The Lemonheads at Indigo 02.
There is no pomp or ceremony about Evan Dando and the Lemonheads tonight, they even come on stage when the background music is playing and catch the operator off guard. “Turn the music off” he shouts and then “turn the music back on” he jests. A quick tune up and wham straight into Hospital, Down About It, & Tenderfoot all played in that familiar jerky style and loud.
After a breakneck start Evan slows things down a little with a cover from the Vershons album New Mexico which he gets to display his deepening vocal range. The show is all about variations and showing off The Lemonheads great catalogue that after a few years of not not feeling relevant anymore has suddenly banged on the door and demanded to be let back in.
The depth of songs is what enables Dando to deliver a solo stint in a Billy Bragg-esque fashion with an unaccompanied Frank Mils in which the crowd joined in knowing all the words “He was last seen with his friend, A drummer, he resembles George Harrison of the Beatles. But he wears his hair. Tied in a small bow at the back” getting the biggest retort.
Placing his acoustic guitar, without a pick up, against one of those “old fashioned” dynamic range microphones he serenaded to us including another great sing along with The Outdoor Type. Chris Brokaw enter the stage and the two of them jam and busk through ……..
Bringing the full band back on stage for the climax of the show to play at (what I think is) blistering pace and if possible even louder, there is a certain pitch that just goes straight through your ears and The Lemonheads hit it hard tonight. Confetti, Shame About Ray, Great Big No, Stove & Rudderless all follow and the place goes wild. A heart rendering version of My Drug Buddy fills the hall and without a bye or leave off they go.
Back on for the encore Evan plays through a few more solo songs and then a crushing version of Alison’s Starting To Happen to finish off the night. Ok the sound was not that great and the show a little shambolic at times but that in a way is the The Lemonheads all over, no matter what the line up, that is the ethos of band in all its changeable glory.
Photography and Review by Simon Jay Price