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40th Anniversary 1 180gm
Deluxe Edition, Limited Edition
180 gram, 3 CD
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Vinyl, Original recording remastered, February 9, 2018
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This year marks the 40th anniversary of Ramones, recently named the "Greatest Punk Album Of All Time" by Rolling Stone, and certainly one of the most important and influential albums of all time. This masterpiece helped launch the punk rock scenes in both America and Britain, and went on to inspire countless other artists for generations to come.
To celebrate the Ramones' lasting impact, Rhino will release the ultimate tribute to the band's landmark debut, packaged in a 12" x 12" hardcover book. The 3CD/1LP set is a limited edition of 19,760 individually numbered copies and includes a sonically superior remastered stereo version and a meticulously recreated mono mix of the original album, plus rarities, unheard demos, and an unreleased live show - all produced, mixed, and mastered by the album's original producer and mixer Craig Leon.
In addition to the music, the set also features extensive production notes about the recording of the original album by Leon, an essay looking back on the band's early days by rock journalist Mitchell Cohen, along with additional pictures taken by Roberta Bayley, whose iconic photo of the band graces the album's cover.
Here's why this is the ULTIMATE collector's piece:
- Features a brand NEW MONO MIX of the album - the band had originally discussed recording the album in mono, but it was ultimately decided against. "I'm thrilled that now, 40 years later, we followed through on that original idea. - Craig Leon
- Includes a PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED 1976 SHOW from the Roxy, Hollywood
- Remastered stereo album
- Produced and remastered by the album's original producer Craig Leon
- Features PREVIOUSLY UNSEEN PHOTOS by Roberta Bayley - the album's original photographer
Original album remastered STEREO
Brand new MONO mix of the original album - PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED
18 single mixes, outtakes, and demos - INCLUDES 8 PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED TRACKS
Live At The Roxy, Hollywood, CA - August 12, 1976 (Set 1)
Live At The Roxy, Hollywood, CA - August 12, 1976 (Set 2) - PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED
180 GRAM VINYL
New mono mix of Ramones
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It's super loud.
That's basically it.
I compared it directly to my copy of the rhino deluxe cd they put out in the 2000's and the obvious difference is that the 2016 remaster is substantially louder. Granted, this was never an album of vast dynamic range, so the extra volume and the added compression that comes with it is not as detrimental to this album as it is to, say, "Exile on Main St," but still, the drums are now more compressed (it's very noticeable on the drums only parts of "Let's Dance") and there's a new, unpleasant, high frequency coming through on the guitars on "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend," which I'm guessing is also due to the raised volume spiking some of those levels.
I do wanna say that I'm not one of those "Loudness Wars" complainers who claim that this kind of thing automatically makes an album unlistenable. Thankfully the Ramones debut was sparse by design so the added volume doesn't kill the intent of the album (unlike "Exile on Main St" where the added volume and compression DID limit the breathing room between instruments and adversely affected the vibe of a record that pretty much needs the vibe left intact to work the way it should) and certainly doesn't make it unlistenable. But I do have to wonder why Craig Leon thought this is what the Ramones needed. This album already was a big awesome blast from the stereo, why make an enjoyably loud, in your face, album louder? This wasn't "Raw Power" with a sterile wimpy Bowie mix holding back raging music. Nothing about the production of Ramones debut hampered the power of the music in any way.
So that's it I guess. The album is really loud and a bit more compressed. It doesn't kill it, but I can't say it helps either. Again, this is a true, amazing, vital, superlative milestone in the world of rock. You SHOULD own this album. But if you have the Rhino version, you're not missing anything but unnecessary volume.
The first disc of course has the stereo mix remastered and a new mono mix meant to be like how they wanted it to have sounded.
Well the stereo mix I really don't see as much better sounding, and the mono mix is a major disappointment, as Johnny's guitar is just not as present or clear or having the punch that it does in the stereo one, an album which revolutionized music as we know it. The second disc has the mono Blitzkrieg Bop single and I only wish that the mono mix of the LP/CD had the same power as that does.
The demos are fantastic, but some of them have been released before on the previous issue of this, and more disappointingly, two demos from the 15 song one were left off - I Don't Wanna Go Down To The Basement and Judy Is A Punk. (Also the single they did with Marty Thau is too). Assuming legal reasons, but disappointing esp. regarding the incomplete 15 song one.
The newly released ones are incredible, especially the one of I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend, it's too great for words.
So then as soon as that short disc is over we have disc three recorded at the Roxy on August 12,1976. The shows are great but only one is new. That set alone makes this worth buying, but not at this price. It really depends on your budget.
It was also stupid to put the LP with it, for most people either want ONE form or the other now. Most people also do NOT want to spend extra on large boxes, which in this case is done SO cheaply it is just a fold-out with 3 circles on the right you store the CDs in the cardboard and it looks fine, but is not protective.
The album itself will easily slide out when you don't want it to, of its cheap holder on the left in nothing more than a thin black inner sleeve, which also houses the thin booklet, which has some really nice writing in it.
For me, this is just worth a single CD with the demos (forget the single mixes here - when BTW is the superior single mix of Rockaway Beach on Rocket to Russia ever going to come out? - well on second thought....)
No for me it would be the demos and then the second live show, forget the first one it was on Leave Home - or better,
as a 2 CD set with that and the stereo/mono mix in a slimline case with same booklet just smaller, and for around $25.
This has some absolutely indispensable music but the packaging and price are both let-downs.
Many fans view this as a cash-in, and it is, but it's so great, if you love the Ramones,
you have to have it regardless of the insane list price and the stupid packaging concept. (If they want to do vinyl like this I hope for those who collect it they issue it in a cover as it deserves!)
Very mixed feelings on this, which goes away when I listen to it except for the mono mix just being less powerful to me.
This will surely sell out; within a month or two I am guessing.
Truely one of the greatest albums ever and still holding up nearly 40 years later.
Most recent customer reviews
I'd rather like some booklet with it... it comes only the CD with the digipack, kinda poor