A Date With the Smithereens

A Date With the Smithereens

A Date With the Smithereens
Release date: April 26, 1994

  1. War for My Mind
  2. Everything I Have Is Blue
  3. Miles from Nowhere
  4. Point of No Return
  5. Sleep the Night Away
  6. Love is Gone
  7. Long Way Back Again
  8. Gotti
  9. Sick of Seattle
  10. Can’t Go Home Anymore
  11. Life Is So Beautiful

Produced by Don Dixon

Promo photo for A Date With the SmithereensThe Smithereens — guitarists DiNizio and Babjak, bassist Mike Mesaros and drummer Dennis Diken – have long been a breeding ground for tunes built with a broad knowledge of the pop lineage. The concise emotional thrust of A DATE WITH THE SMITHEREENS links it with past cornerstones of smart, gutsy guitar rock. When Kurt Cobain mentioned that Nirvana was listening to the Beatles and Smithereens during the making of Nevermind, it was easy to understand why the Seattle trio’s structural designs were so drastically shored up. The Smithereens know all about the nuts ‘n bolts of rock; sturdy melodies and pithy lyrics never go out of style.

“We focused on tunes that were a little left of center, that had real personalities,” DiNizio explains. That’s why personal conundrums (“Everything I Have Is Blue”), the world’s first female serial killer (“Long Way Back Again”), the withered grunge scene (“Sick of Seattle”), the L.A. riots (“Love Is Gone”) and questions of political right and wrong (“Gotti”) all made the grade. At the center of the record is the evocative “Afternoon Tea,” at once graceful and gritty. Each is memorable from the first listen, both vitality and content driving them to a distinguished realm.

Such spontaneity is what probably attracted guest guitarist Lou Reed, who reveres clarity and passion himself. He solos on “Long Way Back Again” and “Point Of No Return.” DiNizio recognizes Reed’s playing as “charming and emotional.”

After 14 years together, the sound of the band is instantly identifiable, and as A DATE WITH THE SMITHEREENS flies by, the benefits of sustaining a steady membership become obvious. At this late date, their style is unquestionably their own. “We shouldn’t be pinned down to any time or space,” concludes DiNizio. “Rather than modernists or traditionalists, we hear ourselves as structuralists. Tight, three minute songs with strong hooks and melodies — that’s what’s most important.”

“One of our best albums. It’s on a par with anything we’ve ever done.” -Pat DiNizio