The Runaways

Rating: 90%

therunawaysIn 1976, the music scene saw the introduction of the Runaways with their self titled debut record. This all American female band stormed the world, but fell short in America. Their music was based on Hard Rock, but the Punk movement seemed to embrace them. Either way, the music on this album is great. There’s a little bit of everything and that can be contributed to the influence of each band member.

The musicianship is really good. You have Cherie Currie on lead vocals. Her voice is awesome. She has a lot of range. As a front woman, she is full of energy. Then you have lead vocalist and guitarist Joan Jett. Her more Punk style attitude is clearly heard with her vocals. She too, is another great vocalist who has a good bit range. She can play the guitar and throw out lots of good riffs that supports lead guitarist Lita Ford. Guitar god Lita Ford throws out some amazing riffs and fantastic solos. She can wail on that guitar and bend those strings. I personally, think that Joan and Lita were the backbone of the rich sound produced by the Runaways. Keeping the time and pounding the skins was drummer Sandy West. I don’t think she gets enough credit as a musician. Although, bassist Jackie Fox was not on the album, all the bass parts were played by Nigel Harrison.

Musically, the Runaways have a unique blend of Hard Rock, a dash of the Blues, and Punk in their sound. The music was done with class and a whole lot of attitude. It’s heavy, hard, upbeat, and can stand its ground against the any of the Rock gods of that era. Just listen to “Cherry Bomb” or “Dead End Justice.” Their harmonizing vocal style compliments the music, listen to “Dead End Justice” and you’ll really hear how good the vocals are. This band has a great sound and can write some great songs.

With lots of sex appeal and attitude, the Runways rebelled against music industry where again, they saw fame in Europe and Japan. They proved once and for all, women can crank it up, crank it out, and write badass and kick ass music for the masses than can go head to head with any Rock band. Were they the first all female band? No! But, they would influence entire generation of rockers and punksters and that influence is still felt to this day. Three of the members, Cherie Currie, Lita Ford, and Joan Jett stormed the 1980’s and 1990’s with their solo careers.

Side A
1. “Cherry Bomb” 2:18
2. “You Drive Me Wild” 3:22
3. “Is It Day or Night?” 2:45
4. “Thunder” 2:31
5. “Rock & Roll”3:17
Side B
6. “Lovers” 2:09
7. “American Nights” 3:15
8. “Blackmail” 2:41
9. “Secrets” 2:43
10. “Dead End Justice” 7:01

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