on 11 November 2013
It's the end of an era for CD's and the last couple of years record companies have developed these career defining boxes in an attempt to make us buy their records for the last time. That's ok by me, especially when it's done in a proper way. Universal have made excellent boxes called Classic Album Selection (The Jam, Thin Lzzy, The Cure, Motörhead and others) while Sony have produced the crap Original Album Classics (tons of releases with either 3 or 5 albums in each set with cheap and sad packaging).
This set from Warner/Rhino with Ramones is somewhere inbetween the two. If you already like The Ramones you probably got several of these discs already. As for the music I won't say too much as I reckon everyone is familiar with the Ramones by now. They made two classic albums in their prime (Ramones -1976 and Rocket To Russia - 1977) and the rest is at best somewhat uneven. This set gathers their first six studio albums from '76 to '81, sadly missing their excellent live album It's Alive from 1979.
Compared to the 2002 rereleases it seems to be the same mastering (which is fine) but more importantly it's missing all the bonus tracks. I would say this is a good thing as The Ramones tend to be somewhat repeating after 30 minutes... And it's also a much better of enjoying their original records. As for the missing bonus tracks I would say that only the ones from Ramones (1976) had any value anyway. But if you prefer quantity before quality you should stick to the 2002 reissues.
Also this set has no booklets whatsoever (contrary to the 2002 issues). What you get is teh 6 albums in thin cardboard sleeves and it's not in any way close to the quality of the Japanese mini-lp replicas. Unlike the Japanese releases (which I would strongly recommend instead) the records don't have any inner sleeves nor booklet (the Japanese releases have both the booklet from the 2002 remastered relases and a booklet with Japanes lyrics for those who might enjoy this).
So all in all, it's a nice clamshell box with cheap replicas (looks and feels like CD singles) and no extra booklet or information inside. Having said that, the box itself is cheap to buy and you do get all the Ramones you need, in fact you get more than you really need to be honest. If you are into The Ramones I would rather recommend you to get the Japanese releases (although they are somewhat expensive), and if you're not that keen you be better off with (disc one of) the Anthology from 2001.
It's a bit difficult to see who these product is aiming at except beeing a nice gift to someone who already owns most of the albums on vinyl. But it's a nice box for a fair price even though it feels somewhat unnecessary. A nice booklet or even a separate bonus track CD could have changed this.
on 30 November 2015
As a lover of The Ramones this is exactly what I was looking for, couldn't get better value anywhere. But there is one small thing, on the album 'End Of The Century' the last track 'High Risk Insurance' is actually spelt 'High RICK Insurance' Im not bothered by it, but it just made me think are these albums fake or unlicensed? Just a thought.
on 27 August 2014
If you've not got these, you should have. All six are stone cold classics, with Road to Ruin probably being the best. For goodness sake, this will cost you about the same as a Kasabian album, or somesuch. There is no excuse for not owning it, almost every track is a classic.