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Pleasant Dreams (Expanded) Import

4.4 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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58th Annual GRAMMY Awards
Discover this year's nominees on CD and Vinyl, including Album of the Year, Artist of the Year, Best New Artist of the Year, and more. Learn more

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Aug. 27 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Rhino-Atlantic
  • ASIN: B0000691TH
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
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1. We Want the Airwaves
2. All's Quiet on the Eastern Front
3. The KKK Took My Baby Away
4. Don't Go
5. You Should Like You're Sick
6. It's Not My Place (In the 9 to 5 World)
7. She's a Sensation
8. 7-11
9. You Didn't Mean Anything to Me
10. Come and Now
11. This Business Is Killing Me
12. Sitting in My Room
13. Touring (1981 Version)
14. I Can't Get You Out of My MInd
15. Chop Suey (Alternate Version)
16. Sleeping Troubles (Demo)
17. Kicks to Try (Demo)
18. I'm Not an Answer (Demo)
19. Stares in This Town (Demo)

Product Description

In the context of the Ramones' long and unlikely career, Pleasant Dreams--their sixth studio album--pretty much marks the beginning of the end. By the time they began work on this album, the next generation of New Wave artists that the Ramones had helped inspire into being were beginning to overtake them, their creatively inspired, personally torturous one-album association (1980's superb End Of The Century) with Phil Spector had come to an end, and they were still yet to learn a fourth chord. Amazingly, if regrettably, they struggled on for another 16 years and 10 more largely useless albums.

Pleasant Dreams is not without its moments, however, as the Ramones wrung the final morsels of inspiration from their patented one-two-three-four ramalamalama punk ethic. "She's A Sensation" is a deft acknowledgement of their debt to such Spector protegées as the Ronettes and the Shangri-Las that would not have sounded out of place on "End Of The Century", and the wondrously titled "The KKK Took My Baby Away" is one of the Ramones' all-too-rare forays into sociological commentary. --Andrew Mueller --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Format: Audio CD
The Ramones' 1981 album "Pleasant Dreams" followed "End Of the Century," released the previous year. Produced by Phil Spector, that album was one of the punk pioneers' most curious releases and was later labelled by some of the band members themselves as being their worst album. "Pleasant Dreams" however takes much of the departures in sound that were found on "End Of the Century," and puts them back in tune so that they broaden the Ramones' limited sound, while still appreciating their punk essence.
'We Want the Airwaves' is a perfect example; it finds that Johnny Ramone has forgotten the three-chord buzzsaw guitar hooks that were so evident on their debut. The song remains one of his best guitar moments. The album carries on in suitable form with 'All's Quiet On the Eastern Front' and the grin-inducing but repetitve 'The KKK Took My Baby Away.' Joey Ramones' vocals are most flexible on 'It's Not My Place,' while 'You Didn't Mean Anything To Me' and 'This Business is Killing Me' are worthy additions to the band's lexicon.
As with most of the recent re-issues, "Pleasant Dreams" contains a slew of bonus tracks that are surely worth having, while not overbearing the album's original content, which is worth having even on its own. On the bleaker side, "Pleasant Dreams" was a reminder at the time that proved the acts that they had inspired (i.e., the punk bands that ripped them off) were now unrightfully overshadowing their punk forefathers.
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Format: Audio CD
Joey Ramone was in the mood to do serious bodily harm to the milquetoast acts getting radio play when PLEASANT DREAMS came out -- especially to Men at Work. At least that's what he told me when I interviewed him on tour.
We talked for two hours in front of a highrise Howard Johnsons hotel. Joey was funny in a dark way and very, very angry that A Flock of Seagulls and Men at Work were somehow getting the air play denied to the Ramones' brilliant pop-punk. And he had every right to be dismayed and worse. PLEASANT DREAMS showcases a band that had fully mastered the essence of great pop -- powerful playing combined with killer hooks and a let's-party attitude.
While all of those qualities are in abundant evidence throughout the album, PLEASANT DREAMS is remarkably varied. There's fizzy power pop (IT'S NOT MY PLACE, COME ON NOW, SHE'S A SENSATION), stomping punk (KKK..., EASTERN FRONT), spidery heavy metal (WE WANT THE AIRWAVES) and a big ballad (7-11).
How radio programmers could ignore all this really should be the focus of a United Nations investigation. Hey, if there are any radio DJs out there who went out of their way to NOT play the Ramones (like the ones at WQDR in Raleigh, NC), please explain why. The Ramones got the last laugh (they're in the Hall of Fame and you're not), but you caused'em a lot of grief and denied your listeners some great music.
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Format: Audio CD
A very gossipy liner-note booklet by Ira Robbins accompanies this re-mastering of the Ramones' sixth albulm. Rhino has been packing a lot of goodies into these re-releases, including, in this case, a picture of the original, and far superior, cover to this albulm. That sleeve art depicts a darkly-shadowed image of the band in much the same pose as on 'End of The Century'. It's a more apt image, by far, for this lacking-in-covers moody pop effort.
There are a number of Ramones gems on this albulm. "The KKK..." and "7-11" are classic Joey tunes. "All's Quiet on the Eastern Front" is the mature culimnation of the horror theme of the first four punk albulms. "It's Not My Place" is one of the most catchy, and yet complex, songs that the Ramones ever produced. "We Want The Airwaves" is top-notch rock, and foreshadows some of the brilliant excess of 'Too Tough To Die'. On the other end of the spectrum, Graham Gouldman's production on "She's A Sensation" and "You Sound Like You're Sick" will remind some of 'Century'.
The re-mastering brings out some of the subtleties of the pop production to good effect. After listening to this version, the older release sounds flat and washed-out, an effect that does nothing to compenstate for the restraint Johnny (the guitarist) shows on this albulm. The bonus tracks are exciting for the serious fan. Early versions of "Touring" and "Can't Get You" are satisfying additions to the albulm. The real treat, however, are the Demos left over from the studio session (although it's not nearly all the material originally recorded). Two are Stasium efforts, and, as one would expect, have a classic Ramones sound to them.
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Format: Audio CD
The years 1980-1983 were not kind to the Ramones. Struggling to find their niche in a sudden sea-change of musical direction known as New Wave, they tried to keep up without compromising themselves and the sound they were known for. Riding the high from their appearance in the film "Rock'n'Roll High School," and the accompanying hit of the same title, they entered into an alliance with legendary producer Phil Spector. Bad move! The resulting album was a dud (though I personally like it well enough), and the next two Ramones efforts struggled to correct their blunder by gaining back the fan base that had eroded.
"Pleasant Dreams" was the first of these efforts ("Subterranean Jungle" is the other). Unfortunately, this is/was the most ignored of all Ramones albums, which is a shame considering just how tasty it really is. Unlike the following "Jungle," which was dark and fierce, reflecting the Ramones' growing frustration, "Pleasant Dreams" is mostly light and well-humored. The Ramones vent some frustration here too, on "We Want the Airwaves" and "This Business is Killing Me." But on the whole, the album features some very mature, bubblegum rock. What I love most about "Pleasant Dreams" is its uniqueness. The album encompasses a style on to its own.
This is very much a Ramones album when listened to carefully, but on the surface, the pop influences stand out boldly. Perhaps it shows the depth of the Ramones' desperation, considering they recruited 10cc'er Graham Gouldman to produce the album. The Ramones will tell you they formed in 1974 to counter the slavishly proudced fare of bands like 10cc; and here they were, conspiring with the art-rock bassist and even dropping a reference to the band on one of the album's songs ("It's Not My Place").
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