — just NO David Johansen in any form please). Hard not to like the good songs, and then you’ll have to listen to Iggy Pop’s duet with Kate Pierson (B52s co-lead vocals) and see if you can get over your Iggy aversion.

      • David Chops August 1, 2011 at 3:02 pm #

        The other day I listenened to Shonen Knife’s new album “Osaka Ramones” online. You MUST hear this. Crassic. Ramones lyrics are a huge challenge to the Japanese-speaker: “Hey! Ho! Ret’s Go!” I can’t fully express how great this album is.

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