Press: The Seattle Times

November 12, 1993, by Tom Phalen
Concert preview

The Lemonheads with Hole and Walt Mink, 8 p.m. Sunday, Moore Theatre; $10.77 advance, $13 the day of the show

When Lemonheads leader Evan Dando is just hanging out, he’s like a big puppy who hasn’t grown into his paws. And sooner or later, literally or figuratively, he’s going to land up in your lap.

On stage, either solo or with the Lemonheads, Dando isn’t much different, perhaps a little more focused. He’s still goofy but he’s very engaging as well. He’s also a gifted songwriter and interpreter of other people’s songs.

The Lemonheads was formed in Boston in 1986. Dando is the only remaining founding member, however, drummer David Ryan and bassist Nic Dalton have logged in a couple years now, which makes them as permanent as anything gets in the world of Dando. Dalton has even helped with some of the writing.

Australia is where most of the band’s new album “Come On Feel The Lemonheads” was written. The place down under is about as close to a “home base” as Dando has. He chooses mostly to live out of his suitcase, whether he’s touring or not.

Which might account for the freewheeling, untethered feel that most of Dando’s work has. If he isn’t writing under the assumed guise of another person – in “It’s About Time” he pretends he’s fellow Boston rocker and ex-Lemonhead bassist Juliana Hatfield – he can be furniture, clothing, lost artifacts, a destination or an unaccountable transitional moment of clarity. But while Dando may not be truly connected to anything or one in particular, he still gives the feeling of understanding, empathizing with what he writes about. It’s as if he floats above his subject matter, smiling beatifically.

Nonetheless, Dando and the rest of the Lemonheads can straight-ahead rock as well as anything else. The lyrics may float, but there’s nothing lightweight about the music.

Also on the bill is Hole, Courtney Love’s band. The last time Hole played Seattle was at the Off Ramp, right after that press and police unpleasantness. Courtney was in rare form. For a woman who can wail like a wounded banshee, Love also has a decidedly soft and melodic side, but you never know which persona will pounce out next.

Opening the show is Walt Mink.