Long awaited, here are the first live recordings of the Ron Asheton-era Stooges. (Well, maybe Easy Action got there first with their "Popped" fan pack, the audio portion of which they just released separately as "A Thousand Lights"). And these are damn sure the only commercially available recordings of the lineup with ex-roadies Bill Cheatham on second guitar and Zeke Zettner on bass, recorded in a 200-capacity Manhattan club.
Contest the claim if you like, but there isn’t a better Ramones album than “Leave Home”, their second long-player.
Yes, the debut was retrospectively ground-breaking and a beacon for rock and roll’s shift back-to-basics, but “Leave Home” surely should have been the point where “punk” (at least as America knew it) crossed the line, converting from Cult Curiosity to Mainstream Soundtrack.
High-tensile guitars, off-colour humour, melodies and energy live large within its groove. Bubblegum, doo-wop, pop and rock bundled into the perfect musical package, married to an image of teen rebellion, leather jackets and shades. What the fuck is there not to love?
Alright, so it seems a little much to have to buy a set when you already have the fuckin' songs, just for one track: "Asthma Attack". Actually, the song seems to be in two halves, which is why this groovy racket is on a 7" single tucked into the front. Never was a 7" of a well-known band (these days) less likely to be a single. You know?
In the liner notes to Rhino’s souped-up reissue/remaster of the Stooges’ wide-eyed, dribbling debut, Detroit native Alice Cooper (whose albums with the original Alice Cooper band are in dire need of a sonic upgrade) confesses that the Stooges were the only band he never wanted to follow largely in part to Iggy Pop’s wild streak of unpredictability.