The Best of the Ramones [Disky]

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Don't be fooled by the title of this 18-track collection from 2004 -- this is not a true Ramones "best-of," as it's comprised of several late-'80s/early-'90s tracks, as well as a smattering of latter-day live selections. While the Ramones continued to be an exceptional live act until the very end, the same couldn't be said about their studio albums -- by the aforementioned era of their career, the group's studio releases did not come close to matching the quartet's early classics. And latter-day tracks serve as the basis for The Best of the Ramones. Included is their best-known track from this time period, the title cut from the movie adaptation of Stephen King's Pet Sematary, but many of the other studio cuts don't measure up, especially several tracks plucked from their all-covers 1993 set, Acid Eaters (especially a cover of Jefferson Airplane's "Somebody to Love"). The live tracks fare much better, since they're all songs from the group's early/classic era ("Blitzkrieg Bop," "Teenage Lobotomy," "Cretin Hop," etc.). If you want a true Ramones "best-of," choose from the other single-disc (Ramones Mania, Loud, Fast Ramones: Their Toughest Hits) and multi-disc (Hey! Ho! Let's Go: The Anthology) sets on the market.

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