The Lemonheads – Live at The Astoria, London – Recorded October 3, 1996 and broadcast by WDR in Germany – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
The Lemonheads this weekend. Recorded at the Astoria in London on October 3, 1996 and re-broadcast sometime later by WDR in Cologne, Germany.
The Lemonheads formed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1986 by Evan Dando, Ben Deily, and Jesse Peretz. Dando has remained the band’s only constant member. After their initial punk-influenced releases and tours as an independent/”college rock” band in the late 1980s, the Lemonheads’ popularity with a mass audience grew in 1992 with the major label album It’s a Shame about Ray, which was produced, engineered, and mixed by The Robb Brothers (Bruce Robb, Dee, and Joe). This was followed by a cover of Simon and Garfunkel’s “Mrs. Robinson”, which eventually became one of the band’s most successful singles. The Lemonheads were active until 1997 before going on hiatus, but reformed with a new lineup in 2005 and released The Lemonheads the following year. The band released its latest album, Varshons 2, in February 2019.
After developing his signature blend of pop, punk, and country-rock on several independent records in the late ’80s, Dando moved the Lemonheads to Atlantic Records in 1990. Two years later, It’s a Shame About Ray made the group into media sensations, as Dando’s face appeared on music and teen magazines across America and Britain. Though the Lemonheads were poised to become superstars, the band never quite found the right breakthrough single, and their popularity peaked in the early ’90s. Around the same time, Dando descended into severe drug abuse that he curbed by the 1996 release of Car Button Cloth. However, he had missed his chance at stardom — though the group retained their cult following, much of their audience had already slipped away.
To refresh your memory on The Lemonheads during their 1996 period, performed right around the time of their release of Car Button Cloth, here’s that gig from The Astoria in London on October 10, 1996.
Enjoy the show.