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It's a Shame About Ray by Lemonheads (1992)

LemonheadsAudio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)

Price: $7.38 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 21, 2013)
  • Original Release Date: February 3, 2012
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Atlantic 0191
  • ASIN: B000002IUZ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #95,573 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Rockin Stroll
2. Confetti
3. It's A Shame About Ray
4. Rudderless
5. Buddy
6. The Turnpike Down
7. Bit Part
8. Alison's Starting To Happen
9. Hannah & Gabi
10. Kitchen
11. Ceiling Fan In My Spoon
12. Frank Mills
13. Mrs. Robinson

Editorial Reviews

It's A Shame About Ray by The Lemonheads

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars all-time favorite feel-good album November 6, 2005
Format:Audio CD
Lemonheads-It's a Shame About Ray (1992) My all-time favorite feel-good album, all songs are under four minutes long. The Boston-based band churns out the most catchy tunes I've ever heard. Singer/guitarist/lyricist Evan Dando's songs have an air of innocence and wonderment that always leaves me feeling happy to be alive. Juliana Hatfield was a member of the band at this time, and Johnny Depp and Faye Dunaway starred in the video for album's title track. "Rockin' Stroll" is sung from the perspective of a baby in his stroller: "People's knees and trunks of trees smile at me." "My Drug Buddy" is about scoring some dope and just enjoying a female friend's company. Lyrics like, "Thrilled to be in the same post-code as you.../Smile at me, I'll hold you really tight/Follow you into bed," are practically irresistible. And "Rudderless" must be one of the most catchiest songs ever made. I pop this cd in when I'm feeling low, and it never fails to cheer me up.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As Sweet As the Candy That Is the Band's Namesake November 13, 2004
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
A professor of mine once suggested that a good short paper was always better than a good long one. The same, I think, can be said of CDs (even though I consider the 76-minute "Blueberry Boat" to be one of the best releases of 2004). The original release of The Lemonheads' CD "It's A Shame About Ray" was under 30 minutes long, and was later padded by the cover of Mrs Robinson. When a short record is done right, it leaves no space for throwaways or wasted moments. Having said that, "It's A Shame About Ray" is, in short, done right.

Released 10 months after "Nevermind," "Ray" is kinder, gentler release of the grunge era ("bubblegrunge" was the term applied to it). Singer/songwriter Evan Dando does a fine job of mixing all of his influences into the record: jangle pop, country rock, power pop, and punk. He sings in an understated and unpretentious manner that succeeds all the same in bringing his clever lyrics into full relief. The jangley acoustic strumming and crisp arpeggios that come to the fore give the CD a very autumnal feel, one that makes the setting seem more like a wealthy, wooded bedroom community than suburbia.

The first half of the CD alternates among slow (My Drug Buddy), mid (Confetti), and up tempo (The Turnpike Down) numbers, and then climaxes to perfection with the drum-propelled tracks Bit Part and the magnificent Alison's Starting to Happen. Simply put, these songs are two of the best pieces of evidence to suggest that the three-minute pop song is one minute too long. (The latter contains what is probably the best lyric on the entire record: "She's the puzzle piece behind the couch that made the sky complete.") But it is hardly all downhill from there.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic September 26, 2000
Format:Audio CD
The oversaturation of "alternative" bands that went mainstream in the early '90's produced very little worth mentioning today. The Lemonheads are an exception, and this, their second major-label effort (5th overall) is their shining moment.
It's too bad Evan Dando has never received his due as a songwriter, most of the band's well-known songs are covers. Originally, this album closed with "Frank Mills", from the musical "Hair". Atlantic later tacked on their rocking cover of "Mrs. Robinson", which became their biggest hit.
But the real gems on this disc are Dando's - "It's a Shame About Ray", "Confetti", "Allison's Starting to Happen", "My Drug Buddy"....all classics in the Lemonheads catalog. The music is catchy and the lyrics are clever -- great straightforward pop-rock.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just one of those albums October 15, 1999
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
You know how you have some albums in your collection that you're especially fond of? Not because they're necessarily the 'greatest" artistic achievements or the most influential groundbreakers but just because you never get tired of listening to them? This is one of those records for me. It's absolutely perfect in its low-key, effortless melodicism and I'll always love it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely Lovely Lovely March 15, 2000
Format:Audio CD
Now this is a great album. Every song is a potential single. Everything is short enough for you too wish it would go on. Every tune is catchy, but after 8 years I'm not bored yet! And did Evan say things never said before? What about this, "She's the puzzle piece behind the couch that makes the sky complete"! Yeah, she is too. This is great and it will make you happy. What more can you want from a guitar band?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Short, sweet, perfect May 30, 2003
Format:Audio CD
The big problem with cds is that they're too darn long. Seriously, if you look at the albums on most all-time best of lists, they're about 45 minutes long. Since cds came out most discs are intent on running to the maximum 74 or 80 minutes. To put it in context, that's longer than Exile on Main Street, London Calling and Zen Arcade. The point is, every time you buy a cd you can bet on at least a half hour of filler. That's annoying.

No such problems with "It's a Shame About Ray." Its only 27 minutes long, 32 if you get a later version with their silly but catchy cover of "Mrs. Robinson" attached. What it lacks in running time, it more than makes up for in quality. Its a dozen slightly countrified punk pop gems, which occupy a paradise somewhere between Green Day and Gram Parsons. That is to say every song is immediately catchy yet instantly familiar on first listen. Its the kind of record where,if it stays in your rotation for awhile (and it most certainly will), it will yield a new favorite track every few days. 10 years after its release, it still delivers the goods every time.

High points include the title track, Hannah and Gabi, My Drug Buddy and Confetti, but there's really not a weak number in the bunch. Most tracks are mid to slightly uptempo and dominated by acoustic guitar and Evan Dando's wonderfully warm singing. If the songs have any weakness its that they can be lyrically slight but they're so bouncy, charming and relentlessly catchy that hardly distracts at all. This one deserves a spot in any collection and stands as one of the most memorable albums of the 90's.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars good
There's a couple of air-famous songs on this, but they're almost beside the point. The whole album is good enough to listen to over and over; which I did recently on a long hike.
Published 15 months ago by Dale J. Seachord
5.0 out of 5 stars Vintage glory
I'm a die-hard alternative fan, and I saw a lemonheads cassette in a second hand store, in the midst of the statler brothers and some indie gospel tapes. Read more
Published on August 31, 2011 by J. Jongeling
5.0 out of 5 stars Evan Dandos defining moment
I bought this cd in the mid-90s and was immediatly impressed at the overall listenability of it. Yes, there is some filler, but its filler that does not do much to interrupt the... Read more
Published on July 18, 2011 by Colin J. Koran
5.0 out of 5 stars classic
I like the Lemonheads early stuff like Creator, but this album is their best. The original did not contain the radio hit "Mrs. Robinson", and that's how it should be. Read more
Published on July 14, 2011 by kbarth17
5.0 out of 5 stars The Reason People Still Think Evan Dando Matters
I discovered the Lemonheads in 1989 when the Luka video came out. Getting the Lick tape (twice since the first time, it wasn't recorded properly), I can still remember thinking how... Read more
Published on July 10, 2009 by dan glass
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Effort From The Lemonheads - And Of The 90s
One of the greatest albums of the 90s. Up there with Weezer's first release ("Weezer"-Blue Album) and the Gin Blossoms' "New Miserable Experience."
Published on January 15, 2009 by F. Nava
5.0 out of 5 stars An Alltime Favorite
This is one of the best albums ever produced if you ask me. It's not like I'm a huge Lemonheads fan or anything, but this album is stellar. Read more
Published on April 6, 2007 by Jacob Cowell
5.0 out of 5 stars It's A Shame There Aren't More As FUN As This by The Lemonheads
Believe me This isn't sour candy... "It's A Shame About Ray," was The Lemonheads fifth and best release (June 1992), their Breakthrough Album! Read more
Published on March 30, 2007 by Chris G.
5.0 out of 5 stars This CD ROCKS, buy it!
What can I say about the Lemonheads, they're one of the best bands I have ever heard. The chords that they use on some of their songs are awesome. Read more
Published on January 24, 2006 by Kurt Baer
1.0 out of 5 stars It's a shame about the lemonheads
After one reviewer clamed this album was "Better than Joy Division! Better than the Smiths!" I was surprised to find that "It's a Shame about Ray" was completely unimpressive... Read more
Published on January 9, 2006 by G. Knapp
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