When I read that this 40th year anniversary edition of this seminal album was being released, I wanted to cry because I can't believe it's been 40 years since I first heard this album on my Dad's stereo back in Whittier, but also because looking at the cover reminded me that all of the classic Ramones are dead - no offense Tommy. This album has been repackaged / remixed ad nauseum, but this time they finally got it fucking right. This version sounds incredible, sonically better sounding than the new Metallica or Green Day record or anything else current and hard rocking at the moment. Little nuances have been enbellished and brought out, like the 4 lines Dee Dee's sings in 53rd And 3rd, you can actually hear him crystal clear now, it's great. The back up vocals on Chain Saw? You can hear them now!! The jangly 2nd guitar track can be heard loud and clear now, which is a trip. The remix job on here is incredible, done by the guy who originally produced and mixed the album when it came out in '76. The new mix sizzles, it thumps, it crashes, it grabs you by the collar and shakes you around a bit. It's great. This release comes with both a stereo and a mono mix of the album, but to my untrained blown out ears there's very little difference in either. The mono mix is a bit warmer, the stereo mix a bit brighter. Big whoop. The real prize in this 3 CD release is the shit ton of unreleased demos that can be found on here, songs like Loudmouth, Chain Saw, I Don't Wanna Walk Around With You, You're Gonna Kill That Girl and What's Your Name, the last 2 songs weren't even released until the next album Leave Home. They also included the original, uncensored Nazi lyrics version of Today You're Love, Tomorrow The World, which is a bit unsettling to hear sung in this Trump world we all live in now. It's never good to hear Joey Ramone warbling about being a Nazi, it just isn't. Not then, not now.
Yeah, this is the album that started it all, that spawned a million mini revolutions against everything that people held near and dear, a big middle finger salute to the boring status quo of the time. This is the release that spawned a million bands in a million cities, acting like a Punk Rock Johnny Appleseed in planting the seeds of rebellion everywhere they played and bringing the love of real Rock 'N' Roll back to the forefront of the music scene where it belonged. I've always loved this album, but this 40th anniversary deluxe edition version of the Ramones first album has me in love with it even more, if that was possible. It's been in a state of constant rotation ever since I got it, and I can't stop telling every one I know about how crazy good this thing sounds. Just. Fucking. Wow. You owe it to yourself to scrounge up the money to buy this thing and own your own piece of music history. I can only hope that there are plans to do this to every Ramones album ever released. A band like the Ramones deserves nothing less than this grandoise revered treatment and handling. This is an absolute essential, crucial release to get. You will not be disappointed.