Review : Joey Ramone - Ya Know?
Uber rockRight, onto '...Ya Know?' This is the second posthumously released record of "new songs" we've had from the king of the geeks and if I'm honest the first one (like many Ramones records later on in their years service) had its highs and it also had its lows and '...Ya Know?' is no different. There are some surprises on here, like the acoustic ballad 'Waiting For That Railroad' and, whilst it made me feel pretty sad playing it once the mandolin plucked in moments before the drums joined, I raised a smile because Joey always loved his pop music and writing unashamed pop melodies and, without a doubt, this is a well crafted tune and it's perfect 'tender side' Joey Ramone...and a pretty decent song to boot.
If you were expecting just a collection of ideas and demos, etc, then this isn't for you. This is a polished, balanced collection of tunes - proper tunes none the less! There isn't any point in being too critical because it is what it is and I'm just glad to have a bunch of new songs with his voice on. 'I Couldn't Sleep' is Ramones by numbers with a neat surfing melody that Joey rides into the sunset. What you get for your money is fifteen tunes; a couple of reworked Ramones tunes (but not like Dee Dee would do them) including 'Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight)' - I won't spoil it but you might get a warm pleasant surprise even if the intro is interesting and a reprise of 'Life's A Gas'. 'Seven Days Of Gloom' is noisy, as is 'Going Nowhere Fast' but it's the more tender moments that pluck your heart strings and perhaps make the listener look back and appreciate that one of the most distinguishable and influential frontmen ever also had a pretty good knack for writing great melodies and hooks....full text
Digital SpyThe Ramones' place in pop history was safe before the end of the '70s with their first four near-perfect albums. They were knocked off course by the Phil Spector-produced half-masterpiece/half-trainwreck that followed, but had they gone away quietly they could have returned a decade or two later for a well-received comeback. Instead, they made the "mistake" of never giving up, releasing nine more hit-and-miss albums (admittedly more miss than hit after Dee Dee's departure in '89), sprinkled with radio-friendly standouts that never made it on air. Ignored by most, the band were left preaching to the converted at their 2,263 live shows in 22 years.
But you don't know what you've got till it's gone, and Joey Ramone's posthumous 2002 solo debut Don't Worry About Me was a sweet, solid goodbye that got nicer notices than his bands' last few attempts. And against all expectations, Ya Know? is far from the cobbled-together demos and outtakes it could have easily been....full text
Consequence of SoundThe LP’s better cuts succeed because of how perfectly Ramones-ian they are. For the group’s trademark slacker jam, there’s “Going Nowhere Fast”, which pairs a guitar with the force of an industrial saw and Ramone’s nasal, ambivalent drawl. As the instrument destroys the world around him, Ramone rattles off the ways in which he’s caused his own downfall, never for a moment showing either fear or pride. Switching it up a bit, the band’s romantic– albeit awkward– side is demonstrated in “What Did I Do To Deserve You”. Ramone’s vocals remain almost the same, though a shred of hope shines through thanks to minor harmonies, vintage handclaps, and a guitar that splits the difference between grime and sentimentality....full text
Paste MagazineIt’s people’s insatiable appetite for nostalgia (and the money it potentially generates) that inevitably leads to put-on-a-happy-face reunions, half-hearted posthumous releases and, well, Hologram Tupac and Optical Illusion Freddie Mercury (sigh).
Then there are the rare occasions when an artist leaves behind material that should be heard. When Joey Ramone died from lymphoma in April of 2001 he left behind a cache of songs in various states of completion and fidelity. Some of them appeared on Don’t Worry About Me, released in early 2002, less than a year after his death. The collection was a sad reminder of not only what an incredible voice Ramone possessed, but that simple sentiments and even simpler rock songs could still carry emotional heft....full text
Uber rockThe industriously dark 'Mother Machine' is an epic sounding opener with its classical musical approach possessing the typical slant of a female fronted Euro-Rock outfit, being all heavy guitar riffage mixed with under tonal keyboards sounds. Another fine song structure is evident in 'Electricity' with its powerful gothic vocal delivery, whilst the piano led title track 'We Are The Others' whilst having some slight elements of Eurovision within it still maintains the tune above that particular slight and really does live up to anthem status deserved by the song's subject matter.
The gothic synth arrangement that controls 'Milk And Honey' reeks of Marilyn Manson and also the theatrical vocal performance brings the obvious references to Evanescence as all female fronted rock bands will do inevitably do nowadays, and whilst I'm on the subject of inspiration and influence for me 'We Are The Others' throws out more than just a few musical nods to the likes of The Rasmus and H.I.M. Now having uttered this seemingly damning dialogue the vast majority of this record is down to Delain's grandiose effort at originality and the commercial elements scream out on tracks like 'Hit Me With Your Best Shot' (no it's not a cover of Pat Benatar) and the quite beautiful 'I Want You'. ...full text
Bring the noiseDelain were originally founded by Within Temptation keyboardist Martijn Westerholt and frontwoman Charlotte Wessels, and they certainly have an anthemic sound. If you’re into bands like Halestorm then Delain are definitely the right band for you. The music is both symphonic and epic headbanging material, and Charlotte Wessels’ vocals are soaring and incredibly powerful.
Highlights of the record are ‘Milk and Honey’, ‘Hit Me With Your Best Shot’ and ‘Get The Devil Out Of Me’ just to name a few. The truth is there are no weak tracks on the album and the quality of the record is fantastic. Their style of music is probably an acquired taste, but once you get it, you really get it.
Keep an eye out for Delain, because ‘We Are The Others’ is their third and best album. They improve album by album, so if they carry on like this, we certainly have a treat in store for us....full text
This is not a sceneDelain are back with their third album “We Are The Others” this summer and it’s off to a cracking start for the band already. After being nominated for an MTV Europe Music Award as well as appearances at some of the biggest European festivals including Sonisphere, Wacken, Hellfest and Graspop, it is time to get back into the studio and write us another masterpiece.
If you love Halestorm right now, and maybe a bit of classic Within Temptation, you’ll be sure to enjoy this album. This is definitely one for the collection....full text
Indulge soundDelain have faced a rather long road to release their third record ‘We Are The Others’. Completed and scheduled for release over a year ago, they’ve found the record facing issues after Roadrunner was bought over by Warner Music Group, who didn’t want to release it. Battling on, Roadrunner stood behind their artist and finally the band can breathe a sigh of relief as their fight is finally over.
With the surrounding information in interviews, the title track proves to be the most prominent. Charlotte recently talked in depth to us about the influence the Sophie Lancaster murder case had on this track in particular (the interview will be live within the week) and when you focus in on the lyrics, it transcends all else. Dealing with her murder, based purely on her gothic appearance, they wanted to write a song for those who feel outcast. Infusing light pianos and their epic symphonic sounds, Charlotte sings, “If you feel mistreated, torn and cheated – you’re not alone.”...full text
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