Here’s two strange bits of news in a row — the newly reformed Lemonheads, a seminal alternative rock band from the ’90s, who if anything, skew country, have signed with metal label the End for an album of covers. And oh yes, Lemonheads leader Evan Dando has cashed in his connections and gotten ’90s it girls Liv Tyler and Kate Moss involved in the project.
The band recorded their comeback album, The Lemonheads, in 2006 on Vagrant. A fine collection of songs, it was moderately successful. But part of the Lemonheads charm has always been the cover songs they played — from “Mrs. Robinson,” a hit for the band in 1992, to Gram Parson’s “Brass Buttons,” which appeared on the underrated Lovey. Dando even covered Suzanne Vega’s “Luka” back in the day.
The new album is called Varshons, and was produced by Butthole Surfers frontman Gibby Haynes. Tyler sings on Leonard Cohen’s “Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye,” and Kate Moss appears on the Amsterdam band Arling and Cameron’s “Dirty Robot.” Dando also puts his spin on Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful” and Townes Van Zandt’s “Waiting Around To Die.”
The inspiration for the album came from Hayne’s musical tutelage. “Making a good mix is an art, and Gibby has it down,” Dando said in a statement. “I thought it would be fun to share these songs with other people like he shared them with me. So I picked the ‘greatest hits’ from his mixes and covered them, along with a few other songs I always wanted to play.”
Varshons comes out June 23rd.
Here’s the track list:
‘I Just Can’t Take It Anymore’ (Gram Parsons)
‘Layin’ Up With Linda’ (G.G. Allin)
‘Waiting Around To Die’ (Townes Van Zandt)
‘Green Fuz’ (Randy Alvey & Green Fuz)
‘Yesterlove’ (Sam Gopal)
‘Dirty Robot’ feat. Kate Moss (Arling & Cameron)
‘Dandelion Seeds’ (July)
‘Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye’ feat. Liv Tyler (Leonard Cohen)
‘Beautiful’ (Linda Perry)