The Lemonheads - The Constellation Room - September 28th, 2013
The Constellation Room
In a room surrounded by people at least twice my age and their children not even half my age I was completely out of place during the Lemonheads set on Saturday. The Constellation Room was half filled, which was actually a feat considering the band hasn't released an album of original songs in seven years.
The Lemonheads peaked in success with their 1992 album It's A Shame About Ray. Driving to the show I was excited to hear some of those songs specifically. Having never seen the band live, I was nervous they would not live up to an album they recorded 21 years ago. However, from the moment Evan Dando stepped on stage at the Constellation room to the moment he stepped off, It didn't matter that the band hasn't released music in a decade or if the original members backed the songs. Dando's voice brought the songs to a complete new life and attempt at bringing a new audience.
The opening bands were at best tolerable. One being a Black Sabbath-sounding trio, all female, the other being a group of men my dad's age making grungy noise rock tunes. It was expected though, because the Observatory usually pieces together strange openers and ultimately no band in the Orange County music scene seems to be influenced or even interested in what The Lemonheads do, so it's safe to say there was never a chance an worth while act would open.
When the Lemonheads came on they opened with a song I knew, "Confetti." The band flew through their setlist touching on other tracks from their breakout album including a slowed down version of "Drug Buddy" and the title track "It's a Shame About Ray." Not only did they live up to the recorded versions, but time did not wear on Dando's voice. The deep crevices of his voice were a little low in the mix, but were audible enough to fill the room.