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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 5 December 2002
If you never saw the Rezillos live, you can now (partly) redeem yourself with this album. They were the absolute peak of what was great about punk. None of your angst-ridden, political nonesense here - just a superb and exciting, pulsating vision of everything that was good about punk's high-voltage energy and very little that was bad. They deserved to be far more popular than they were and this album is the best way to catch a glimpse of a bygone age. It's utterly mad, the music is crazed and addictive. It's happy music, and that's why the Rezillos were sneered at by many of the punk cogniscenti. They were sooo wrong.
Don't expect to be put right about unemployment, faschism or anything else of whatever was bothering the spotted masses back then. Just clear the room of loose objects and prepare to move bits of your body very quickly. I just can't stop playing it - and to think it's 25 years since I last sweated it out with the Rezillos!
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on 3 September 2003
This is a great, fun, punk era album. There is a manic energy here that turns 60s covers into something definitely day-glo late 70's, that's on the edge of taking the p**s, but bears a certain tribute also.
"Flying Saucer Attack" and "Destination Venus" reflect the influence of B movie sci-fi on the band and adds to their comic strip image.
Short term stability seems to be a common factor in bands of this ilk of this time and we were deprived of a further potential classics by the Rezillos splitting up. But maybe albums like this are only this good when you get the right kind of lunatics together at just the right time, with just the right support - it is inevitably a one off.
If you don't have this album, buy it. If you have it only on vinyl or tape, buy it again on CD - there is double the amount of tracks on this version (live versions).
If you have this stashed away somewhere, not played for years - shame on you! Get it out, play it, sing a long with it, enjoy it again. Better still, buy this CD and enjoy it more!
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on 9 January 2004
Back in the seventies my best mate was a punky type of bloke, where I had more of a hippy leaning. This was one of the albums he played that I would probably not have bought or ever heard otherwise. I have just bought this cd, missing from my collection for years. Add it to yours now! Can,t quite put my finger on it, the bass is brilliant, lead guitar nice and choppy, bright and shiney. The drummer does well with what he probably had to work with, and the vocals swinging between Faye and Eugene works very well. I really don,t know another band of this style. This would sell very well now! Someone do something!
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on 4 February 2005
Ah yes - happy memories. Great energy. Great tunes. Sing along to destination Venus - more than darknness stands between us. I can't stand my baby - it's a real drag! If you can't stand the Rezillos, you wouldn't be reading this - so don't just buy the CD - see you at a gig. They're back!! Enjoy!
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on 6 August 2005
I first came aross The Rezillos when Peely played "I Can't Stand My Baby" on his late night Radio 1 show around August 1977 and I bought both of the albums on vinyl at their release.
Couldn't believe it when I saw it had been released on CD.
This is good time, tongue-in-cheek punk, no pretentious crap, just slam it in the CD player and enjoy it
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on 2 February 2006
I owned this album on vinyl many years ago and loved it, so I thought I would grab myself a bargain and get the CD. It is definitely an essential part of any retro-punk CD collection, possibly in the top 10 albums. But then I see all these reviews saying that the Rezillos were a welcome change from all the other bands who took themselves too seriously, and that these bands 'struggled' whilst the Rezillos thrived. Only the facts are that the Rezillos packed it in after a couple of years while the likes of the Clash soldiered on right through the 80's. So where is the evidence for that?
The Rezillos were great and brought something new to the table, but they were inspired by groups like the Sex Pistols, they owed their very existence to punk rock groups like that who were in the vanguard against the awful 'progressive' rock that dominated in the mid-70's.
And you didn't have to be spotty to care about unemployment either.
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on 17 March 2009
At least once a week for over thirty years I have played one or two tracks from the studio album, if not the whole thing, because it is utterly, completely, gobsmackingly, wonderfully marvellous. They're back, promising a new album (eat your hearts out, G'n'R, that's a REAL pause between albums) playing live, looking thirty years older (except Fay, for some reason - you're GORGEOUS, hen!) but sounding even better than they did back in the 70's.
At the time of release, the live album was criticised for the HUGE echo. They sounded much better than that live - but it's still worth a listen, 'cos they were (and are) a superb live band.
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on 20 October 2015
The AllMusic guide review of ‘Can’t Stand’ describes The Rezillos as ‘the finest fake Ramones the world has ever known’. Meant as a compliment it ignores the uniqueness of the band’s individual components and the result of the whole. ‘Can’t Stand’ was released in the summer of 78 after a delay resulting from Sire in the UK leaving Phonogram for new distributer Warner Bros. The album was recorded in New York at the Power Station in early 78. There may have been some problems with their choice of (Ramones) producer - a mention in band interviews at the time of him not being in sync with their vision. It was the engineer Bob Clearmountain who (allegedly) stepped up to the mark and did the the bulk of the job brilliantly in the end.

What you get are 13 tracks - four songs which were released in different versions as singles, three cover versions and six others. The debut single ‘I Can’t Stand My Baby’ is given a speeded up rerun here but can‘t compete with the uniqueness and raucousness of the original released in the summer of 77 on the bands own Sensible record label and one of John Peel’s singles of the year. ‘Flying Saucer Attack‘ and ‘(My Baby Does) Good Sculptures’ made up their double A sided debut release on Sire in late 77. The versions on this album are a shift up a few gears and much better for it. Whatever their alignment to punk and 60s garage The Rezillos needed a big sound and get it on this album. Try listening to the Peel session versions of tracks on ‘Cant Stand’ and see if you agree. ‘Top Of The Pops’ was rerecorded when they returned to London and given a lighter more melodic feel and the result was a hit single. The version here sounds incomplete in comparison. The three cover versions range from the wrecking ball brilliance of ‘Somebody's Gonna Get Their Head Kicked In Tonight’ which the band make their own to the pointless camp throwaway trash of ‘I Like It’. And in between ‘Glad All Over’ is professionally slickly done and could have made a B side. On the original Side One ‘2000 A.D’ is the Rezillos at their most compelling where 60s comic book fantasy meets a dystopian future. The band were always at their best expressing the dark side as seen through their pop art shades. ‘No’ is humorous while ‘It Gets Me’ (credited to bassist William Mysterious) is OK, nothing more. That leaves the final triple whammy 1-2-3 punch of the last three tracks on what was Side Two. ‘Getting Me Down’ is pure Rn’B in the 60’s sense of the word. It’s a close relative in sound and rhythm to Dr Feelgood’s ‘She Does It Right’, except in the Rezillos’ world things are not right but more likely wrong. ‘Cold Wars’ is a stunning three minute musical 60s spy movie and a high point of the album and the bands output. Over Jo Callis’ mix of searing punk and Shadows style jangly guitar Fay Fife intones a lyrically clever (but vague and inconclusive) story of East meets West that anticipates the eventual end of such dated subterfuge. Fife (singing rather than the almost shouting as she does on most of the album) seals the perfection of this track with a breathy melodic vocal, as does the already mentioned guitar work and William Mysterious‘ up and down the scale bassline. Then it is left to Eugene Reynolds to close things with the blood rush to the head of ‘Bad Guy Reaction’, a pulsating 100 mile an hour beat and a vocal going from cock sure cool cynicism to hysteria. Kudos to drummer Angel Patterson for powering this track along and his work on the rest of the album.

Other bands who released memorable debut albums in 1978 floundered on their second albums in 79 (Banshees, Penetration). The Rezillos never made it that far. They had shut up shop by the end of 78. The live tracks here from the Glaswegian date of their final tour were originally released as ‘Mission Accomplished… But The Beat Goes On’ in 1979. The release of this sub standard album can only have been Sire looking to recoup some of the investment they had made in the band. It is a messy unsatisfying testament to a great live act. Both Fay Fife and Eugene Reynolds expressed their unhappiness with the rush job and sound quality/mix in the music press at the time it’s release. Even the running order of the show was messed about with on the album. I am not going to waste too many words on it. The sound is no better than a good bootleg. The Jo Callis songs on it which never made it into the studio show no dip in quality from what went before with ‘Teenbeat’ in particular being a genuine (lost) classic. The BBC filmed at least part of the Hammersmith Palais show on the same farewell tour for the OGWT with much superior sound quality.

Also included is ‘Destination Venus’ and it’s B side recorded with then Buzzcocks and future Human League producer Martin Rushent. The CD clocks in at just over 74 minutes and so the original 77 version of ‘I Can’t Stand My Baby’ and the hit single version of ‘Top Of The Pops’ could have fitted on the disc. Both would have made this CD a bit more ‘almost complete’. The Rezillos legacy has been poorly served up on CD thus far. The John Peel sessions should be issued and there are supposedly excellent quality tapes of live shows that could be issued too as part of a deluxe remastered version of ‘Can’t Stand’.

Jo Callis was the songwriter of the band and in the 80s he would take his pop genius to Human League and co write some of their best known hits. His best songs here are the highlights but his guitar licks are the real star of the show. Like his fellow countryman John McGeoch who played in Magazine in the same era, he is instinctively clever, mixing styles extremely creatively but never letting his ego express excess. He is never mentioned as a great guitarist of the punk/post punk era but should be. Fay Fife and Eugene Reynolds vocals both separately and when interplaying also give this band another dimension that was another factor in making The Rezillos briefly truly greater than the Ramones. Fife and Reynolds would go on to form the more lightweight poppy Revillos who produced a run of great singles penned by the duo which begs the question why they did not write in the Rezillos first time around. They currently lead the 21st century version of the Rezillos (without Callis) who are closer to the all out sonic assault of the Stooges than the original Rezillos and have just released an excellent new album in 2015.
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on 12 April 2016
Can't stand the Rezillos 2016

April 7, 2016 had Caerphilly Workmen’s Hall, Wales in the UK welcome a Fay Fife and Eugene Reynolds led Rezillos quintet. The Guardians of Public Morality warmed up the crowd with a diverse selection of tribute tunes such as Pretty Vacant through Crazy Horses and on to 99 Red Balloons! There was also a little bit of theatre which was hysterical when a masked lady came on pretending to ride a bizarre wooden horse contraption!

Therefore, an air of joviality was present and that was the perfect platform for the headliners because The Rezillos fired proceedings in to unchartered galaxies! Yes! People if you are looking for the ultimate power pop punk party coated with nods to the 50’s and 60’s then look no further than this energetic Edinburgh enterprise!

Fay sported her usual colourful cross section of fashions with a nod to the go-go dancing scene of a yesteryear swinging decade. Meanwhile, Eugene arrived as if he had just come to conquer the local castle in his guise as a ‘Pirate of the Caledonian’. Meanwhile, as the gig unfurled it is clear that guitarist Jim Brady also plays a central role in whipping up the crowd. There is also a call to celebrate the rhythm section of original drummer Angel Paterson and more recent recruit Chris Agnew who steady the ship and enable their comrades to cut loose and press the green button for craziness.

A memorable night was on the cards and when the band kicked in to their 70’s anthems: I can’t stand my Baby, Bad Guy Reaction and Flying Saucer Attack the atmosphere went in to orbit. This is the 40th year of this band and who cares because it is still 110 miles per hour. Songs from the 2015 Zero album also feature and they include the title track, Groovy Room, Sorry about Tomorrow and Life’s a Bitch (with the fresh fare displaying a punchy panache!). However, the family favourites of the epic 1978 Can’t stand The Rezillos album are what the punters lust after and they are not disappointed as a master class in mellifluous motor momentum is offered via the likes of: Getting me Down, No, Mystery Action, (My baby does) Good Sculptures, It gets Me, Top of the Pops, Destination Venus and live favourite a reworking of River Deep Mountain High.

In between song banter from the band was comical and they really do their best to involve the audience. Fay’s skills as a trained clinical psychologist came in handy as a judgement was made on a lively bunch in the mosh pit-and, she was spot on as things got a bit hectic in the thick of the hard core arena!

The dual vocals of Fife and Reynolds mean that things are always chopping and changing with our eyes and ears doing double time as so much is going on both aurally and visually! This is a real concert! As a result the public wanted more and that is what they got courtesy of the seldom heard 1978 B-side 20,000 Rezillos under the Sea (which is a riotous reimagining of Gioachino Rossini’s William Tell Overture) and another old gem the colossal cover Somebody’s gonna get their head kicked in Tonight.

Well played The Rezillos! It was smiles all round as fans departed and it was most definitely a case of Mission Accomplished….but the beat goes On!

Yes folks, even though not all of the nuts and bolts of Can't stand The Rezillos were on show at Caerphilly many of its nuggets proved to be golden on this memorable evening-and, I love that album and have done so since 1978! It is always a joy to hear anything from this wondrous work and if you get a chance to witness this brilliand band live sprint like Usain Bolt to the venue! However, for now listen to this studio and stage recording and feel uplifted!
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on 23 February 2009
This is one of my favourite albums of all time. It's fast, it's fun and it all fits together better than Lego. There's no time to draw breath between each heart-pounding track and that bass playing has got to be the best ever recorded. It sounds as fresh and invigorating now as it did when I got the vinyl version nearly 30 years ago. It's great to have all the extras, though I'm not a huge fan of live recordings. Buy it and marvel at its brilliance.
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