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Posted by on Feb 8, 2023 in Music, News, Powerpop |

Ryan Allen – The Last Rock Band

Ryan Allen – The Last Rock Band

Will rock ’n’ roll go the way of the dinosaur? Ryan Allen investigates this question on his latest full length effort. The Last Rock Band, A Rock ’n’ Roll Concept Album answers that question by its mere existence (more on that later). But for now, let’s stick to specifics.

Allen lists a good number of influences in his description of the album. However, the three that stand out to me are (in this order) The Who, The Ramones and Bowie. You’ll hear Tommy era Who in the opening track, “The Last Rock Band”. And “Start a Band” bares more than a passing resemblance to “I Can’t Explain”. That said, it is by no means derivative. 

The Ramones had a way of boiling down songs to their essence – early songs were three chords and a one or two word chant that pinheads in the audience could remember and yell on cue. “Like The Ramones” uses this formula to perfection. Not unlike those early Ramones compositions written by Dee Dee (he wrote most of the early ones), it’s fast, easy to remember and catchy as hell.

“We Have Returned” lands somewhere between The Who and Bowie with its tempo changes, Keith Moon like percussive drive and Townshend type guitars. It’s a killer track – among my favorites so far this year.

It’s also worth noting that Allen played all of the instruments on the album.

Ryan Allen has a formula that seems to be the new model for success. He and others like him (Nick Piunti and Richard Turgeon immediately come to mind) have come to realize that under the new music business model, one must be unusually prolific to survive. Releasing at least an album a year is mandatory in order to create sync opportunities and generate the needed capital to keep doing what you’re doing. The winner is the last one standing. The Last Rock Band.

Get Ryan Allen’s The Last Rock Band

Ryan Allen’s The Last Rock Band releases March 3 on Setterwind Records via digital, CD and cassette. You can preorder it at Ryan’s Bandcamp page HERE.