Various Artists

Little Darla Has a Treat for You, Vol. 1: Summer 1995

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As the Zen proverb says, the journey of a thousand miles begins with but a single step. Likewise, the long-running Little Darla Has a Treat for You samplers began in mid-1995 not with the eclectic, genre-colliding smorgasbords that would define the series as it progressed, but rather a more uniform and conservative 17-song collection defined primarily by the indie pop that originally gave the Darla label its identity. Opening with the cuddlecore one-two punch of Cub's "Ticket to Spain" and Bunnygrunt's "Macho Beagle," the disc includes acts both cult-worthy (Tullycraft, Bugskull, the Brian Jonestown Massacre) and long-forgotten (Sugar Plant, Nerdy Girl, Hot Monkey). In its way, each volume of the Little Darla series is like a time capsule -- not the label's original intent, perhaps, but as documents of the ever-evolving indie rock scene, these discs serve an invaluable purpose.