This shenanigan has "Mosrite" written all over it
*special introductory paragraph!
*Johny Walk-Don't-Run Paulene

Applying the instrumental surf-spy style of The Ventures (REVIEWED ELSEWHERE HERE ON WWW.MARKPRINDLE.COM FEATURING MARK PRINDLE) to the catchy punk rock melodies of The Ramones (REVIEWED ELSEWHERE HERE ON WWW.CNN.COM FEATURING TONY RANDALL), The Ramonetures (reportedly the Phantom Surfers with Davie Allan on lead) seemed like a one-shot deal created specifically for me personally until suddenly three years later, a FOLLOW-UP album came out, focusing on the work of L.A. punk band X. So who can tell? Maybe this will turn out to be a lengthy project in which the Ramonetures take on the works of every famous punk rock band that ever existed, including Black Flag, Kenny Loggins and the Electric Light Orchestra.

Ramonetures - Blood Red 1999.
Rating = 8

Featuring an album cover that combines the black and white "person in leather jacket, ripped blue jeans and white shoes standing against a brick wall" Ramones debut cover with any given "sexy woman on the cover" Ventures album cover, complete with a band logo combining those of both legendary outfits, the debut Ramonetures LP was poised to make me ask if I could have my friend Christian's copy. He said "yeah" and now I listen to it every week on the DOT! I'm not sure how this sounds to a non-Ramones fan, so I can't address you folks right this second. Move along please. Perhaps to the Pearl Jam reviews or something else that might suit you better. *Makes superior chuckle to self, knowing that oneself is far superior to said non-Ramones fan due to nothing other than personal preference in rock music* What I certainly CAN address is the fact that the record features 16 Ramones songs played "surf" style, which is to say with a Beach Boys light "boom-ta-ta, boom-ta-ta" fun-in-the-sun drum beat, an almost brushed-away-and-forgotten rhythm guitar and a dominating lead guitar imitating the vocal line in between overused tremolo bar bends and down-the-neck reverbed "ocean wave" noises.

You would think it would be a Prindle damp nighttime fantasy what with me digging both bands so, but I have my issues - OH I have my slight, minor issues that are easy to ignore. My first issue is that the lead guitarist (Davy Allen?) relies TOOOO much on the tremolo bar bend gimmick, making every friggin song go way out of tune at the end of every line. My second issue is that, presumably in an effort to retain a fun, beachy mood, they only demonstrate the Ramones' HAPPY side - us fans know that that's only one side of this kickass hard-edged punk rock band, but this album's only MEAN songs are "Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World" and "Pet Sematary." The rest are cheerful happy fun like "Do You Remember Rock And Roll Radio?," "Oh Oh I Love Her So," "She's The One" and "She's A Sensation." If nothing else, playing these semi-generic happy songs in an instrumental manner calls out exactly how catchy the vocal lines are. Check out "She's A Sensation" if you own this album. Did you ever notice how lovely and wonderful that vocal melody is? I personally never did - all I noticed was that the guitar line was identical to 55 thousand other songs that I've heard throughout my life - most of them by the Ramones! My third issue is... HUSTLER! I bought the third issue of Hustler on ebay for only 5 DOLLARS TOTAL (or 5 DOLLAR, as they might say in some parts of the rural south)! That's cheaper than a NEW issue! And it's from September 1974!!!! And get this --- it REALLY SUCKS!!!!

As for the Ramonetures, if you're a Ramones fan, you definitely need to own it, but don't be surprised if you walk away from it thinking to yourself "Why the hell do I like such a happy, sissy band? Maybe I should rethink this whole `Ramones' thing."

What are your thoughts on cover tunes, btw? Personally I don't like the idea of a band wasting space on their OWN album for cover tunes, as I think it more important that bands introduce their own new ideas into the world. However, I'm very fond of the "tribute album" idea, where a bunch of bands take a break from their "serious" work to let their hair down (although I see you guys are way ahead of us! Although I shouldn't talk - I'm getting a little shaggy myself! Better not get too close - they'll think I'm part of the band! I'm kidding, of course.) and put their own spin on another artist's works. Some good examples include the Dead Kennedys tribute album Virus 100, a huge series of discs put out by Dwell Records in which unknown death metal bands demolish the hits of such non-death metal bands as Led Zeppelin, AC/DC and Ozzy Osborne, and a series of "Pickin' On" CDs, in which bluegrass artists perform the works of Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith and other non-bluegrass outfits. As for the Ramones, I am not at all ashamed to admit that I own every Ramones tribute I've ever seen, and will continue to buy more. For your info, the ones I own aside from this one include The Nutley Brass Play The Ramones Songbook (e-z listening versions), Blitzkreig Over You! (foreign punk bands do the do), Gabba Gabba Hey! (little-known punk bands do their hits), The Huntingtons' File Under Ramones, Screeching Weasel's Beat Is On The Brat, the Vindictives' Leave Home, the Queers' Rocket to Russia, the Parasites' It's Alive (in which they sing the indescribably hilarious INCORRECT song lyrics as printed in the original Japanese version of this LP), the Mr. T Experience's Road To Ruin, the Beatnik Termites' Pleasant Dreams, Jon Cougar Concentration Camp's Too Tough To Die and the McRackins'.umm. well, Too Tough To Die.. again. They're not ALL great, but I enjoy them anyway! Regardless of the Vindictives singer's irritating as SHIT muppet voice and the Queers' somehow managing to make Rocket To Russia sound even wimpier than it already does.

Oooo! And pick up Luther Wright and the Wrongs' Rebuild The Wall - it's a fantastic BLUEGRASS version of the entire Pink Floyd album!!!!!! It's fantastariffic!

Reader Comments

Ha ha, Prindle, you don't have Boris the Sprinkler's bad-ass cover of the whole End of the Century album and I do! That must make you really jealous, and not just because I also have their run-through of the entire Group Sex album as well, which they play fast enough to shave off a minute!

As for your collection of Ramones tributes, The Huntingtons are completely fucking worthless, the Vindictives one isn't ruined for me by Joey's voice but rather the fucking guitar solos, Screeching Weasel are only slightly less worthless than the Huntingtons only because there is nothing worse than Christian music, Jon Cougar Concentration Camp isn't worth talking about other than the members hitting the jackpot and ending up in the Queers and the Dwarves, and speaking of the Queers, they do a really wussy version of my favorite Ramones album.

Oh, and this album. I love it. While I'm not a big enough Ventures fan to own more than five or ten of their albums (*cough* unlike a certain someone *cough*), I guess surf music as a whole has had such a profound impact on me that I cannot justify giving this album anything lower than a 9. Sure, the whammy bar dives and jerks get really old really fast, and the surf drumbeat has been played out for about four decades, but Christ, man, this one kicks.

As far as actual cover tunes go, I think most of 'em are lame. Go see Not Another Teen Movie if you don't believe me. "Bands" like Good Charlotte, Goldfinger and Mest doing new wave covers. Excuse me while I puke.

There, much better. That being said, Poison Idea's covers album Pajama Party completely rocks my feeble little world.

You trashed Nokie Ramone in that write up.You are entitled to your opinion but you missed the whole concept of that project or even the spontainious simpleness of it's cheer.It's one of the best instrumental good time listens to be blessed with.I'll enjoy Davie Allan's Jazzmasterings and you could at least spell his name correctly.Understand?Get you some,understanding that is.

FIRSTARROWHEAD@aol.com (Mickey)
My first issue is that the lead guitarist (Davy Allen?) I guess when you can't spell the name of the person you are talking about you should not be talking about them? No taste for real music and guitar playing Davie Allan is a legend!

Davie Allan

Didn't you say, "However, I'm very fond of the 'tribute album' idea, where a bunch of bands take a break from their 'serious' work to let their hair down."? That's exactly what this is!!! The concept is totally wacky and original, and the result is a totally FUN album!!! The song choice fits the concept. Yes, all Ramones songs aren't happy. But this song selection concentrated on the ones that have the happy vibe because it fit the surf connection. Duh. Davie's guitar work is AMAZING. His tremolo bar technique is a unique aspect of his style. Your remark is like putting down Dick Dale for the way he picks or saying surf drummers play the surf beat too much. He was using a fake name and his use of the vibrato is one of the few obvious clues as to who this really is. There's also only one song where Davie uses a fuzz, which he's known for. This album is a real treat for Davie fans, since he's trying things he doesn't normally do and playing in a much different context than he normally records. It sounds like the FUN in this record just completely escapes you. Your loss.

catxdiablo@yahoo.com (Stacey Ray Tindle)
After reading Mark Prindle It's obvious he can't tell a guitar from lawnmower


Who gives a fuck what you think about Davie & the Ramones?

Talking all that player hating shit ?

Bitch you can lick the tailbone!

straight up the crack

Heres where I take a dump on your tongue on the way back

Davie Allan

Hopefully I'm not making a mistake in sending you an apology for you being attacked by a few of my fans?!

On major fan posted this portion of your Ramonetures review:

first issue is that the lead guitarist (Davy Allen?) relies TOOOO much on the tremolo bar bend gimmick, making every friggin song go way out of tune at the end of every line."

Some fans seem to get more pissed off about the mutilation of my name than I do (if that's possible!). It's the 40th anniversary of "The Arrows" ("Apache '65") and I still get my name misspelled 50% of the time!!!!!!!

During the last year and late '03: festivals in NY, Atlanta, Spain and SF plus a tune in an episode of "The Sopranos", a 2-CD 60's anthology ("Devil's Rumble") plus the two best reviewed albums of my career "Restless In L.A." and the first ever Arrows' Christmas album "Fuzz For The Holidays" (plus one of the tunes was in the "Christmas With the Kranks" film).

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* Johny Walk-Don't-Run Paulene - Blood Red 2002. *
Rating = 10

Chime right on in gayfer if you got shit to say to me about this 10. I don't even like X all that much anymore. Never get the urge to listen to `em. No urge to hear their filler or Exene's tuneless wailing. But this is GOOD! I'm fairly sure that Davey Allen is gone from this one, replaced by none other than X's own suave guitarist Billy Zoom who feels that tattoos are too trendy and drummer DJ Bonebrake! The result is gorgeous - all you Ventures fans out there, I would say that, where the debut Ramonetures LP is somewhat reminiscent of the Ventures' early stabbings at rock and roll, this one is more along the lines of Play The Carpenters or The Jim Croce Songbook -- not acoustic, no, but very full-bodied, well-developed instrumental versions of classic tracks from the first four X albums. There is no gimmicky attempt to even sound like a surf band this time `round - they simply perform beautiful, on-the- money, interestingly arranged covers of X songs with nobody singing.

Here come a few excited descriptions of the treasures that lie within: Often there are two lead guitars, or the lead is played in such a way that it emulates John and Exene's harmony vocals (especially in lead-off track "Your Phone's Off The Hook But You're Not"!). "The Unheard Music" features xylophone vibes where the vocals would be! Rockin' surf girls sing the choruses in "Johny Hit And Run Paulene" and "White Girl"! The bass and lead guitars BOTH imitate the vocals in "The Hungry Wolf"! And get this - track 10, which I think is "Dancing With Tears In My Eyes," though I could be wrong, not knowing that song by heart, replaces the vocals with a FLUTE!!!!!(or recorder) DID YOU HEAR ME??!?!?! WITH A FLUTE!!!!!!!!(or recorder)

Finally, after eleven extraspectacular X songs, they close with the most Venturey tune on the record, a short beach party take on "Year 1" complete with saxophone and crowd cheers, leaving the audience pissed off and screaming, "Hay - why didn't you play anything off that shitty reunion album Hey Zeus!?" My theory is that the next Ramonetures album will be a triple-album comprising that album in its entirety, along with a grindcore version of Meet John Doe and an a capella church choir run-through of Montrose's Jump On It, but with an entirely naked female crotch on the cover instead of that faggoty one on the Montrose album that's wearing all faggotyass clothes so you can't see any of that good stuff (testicles).

I'm telling you all, the reader - the first Ramonetures album can be passed off as a "Weird Al" Yankovic-esque novelty, especially to those who don't already love the Ramones. But a LOT of thought clearly went into this follow-up, with excellent multi-layered arrangements, lots of different guitar tones and best of all - just TONS of great, great songs! Whether you're an X fan or not, I think you should easily be able to fall in like with this record. So RUN - DON'T WALK down to your aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa fiddlefarts.

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