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Ramones / It’s Alive 40th anniversary

4CD+2LP 40th anniversary set of 1979 live album

The Ramones reissue programme continues with the announcement of an expanded edition of live album It’s Alive.

Recorded at London’s Rainbow Theatre on New Year’s Eve 1977, It’s Alive saw the Ramones at full pelt rattling through some of the iconic selections from their first three studio albums. It’s Alive was eventually issued in April 1979 and managed to cram in 28 songs in a brisk 54 minutes (!) such was the economy and speed of a Ramones show.

While all four dates that the band played at the venue were recorded, this particular evening was deemed the best of the lot, and also ended up with the audience throwing the first ten rows of seats at the band. Amazing.

This new version features the original album – remastered – on double vinyl and CD, and now adds another three recordings from that UK tour across the other CDs, three of which are making their first release: Top Rank, Birmingham (December 28, 1977); Victoria Hall, Stoke-On-Trent (December 29, 1977); Friars, Aylesbury (December 30, 1977).

The new edition of It’s Alive is limited to 8000 copies, and follows the style and presentation of previous 40th anniversary set, coming in a 12″ x 12″ large format hardcover package with an essay by Steve Albini and original album producer-engineer Ed Stasium (who has done the remastering duties here).

The 40th anniversary edition of It’s Alive is released 20 September 2019 by Sire/ Rhino.

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It's Alive - 40th anniversary deluxe

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LP 1 – Recorded live at The Rainbow Theatre, London, December 31, 1977 – 2019 Remaster

Side A

  1. Rockaway Beach
  2. Teenage Lobotomy
  3. Blitzkrieg Bop
  4. I Wanna Be Well
  5. Glad To See You Go
  6. Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
  7. You’re Gonna Kill That Girl

Side B

  1. I Don’t Care
  2. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker
  3. Havana Affair
  4. Commando
  5. Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
  6. Surfin’ Bird
  7. Cretin Hop

LP 2- Recorded live at The Rainbow Theatre, London, December 31, 1977

Side A

  1. Listen To My Heart
  2. California Sun
  3. I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You
  4. Pinhead
  5. Do You Wanna Dance
  6. Chainsaw
  7. Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World

Side B

  1. I Wanna Be A Good Boy
  2. Judy Is A Punk
  3. Suzy Is A Headbanger
  4. Let’s Dance
  5. Oh Oh I Love Her So
  6. Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue
  7. We’re A Happy Family 

CD1- Recorded live at The Rainbow Theatre, London, December 31, 1977

  1. Rockaway Beach
  2. Teenage Lobotomy
  3. Blitzkrieg Bop
  4. I Wanna Be Well
  5. Glad To See You Go
  6. Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
  7. You’re Gonna Kill That Girl
  8. I Don’t Care
  9. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker
  10. I Can’t Give You Anything
  11. Commando
  12. Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
  13. Surfin’ Bird
  14. Cretin Hop
  15. Listen To My Heart
  16. California Sun
  17. I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You
  18. Pinhead
  19. Do You Wanna Dance
  20. Chainsaw
  21. Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World
  22. I Wanna Be A Good Boy
  23. Suzy Is A Headbanger
  24. Let’s Dance
  25. Oh Oh I Love Her So
  26. Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue
  27. We’re A Happy Family

CD2- Recorded live at Top Rank, Birmingham, Warwickshire, December 28, 1977

  1. Rockaway Beach
  2. Teenage Lobotomy
  3. Blitzkrieg Bop
  4. I Wanna Be Well
  5. Glad To See You Go
  6. Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
  7. You’re Gonna Kill That Girl
  8. I Don’t Care
  9. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker
  10. I Can’t Give You Anything
  11. Commando
  12. Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
  13. Surfin’ Bird
  14. Cretin Hop
  15. Listen To My Heart
  16. California Sun
  17. I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You
  18. Pinhead
  19. Do You Wanna Dance
  20. Chainsaw
  21. Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World
  22. I Wanna Be A Good Boy
  23. Suzy Is A Headbanger
  24. Let’s Dance
  25. Oh Oh I Love Her So
  26. Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue
  27. We’re A Happy Family

CD3- Recorded live at Victoria Hall, Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire, December 29, 1977

  1. Rockaway Beach
  2. Teenage Lobotomy
  3. Blitzkrieg Bop
  4. I Wanna Be Well
  5. Glad To See You Go
  6. Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
  7. You’re Gonna Kill That Girl
  8. I Don’t Care
  9. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker
  10. Havana Affair
  11. Commando
  12. Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
  13. Surfin’ Bird
  14. Cretin Hop
  15. Listen To My Heart
  16. California Sun
  17. I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You
  18. Pinhead
  19. Do You Wanna Dance
  20. Chainsaw
  21. Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World
  22. I Wanna Be A Good Boy
  23. Suzy Is A Headbanger
  24. Let’s Dance
  25. Oh Oh I Love Her So
  26. Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue
  27. We’re A Happy Family

CD4- Recorded live at Friars, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, December 30, 1977

  1. Rockaway Beach
  2. Teenage Lobotomy
  3. Blitzkrieg Bop
  4. I Wanna Be Well
  5. Glad To See You Go
  6. Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
  7. You’re Gonna Kill That Girl
  8. I Don’t Care
  9. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker
  10. Havana Affair
  11. Commando
  12. Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
  13. Surfin’ Bird
  14. Cretin Hop
  15. Listen To My Heart
  16. California Sun
  17. I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You
  18. Pinhead
  19. Do You Wanna Dance
  20. Chainsaw
  21. Today Your Love, Tomorrow The World
  22. I Wanna Be A Good Boy
  23. Suzy Is A Headbanger
  24. Let’s Dance
  25. Oh Oh I Love Her So
  26. Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue
  27. We’re A Happy Family

33 responses to Ramones / It’s Alive 40th anniversary

  1. Enrico G. says:

    Per-ordered, as the previous re-issues.
    Cheers from Bologna, Italy.

  2. Jim says:

    My first (and for a couple of decades) only Ramones album. It’s a great Ramones primer.

    This box looks a nice thing to have but I’m not sure if personally I need a second vinyl copy or three almost identical (but reportedly inferior) gigs.

    • Stu says:

      It was first Ramones album I ever bought and my first exposure to the songs on first three albums, the only thing wrong with it is no Swallow My Pride.

  3. Andy Hanson says:

    A great memory for me as I was working as a freelance photographer back then and covered the Rainbow gig for Sounds. All songs seemed to pass by in a flash as they do on the album but particularly the cone-head-enhanced-gabba-gabba-sign closer of Happy Family. I think I had fled the photo pit by that time, or whenever the chairs started flying over!

  4. Andrew Greenwood says:

    Ps: having looked at it I think the CD listing is accidentally copied from the live January 7 1978 Palladium New York CD which apart from not having Judy is an identical set list.

  5. Andrew Greenwood says:

    Judy is a Punk (1.14) is track 23 on my It’s Alive CD.
    Surely this must be a consistent typo.
    Anyway, I bought this on vinyl when it came out and later on CD. Although I’d love the other gigs, £60 is way too much for them for me (and I don’t want the vinyl having already got rid of it once)!

  6. Paul Taylor says:

    By pure coincidence I picked up an original in very good condition at a flea market this morning. It will probably be enough along with the other RSD and bootlegs in my collection!

    • Paul Taylor says:

      It’s also only two tracks longer than the Black Friday RSD album from the Glasgow Apollo 12 days earlier (I haven’t sat down to work out which two tracks!)
      The original sounds great so a remaster is tempting despite my earlier comment…….

  7. Charlie Waffles says:

    My friend purchased this at our record store in the mall around Christmas 1982 as an import. This was my introduction to the Ramones. I wish Rhino will release the original album on cd as a stand alone. I will wait for the price to drop. Too high.

  8. Øystein says:

    Weird to have all that space and not issue Judy is a Punk on even ONE cd. I wonder if they performed it at all four shows, and why I cant have it even for £65? Maybe it’s an error in the track list, if not they can f. right off.

    • Seth Hollander says:

      the tracklists on two other sites do show Judy on the 12/31 CD.

    • Uncle Meat says:

      Judy will be there, don’t worry.

    • Dean says:

      While I can appreciate concerns about one track being missing, I think your conclusion is over-the-top. Judy is 1:13 long, and I wouldn’t say the entire show hinges upon it being there.

      It goes without saying, it should be there, there’s no debate about that. I assume this is an error on the press release. That said, if it is indeed missing, then we’d have to assume it’s something to do with rights. Personally I expect it’ll be present.

  9. Dean says:

    Oh crap – in a post I just made, I said this one was over-priced and needs to be near £40. But I just noticed they have two slabs of Vinyl here. Wow, that’s a huge problem. Am I willing to pay £20 more for another slab of vinyl I’ll never play? Ouch. This is a waiter I think……………

  10. Dean says:

    Yikes, the price is currently way out there. I paid no more than £40 each for the others, and expect this to fall in line later. I’m sure Paul will put up an Amazon UK price when it’s available.

    I never intended to get any of these. I don’t do Vinyl, and the price was just too much for 3-CD’s. Then I saw on on sale, and it ended up at my house. Again, I was disappointed. Because of the Vinyl these are just huge, and since the cover is in hardback, they’re actually quite unwieldy and uncomfortable to hold. Not only that, the booklets are pretty thin at 12 pages or so.

    That said, I paid my money and got Road to Ruin, and played the CD’s. Wow. That was what won me over. The Ramones are just great fun. The remixes were terrific, improving on the originals in each case, and the extras usually being B-Side, alternate takes, and a live CD pretty awesome.

    Long story short, just this very evening I bought the last one I needed (the debut). So I now have all four. I guess I’m in for this one IF the price drops to the £40 mark. I’m not going to pay more than that though. Even at that they’re over-priced for what they are, imo. Then again, when something brings you this much joy, maybe it’s not so terrible.

    I don’t know if I’m recommending these sets or ragging on them. LOL

  11. EW99 says:

    My only hope for this is that the new CD version doesn’t fade out at the end of each of the original vinyl sides like the current one does.

  12. Prem Khanna says:

    I was at this gig. Support were The Rezillos & Generation X. When The Ramones came on the place went wild.

  13. Kauwgompie says:

    This may be the best live album ever but I don’t really need 3 other identical concerts thrown in. I figured they just remaster & remix this album but not expand it. I expected them to skip this album in terms of expanding and move on to “End Of The Century”. I don’t think I will get this box. May be for completist reasons on a deal alert.

  14. Brian says:

    I am really hoping there will be a single-disc version, as there was with each of the four prior Ramones 40th Anniversary releases. It would be a consumer-friendly move, given the virtually-identical setlists of the other shows included in the box, and Ed Stasium’s own admission that those other shows were “nothing special,” and were thought of by the band and crew as mere “run-throughs” for the New Year’s Eve live album recording. (https://pleasekillme.com/ramones-its-alive-by-ed-stasium/)

  15. Daniel says:

    Maybe my fave live album!! This was my intro to the Ramones and still have the orig 2LP! Interested to hear the other shows!!

  16. Robert Laversuch says:

    Got to be in the top five for live albums. No brainier-ordered

  17. David Bly says:

    What is very interesting about this album is that it initially was not released in North America.
    Is was released on LP and cassette in the UK, Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand in 1979, but was not released in the US and Canada in any format until 1995 when it was released on CD (it had previously been released on CD in 1990 in Europe, Japan, and Brasil)!

    Everybody said at the time that Sire were out of their minds, and the UK import became one of the largest-selling imports in history (to that point). So importers mad out like bandits while Sire just kept fiddling…

    • Uncle Meat says:

      And the European cd-version(s) sounded so uneven and muddy that the transfer to cd had probably been made from an old worn out music cassette.

  18. Chucky says:

    Is “Judy Is A Punk” missing from the CD version? It’s listed on the LP, but not on the CD (or nay of the CDs for that matter).

  19. Bernard Reynaert says:

    Is there also a cheaper 2cd version?

    • Tim-Meh says:

      I doubt it. Its following the format of the last four deluxe reissues although its a £30 hike for an additional slab of vinyl going by what I’ve seen on UK retailer’s sites.

  20. Jarmo Keranen says:

    I still have the first three Ramones studio albums and It’s Alive double in original versions. I have bought 4oth anniversary editions of the first three and this is a must buy too. Shame there isn’t concert in dvd!

    • 00Pablo says:

      There is a dvd of this concert – it is on a dvd called “Ramones – It’s Alive 1974-1996 – The Ultimate Double Live DVD” …near the end of the 1st disc.

  21. Tim-Meh says:

    In my opinion, the greatest live album of all time. These Ramones reissues have been brilliant especially the new mixes. I’m hoping Ed Stasium gets to do a job on End Of The Century and strip down the Phil Spector production. His Road To Ruin mix was incredible, like listening to that album for the first time all over again.

  22. Ian Hartley says:

    One of the best live albums ever ! I seem to remember John Peel playing all of each side uninterrupted- went by in a flash ! A bit like their actual shows. Love the format and care that is going into these re-releases as well.

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