Search Results for "Ramona"

Album Review: Ramona – “Deals, Deals, Deals!”

Deals, Deals, Deals is probably my favorite surprise of the year. I’d seen Ramona before, I’d even liked them before, but their Red Scare debut is something special. They have the songs, they have the hooks, and they have the words to make it more than just a party. I’ve been struggling a lot lately with what I actually I want from punk music. So much of it is trying to be something else—either a clone of a clone or a knowing throwback to when clones ruled the indies. Ramona is different. Ramona feels like a natural intersection of a group of close creatives; Deals, Deals, Deals is defined by songwriting before genre, and where the songs go, the sound rightly follows.

Which isn’t to say that Ramona is making music outside the confines of genre. This is melodic punk, or maybe indie punk. It’s bouncy and catchy and plaintive when it needs to be. The power chords are thick and chuggy and they form the blocky backing track to the band’s dueling vocalists. But, the fact that Ramona is a three-piece makes their music feel all the more intimate, listening to Deals, Deals, Deals, I couldn’t forget that these songs, as personal as they are, were forged from the fires of three close people. It goes a long way to capturing a certain tone, of raw conversations and comfortable clashes. 

The album opens with “Jet Fuel Can’t Melt Steel Hearts,” which features some slice-of-life relationship storytelling delivered with emotional gusto and supported by some meaty hooks. Where a lot of pop punkish bands lose their way is with their arrangements, but Ramona dodges this common misstep with thoughtful changes in their playing, specifically their drumming. I don’t often notice drumming in a song, because I’m a rhythmless philistine, but they use it here to great effect to control the song’s dynamic. “Jet Fuel Can’t Melt Steel Hearts” becomes a full-throated, danceable singalong with a positively insistent energy. 

On “Not Your Token,” we get to hear a really cool lyrical perspective as well as some Lawrence Arms-style duet singing between the two vocalists (who I wish I could name, but all the information I’ve found is the first names of the three members, and not what they do). The throat shredding call of, “I’m not your token, I’m a fucking person,” is the kind of punk rock line I live for. It boils down the sentiment to a single statement, direct and in your face. More structurally, the song is a grail of hooks, where the entire run time feels like a big singalong chorus. “We’ll make a difference, we’ll make it better, with or without you,” might just be punk’s logline for years to come. 

“Is This Emo?” is one of the other highlights of the album for me. It’s an incredibly frank, personal song about self-perception and it reminded me of that uncomfortable frisson I first felt from bands like AJJ and Against Me! It was that sort of confrontation via talk therapy that initially pulled me deeper into the genre, and it’s bands like Ramona, with their fearless navel-gazing, that keeps me there. Deals, Deals, Deals! is filled with these trauma-narrative-cum-pop-songs, and it makes it for an involving, resonant listen. 

The album ultimately has a message of hope, as “Mambo 69” concludes: “you can build your own family, be the person that you wanna be.” Deals, Deals, Deals! uses punk rock as a vehicle for self-improvement, as a means to stare the bullshit in the eye and see it for what it is. It’s about acknowledging the worst and then striving for the best. Ramona accomplishes their goals with the finesse of scene veterans, and they do it with some of the best music I’ve heard all year. 



Ramona (Punk) share new video for “Not Your Token”

Seattle punk act Ramona have released a video for their song “Not Your Token”. This is the first video for the West Coast three-piece. The video begins with six folks ready to square off in a donnybrook, only to trade in the angst for some flippers, pinball flippers. An impromptu pinball tournament ensues and peace reigns supreme. The song comes from the band’s upcoming album Deals, Deals, Deals! which is set to be released June 2nd through Red ScareRamona will also be heading out on the road with Teenage Bottlerocket as well as touring with Elway and Sam Russo towards the end of the summer.

You can check out the new video below, as well as a full list of upcoming shows.

This is the first new music from Ramona since their split with the Hard Sulks back in 2017. If you’re a fan of Teenage Bottlerocket or Punchline 13 these guys are very similar. 



Red Scare announces Red Scare West Coast Roast tour

California punk label Red Scare Industries has announced some upcoming tour dates featuring Elway, Ramona, and Sam Russo.  You can check out all the dates and locations below.



Red Scare to release new Ramona and Billy Liar albums in June.

Red Scare has a busy summer coming up, as they’ve announced they will be releasing new albums from both Seattle-based punk band Ramona and Scottish folk punk Billy Liar this June.  We’ll keep you updated as songs premiere, but for now, you can check out the cover art, track listings, and release dates for these upcoming albums below.



Top Drawer Records announce “14 Soda Punx” compilation, “Seattle Pop Punk Festival”

In 1993, Sicko front man Ean Hernandez’ label, Top Drawer Records released ’13 Soda Punx’, with Fastbacks, Sicko, Huevos Rancheros, Old Man, Model Rockets, Mr T Experience, Stand GT, The Stuppes, Young Fresh Fellows, The Primate 5, Bum, Cub, and The Smugglers.

Now 23 years later, they have announced the 2nd edition: ‘14 Soda Punx, with a mountain of Seattle based pop-punk bands such as Success, Burn Burn Burn, Ramona and more. The LP will be released and shipped following the 2 day Seattle Pop-Punk Music Festival on January 19 and 20 at the Highline in Seattle. To coincide with the release of the LP, Top Drawer Records will host a two-day music festival.

You can check out the compilation and festival information below.

You can pre-order the compilation on vinyl here.



Tiny Dragon releases NW Punk​.​.​.​Whatever #2

Seattle based label Tiny Dragon has released the second instalment of its NW Punk​.​.​.​Whatever splits. #2 again has 4 cool bands each contributing a song. Check out songs from Ramona, Choke The Pope, No Guts and Ol’ Doris below.

The first NW Punk​.​.​.​Whatever split came out in December last year.



Rebuilder and Ramona team up for West Coast tour

Hard-working Boston punk band Rebuilder are headed out west for their first-ever tour of the left coast. The tour kicks off October 4th in Seattle and wraps up 11 days later in Vegas (livers be damned). Along for the ride will be Seattle-based punk band Ramona. In spite of making their hometowns on opposite sides of the country, the two bands actually share a family tree branch: Rebuilder’s Sal Medrano and Ramona’s Diego Medrano are, as you might imagine, brothers.

Anyway, check out the full rundown below. No word yet on new music from Rebuilder or Ramona camps, but stay tuned. Rebuilder’s last album, “Rock and Roll in America,” was released last year on Panic State.