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to Be Found
Label: Blue Cave Records
Length: 13 tracks
After taking a four year hiatus, dada has returned with How to Be Found, an album that marks a welcome comeback from this California-based trio. Dada burst onto the scene in 1992 with Puzzle, their mainstream label debut. With songs such as “Dizz Knee Land” and “Dim”, they established a style of layered harmonies, catchy guitar riffs, and a return to the guitar solo.
Twelve years later, the band is back together, with all three original members (Joie Calio, Phil Leavitt, and Michael Gurley). Does How to be Found live up to their previous work? Almost. Musically, dada has always been an odd blend, with elements of such diverse sounds as Crowded House and The Smithereens showing up, with the occasional jam band drone thrown in. Lyrically, they range from stoner poetry to poignant, elaborate stories of childhood and chance encounters with women. Somehow, it always seems as if they aren’t working very hard, but it always manages to work somehow.
“Nothing Like You” is perhaps the best track, while “I Wish You Were Here Now” would fit into John Lennon’s solo catalogue stylistically. Songs like “How to be Found” and “Love is a Weird Thing” are easily dismissed upon first listen, but you find yourself humming the chorus days later.
After hearing this album, one hopes this isn’t a one off, money-driven reunion tour (given the clubs the band is playing, that doesn’t seem to be the case). How to be Found is close enough to the trademark sounds of previous albums (American Highway Flower, El Subliminoso) that you will want to hear more from this group.
Brian A. Smith 4/5/2004