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Barenaked Ladies

Canadian quintet Barenaked Ladies has yet to achieve the broad success in the U.S. that the band enjoys north of the border, but the group does have a rabid underground following here that goes wild for its inventive mix of quirky songwriting, top-notch musicianship and nod-and-a-wink humor.

Canadian quintet Barenaked Ladies has yet to achieve the broad success in the U.S. that the band enjoys north of the border, but the group does have a rabid underground following here that goes wild for its inventive mix of quirky songwriting, top-notch musicianship and nod-and-a-wink humor.

At the near-capacity Wadsworth Theater Thursday, the Sire/Reprise act put on an animated concert that was impressive on a number of levels.

The five members of the band, all in their 20s, split their time during the nearly two-hour show between impressive instrumental workouts, catchy hook-filled pop numbers and bouts of post-song frivolity that had the gathered faithful rolling in the aisles.

The music, mostly taken from the band’s two albums, sprinted from Beatles-esque songs of unrequited love to progressive-rock derbies; from odes to girl bands and fruit-as-gift to slights of singers Huey Lewis and Howard Jones — all without missing a beat.

Not much to look at (don’t expect this bunch on MTV anytime soon, unfortunately), the charming, fully clothed guys in Barenaked Ladies rely on talent, wit and a penchant for instinctual entertainment, qualities that regrettably don’t always lead to success in the fickle, trend-dominated world of pop music.

Barenaked Ladies

(Wadsworth Theater; 1,378 seats; $ 18.50 top)

  • Production: Promoted by Avalon & UCLA CFPA. Reviewed Feb. 23, 1995.
  • Crew:
  • Cast: Band: Steven Page, Ed Robertson, Jim Creeggan, Andrew Creeggan, Tyler Stewart.
  • Music By: