Is there a better group of guitar-banging, snare-splitting garage-band coolsters to pay tribute to the Ramones, really? The Fleshtones simply floor it on “Remember the Ramones,” to the point where there is scarcely enough time to fit in all of the words.
Peter Zaremba, caught up in a maelstrom of hair-flinging noise, is actually forced to sing “remem” and then, a breath later, “ber the Ramones!” It’s a perfect tribute to the no-rules DiY environment of the late 1970s — something the Ramones, of course, had a foundational role in building.
Zaremba cops to it (“the Clash and the [Sex] Pistols didn’t exist!”), even as guitarist Keith Streng, drummer Bill Milhizer and bassist Ken Fox set about joyously dismantling their instruments one howling verse at a time. There’s even a handily executed fake ending, and the inevitable crashing return.
“Remember the Ramones” arrives in advance of Wheel of Talent, due on February 11, 2014 via Yep Roc. This is the Fleshtones’ first full-length album since 2011′s Brooklyn Sound Solution, and their first new music since the Quatro X Quatro EP in 2012 — all of which were also issued on Yep Roc, with whom the Fleshtones have five albums since 2003.