Various - Brats on the Beat: Ramones for Kids (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Brats on the Beat: Ramones for Kids (2006)


Ah, tribute albums. There aren't too many tribute albums that leave a good flavor in people's mouths. What usually seems like a promising collection of songs by bands covering a great band normally ends up resulting in an album that's half-uninspired note-for-note covers and half-terrible re-compositions. Brats on the Beat is neither of those, but it isn't something I'm going to run to, probably ever, or at least until I have kids.

Sure, I'm not the target demographic for this collection of Ramones songs covered by singers from popular punk bands and a collection of adorable kids to help out. The album covers all the Ramones hits including "Blitzkrieg Bop," "Rock N' Roll High School," "Rockaway Beach," and a slew of other classics.

I had some hopes for this album since it involves some singers from my favorite bands, including Matt Skiba and Greg Attonito. Of course, I should have known that I couldn't possibly have really gotten into this. After all, it's the Ramones for kids. Weren't the Ramones simple enough for kids to begin with?

Most of the songs are slowed down and cleaned up versions of the Ramones' hits. They've got a friendly vibe and a mix of adult and kid singing -- I can't believe I'm typing this -- but this isn't fun to listen to unless you're driving a mini-van to school with a bunch of kids. The problem with this album is that it doesn't even work in theory. I suppose it could win over kids aged 2-5, but after that they're not going to be interested in kid songs (are they?) and once they are ready for music, you might as well give them the real Ramones, at least if you want to stop them from buying a Panic! at the Disco album. You see what I mean? Parents aren't going to listen to this on their own; they've got a small window where their kids might get into it, and then it's done. But I suppose that's the way it is with kids at that age -- you've got to buy new shoes and pants every couple of months, right?

I don't have any kids (that I know of!), so maybe I'm not able to see the big picture here, but as a Ramones fan and a fan of some of the bands represented here (Pennywise, Alkaline Trio, Bouncing Souls, Queens of the Stone Age...) I can't see myself listening to this more than this review requires. So I suppose if you've got to leave right now to take your child to daycare, stop and buy this CD. Otherwise there's no point.