Six Ramones Songs I Could Live Without
The Ramones were a pretty amazing band (#1 in my book), but they had their share of musical turds. Here now, six of those turds and my thoughts on them:
“High Risk Insurance” – The final track from End Of The Century. This song just sounds like a couple of cool riffs they threw together at the last minute because they needed an even number of songs on the album. Immediately following the mini-epic “All The Way,” which really should have been End Of The Century’s closer, “High Risk Insurance” comes off as a pretty weak afterthought. For me, the only redeeming part is when Joey forcefully sings, “I got no love for the enemy nation!” So patriotic, that Joey.
“Planet Earth 1988” – The clumsy environmental “message” song from Too Tough To Die. The lyrics, melody, and main guitar part are all really grating. I feel like maybe Dee Dee told the rest of the band they could only have “Wart Hog” and “Howling At The Moon” if they agreed to put his dippy rain forest tune on the album. Guess Johnny lost that round of Paper, Rock, Scissors.
“She Belongs To Me” – An overblown pop rock cream puff that sounds exactly like the type of shit the Ramones set out to destroy when they started in ’74. Twelve years later, they were so desperate for a hit they’d do anything. I really have a severe distaste for Animal Boy in its entirety. The production is so bad. Sounds like they recorded it with a piece of string and two tin cans.
“Learn To Listen” – Joey, what are you, my grandmother? Next thing you’re gonna be criticizing my table manners.
“I Won’t Let It Happen” – Just another half-assed Ramones ballad from the later years.
“Scattergun” – Why the hell did C.J. sing so much on Adios Amigos? It was the last Ramones album. Joey should have been all up on every song like a shark on a whale carcass. Anyway, this was C.J.’s throwaway attempt at a “hard edged” Dee Dee-style love song comparing a hot chick (probably Marky’s niece) to a firearm. The melody is pretty obnoxious. It’s like cut-rate Rancid slowed way the hell down. To paraphrase Ralph Wiggum, this song is cold and hurty.
I was going to link up recordings of these songs on YouTube, but they’re just too gross to inflict upon anyone who doesn’t have to hear them. You ‘Mones fans know what I’m talking about. Blaaarg. Well, nobody’s perfect. I’m sure even Abe Lincoln farted sometimes.