By Jeremy Saperstein
Me, I always thought the idea of Evan Dando was a great one — a pretty-boy pop singer with the right influences, impeccable taste in covers and a band that friends were always telling me I should check out.
I did, and aside from some truly great moments (the ramshackle video for the Lemonheads’ cover of “Mrs. Robinson” where Evan is wearing a Gram Parsons t-shirt, or the heart-rending cover of “Frank Mills”), his career left me feeling like I had feasted on a mouthful of cotton candy.
The solo setting seems to give Dando room to be a little laid back and rough’n’ready, lightly experimenting with alternative instrumentation & sounds throughout, most notably on the syncopated “Waking Up”. Simple pop gems abound as well: “Hard Drive” (co-written with Australian pop wunderkind Ben Lee) and “In The Grass All Wine Colored,” which sounds lyrically as if it was a first line from Walt Whitman’s Leaves Of Grass.
All in all, this CD has been in my car player for most of the first nice days this summer — and it’s been a perfect soundtrack for them.