Remakes, Remodels

A few weeks ago I heard the current Dead Boys (Cheetah Chrome, Johnny Blitz and some other guys) totally remade the first album Young, Loud and Snotty. The reviews on Amazon are pretty horrible, so I stayed away.

Once down this remakes rabbit hole I found out there’s a band who did a somewhat well-known remake of Rocket To Russia. The Amazon reviews for that aren’t quite as bad but the gist is mostly, “just listen to the real Rocket To Russia instead.”

The best of this ilk from a critical perspective is a band called The Vindictives’ remake of Leave Home. It receives Amazon kudos for not simply trying to re-do The Ramones and rearranging the songs, etc.

So my CD arrived yesterday – more expensive than the usual as it came all the way from Japan. Popped it in today and it’s disappointing. Valiant effort, I guess, but the singer is damn annoying. A combination of the male Rezillos singer, who sounds good in The Rezillos, and Darby Crash, who rarely sounds good ever, but that was kinda his schtick.

Oh well. Another experiment bites the dust. If you need anything it’s this album-opening version of Pinhead. Cute idea to intersperse Freaks audio clips. I made it about halfway through the album as I increasingly thought, “I really should be listening to the real Leave Home.”

Funny, if I’d heard this version out at a bar somewhere, I’d have gone crazy chasing down the source of this “cool” other version. As they say, often the chase is better than the catch.

If nothing else, it beats The National doing The Ramones.

KKK Took My Baby Away X 2

The National, a ponderous musical enterprise that some speak of rapturously and whose music I’ve never been able listen to for more than a minute or two before changing the dial, played recently at the Forest Hills Tennis Stadium. They covered the Ramones, local boys one and all, and led off with a dark story.

The Ramones demonstrate how to do it right.