Sunday, July 29, 2007

the RUNAWAYS: (1987) The Best Of The Runaways

This CD is a nice overview of the Runaways, spanning four of their albums. Most of the selections feature Joan Jett as lead vocalist, which is not exactly representative of the band (Cherie Currie did most of the leads on their first two records), but that's forgivable since Jett is by far the most successful of the band in her career after the Runaways. Tracks 8-12 are from the album Waiting for the Night, my favorite Runaways album which was done after Currie had departed. That has never been released on CD, and it wasn't easy to find even when it was originally released in 1977, so this is your best chance to hear these songs. Cmon is from the even harder to find Live in Japan album, which has also never been released on CD (at least in the US).
The music is basically straight-up three chord rock, with some metal and punk influence. The Runaways are definately not a pop or "girlie" band, but if you like that sort of hard-driving rock, this should be right up your alley. Some of the songs talk explicitly about subjects like female sexual desire, all night parties, and life on the streets, so if that really bothers you, consider yourself warned. It was probably too much for 1976-1978 America to accept, which is one reason the Runaways never got any acceptance by music critics of the time. Joan Jett herself said in an early 1980's interview that the Runaways were "too honest", and I think that's a fair assessment. The influence the band had on subsequent generations of female rockers is pretty well accepted now.
There isn't really a weak track on this CD, but I like some tracks better than others. Cherry Bomb is the Runaways signature song; I Love Playin' With Fire, You Drive Me Wild, and Wait For Me round out the top four. Listening to this brings me back to my teenage years, when the Runaways were playing constantly on my record player. They still sound just as good today! Steven

1. Cherry Bomb
2. Blackmail
3. I Love Playin' With Fire
4. Born To Be Bad
5. Take It Or Leave It
6. Queens Of Noise ( Live)
7. You Drive Me Wild ( Live)
8. School Days
9. Wait For Me
10. Wassted
11. Don't Go Away
12. Waitin' For The Night
13. C'mon
pass - hangoverhard


Anonymous said...

Hangover, thanks for the runaways - your blog rocks.

Anonymous said...

Great post! forever in your debt...