Ramones / StoogesPure Punk
Rhino revisits punk legends the Ramones and the Stooges with separate releases this week. The box set "Weird Tales of the Ramones" compiles 85 tracks onto three discs of music and includes the DVD debut of "Lifestyles of the Ramones." Originally issued in 1990, the latter rounds up the band's complete Sire music video collection, bolstered by six clips the Ramones made during their run on the MCA-affiliated Radioactive label.
Musically, "Weird Tales" pulls highlights from 1976's "Blitzkrieg Bop" through 1996's "R.A.M.O.N.E.S.," including such classics as "I Wanna Be Sedated," "Rockaway Beach," "Rock 'N' Roll High School," "Do You Remember Rock 'N' Roll Radio?" and "I Wanna Live." Also featured are the band's covers of the Searchers' "Needles and Pins," the Trashmen's "Surfin' Bird" and Love's "7 And 7 Is." The box also boasts a comic book featuring the work of 25 top graphic novel/comic artists.
The Stooges' first two studio albums, 1969's "The Stooges" and 1970's "Fun House," remain landmarks documents of pre-punk American hard rock. They are reissued this week with a second disc's worth of rare tracks.
"The Stooges" includes 10 previously unreleased cuts on its second disc, such as producer John Cale's original mixes of "No Fun," "Little Doll," "I Wanna Be Your Dog" and "1969," a full version of "No Fun" and three alternate vocal takes.
The bonus disc that graces "Fun House" sports material only previously available on the now out-of-print Rhino Handmade release "1970: The Complete Fun House Sessions." This includes demos for "Slide (Slidin' the Blues") and "Lost in the Future" (which did not appear on the original album), single mixes of "1970" and "Down on the Street" and three alternate takes.