Having abandoned his role as a poster boy for ‘90s nihilism
in favor of purer pop instincts, Evan Dando opts for another comeback attempt
under the Lemonheads moniker, maintaining the momentum begun with the
reconstituted band’s 2006’s self-titled return.
While the sunnier sentiments that dominated efforts like Its a Shame About Ray take precedence
over the edgier elements of their earliest albums, Dando and his new band of
recruits take some broad detours and test their more adventurous inclinations.
Essentially a set of odd and mostly unknown covers, Varshons veers from the shimmering folk
strum of Gram Parsons’ “I Just Can’t Take It Anymore” to the darker designs of
“Fragile,” “Layin’ Up With Linda” and “New Mexico,” as originally rendered by
Wire, G.G. Allin and the Fuckemos, respectively. Townes Van Zandt, Leonard Cohen and Linda
Perry offer more familiar songwriting sources while cameos by actresses Kate
Moss and Liv Tyler enhance the curiosity factor.
Tracks: “I Just Can’t Take It Anymore,” “Hey, That’s No Way to Say
Goodbye” LEE ZIMMERMAN