Picks and Pans Review: Ramones
Ramones Johnny, Joey, Dee Dee and Marky sound bigger, fuller and more polished than ever. Of course, the producer was Phil ("Wall o' Sound") Spector. Interestingly, too, the single to be released with this LP is the one cut the Ramones didn't compose, Baby, I Love You, which Spector co-wrote for the Ronettes back in 1963. In any case, Phil and the boys prove to be a happy combination of talents. Despite his vaunted polish, Spector hasn't mixed away the underlying rawness and driving delivery that made the group the first New Wavers to attract national attention. The Ramones, who come from Queens, have perfected a crazily eclectic accent. They say "banahna" as though they're from Britain and "rack'n'roll" like Midwesterners. What with their juvenile lyrics and cult movie hit, Rock'n'Roll High School (that song is included on this LP), the Ramones seem sure to crack the Top 40 this time.
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