The Brighton-based punks, The Ramonas, dropped their new LP yesterday. Punktuation’s Roger Kasper gives it a spin!
It’s the album we’ve been waiting for – at last, the ’70s revival is complete, and they’re back in Abba-solutely sparkling form.
No, I’m not talking about the new release from the Stockholm quartet, which has garnered one or two headlines on its release today (5 November). I’m talking about Brighton band The Ramonas, whose album hits you like an express train from the moment the needle hits the first groove (metaphorically, of course, as the vinyl release is not until next year).
After a few plays of ‘Haphazard’, you’ll have the earworm that is ‘Loser’ stuck in your head – ‘you’re just a sore loser; you’re just a bad loser.’
Originally formed as a Ramones tribute band – their live act is still split between a rat-a-tat-tat set of Joey and the boys’ covers and their own material – The Ramonas have experienced numerous line-ups but are now settled on Lisa, Maxine, Victoria and Camille.
Their vocals and harmonies are present throughout the album and give an elegant sheen over the hard-rocking riffs. And Camille’s power-drumming combined with Victoria’s banging bass makes for an awesome rhythm section.
In a Punktuationmag.com interview, the band referenced how some well-meaning but misguided male fans ask Camille: ‘How do you manage to hit the drums so hard?’
Cue ‘Insulted,’ where the band tackle sexism. Donald Trump and other politicians are on the end of barbs, too, and they also pick over environmental issues (‘Filth’) and mental health (‘Mortal’).
Victoria pays tribute to Dee Dee Ramone with ‘I’d Like To Congratulate Myself’, a nod to his famous Rock’ n’ Roll Hall of Fame speech from 2002. The song will stick in your head once it gets there. In fact, most of them will – if you’re streaming the album, give it at least five plays before you make your mind up.
Where the Ramones were famous for a short, snappy, 1-2-3-4 over-in-a-fantastic-flash repertoire, here the Ramonas are not afraid to tackle longer songs, with nine tracks more than five minutes.
Which brings us neatly back to Abba (their record label was Epic, fact fans).
So, if I had the choice between ‘Haphazard’ or Abba’s ‘Voyage’, I’d take a trip to the south coast of England all day long.
And where did Abba win Eurovision in 1974 with Waterloo? That’s right – Brighton. The connections never end! G-abba G-abba Hey!
Punktuation’s Rating: A Scorching 4.5 out of 5
Here’s how to order Haphazard by the Ramonas
CD pre-order – https://ramonas.bigcartel.com Digital pre-order – https://theramonas.bandcamp.com Spotify Pre-Save – https://show.co/HlILZgj iTunes – https://music.apple.com/gb/artist/the-ramonas/1154183949
Want more Ramonas?
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I’m Roger Kasper, 55. A punk since October 77 when the Stranglers rocked Top of the Pops with No More Heroes. Journalist since 1983 with stints on national newspapers and magazines and editor of local papers. I’m Gravesend born and dragged up I keep poultry, garden, run and generally make a nuisance of myself!