Boston’s Big Boss Sounds Part 3

We’re back for a third week with the sounds of mid 1990’s Boston. With a population that swells each fall with the arrival of nearly a quarter million college students is it any wonder that Boston has produced or been home to so many bands. Unlike other cities with a recognizable sound (Memphis and Nashville spring to mind) there is no one Boston Sound as todays four bands illustrate.

Comprised of singer/guitarist Thalia Zedek (Live Skull, Uzi, Dangerous Birds, White Women), guitarist Chris Brokaw (Codeine), bassist Sean O’Brien (Kilkenny Cats) , and drummer Arthur Johnson (Bar-B-Q Killers) Come favored the blues-noir style of The Birthday Party and These Immortal Souls.

Like all Come albums their sophomore effort Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is noted for its

dark, intense and lengthy songs marked by Zedek’s emotional and distressed vocals, abrupt rhythms, and the tension-filled guitar interplay between Zedek and Brokaw.

Helium fronted by singer/guitarist Mary Timony (Autoclave) with bassist Brian Dunton and drummer Shawn King Devlin mixed radical feminism with punk rock. Heavy, sluggish guitars, keyboards, Timony’s breathy vocals layed over an understated rhythm section makes for an interesting listen.

Critically lauded throughout their career Morphine enjoyed little mainstream exposure and success in the US while internationally, especially in France and Australia, they enjoyed mainstream success and support.

Formed in 1990 by bassist/vocalist Mark Sandman (Treat Her Right), saxophonist Dana Colley (Three Colors ) and drummer Jerome Dupree they combined blues and jazz elements, traditional rock arrangements and Sandman’s deep, laid-back croon to make bluesy, bare-bones rock & roll without guitars.

Good received substantial airplay on American college radio and favorable reviews in alternative publications. Positive reaction to Good and extensive touring for their sophomore effort, 1993’s Cure for Pain helped that album sell an impressive 300,000 copies. Yes released in 1994 also received favorable reviews but the band only remained a cult favorite in the United States

Sadder still, at the age of 47 Sandman would collapse on-stage during a July 1999 Rome concert and died of a heart attack.

Orangutang; vocalist/guitarist Christian Dyas, guitarist David Steele, bassist Joe Klompus, and Todd Perlmutter on drums were a rock band from Boston. They released a ep and a full length on Imago Records; and like many bands signed during the indie/punk/grunge revolution of the 1990’s disappeared as quickly as they appeared.



Eleven: Eleven (Matador Records) 1992
Near Life Experience (Matador Records) 1996
Gently, Down the Stream (Matador Records) 1998

Steve Wynn (Backing Band for)

Melting in the Dark (Zero Hour) 1996


Pirate Prude [EP] (Matador Records) 1994
Superball [CD-Single] (Matador Records) 1995
The Dirt of Luck (Matador Records) 1995
Magic City (Matador Records) 1997
No Guitars [EP] (Matador Records) 1997


The American Jean (Warped Records) 1992
Hole in the Ground b/w Lucy (Pop Narcotic) 1993
Pat’s Trick (Matador Records) 1995


Good (Accurate / Distortion) 1992 (Rykodisc) 1994
Cure for Pain (Rykodisc) 1993
Thursday [CD- Single] (Rykodisc) 1994
Yes (Rykodisc) 1995
Super Sex [EP] (Rykodisc) 1995
Murder for the Money [CD-Single]
Like Swimming (Rykodisc / Dreamworks) 1997
Eleven O’Clock [EP] (Japan. Rykodisc) 1997
B-Sides and Otherwise (Rykodisc) 1997
Come in Houston (Rykodisc) 1997
Potion [Import] (Pid) 1997
Bootleg Detroit (Rykodisc) 2000
The Night (Dreamworks) 2000
The Best of Morphine: 1992 – 1995 (Rykodisc) 2003


Rykodisc / Hannibal Spring 94 Collection (Rykodisc) 1994
The Rykodisc ’95 Fall Mixer (Rykodisc) 1995
HORDE Festival (What Are Records?) 1995
The HORDE Festival 1997 (Hollywood Records) 1997
Safe and Sound – A Benefit in Response to the Brookline Clinic Violence (Mercury)
Volume Magazine, Volume 17: Fifth Birthday Bumper Bonanza [2 CDS + Book] [Import] [CD] [Double CD]

Sound Tracks

Things to Do in Denver When You’re Dead – Music From the Miramax Motion Picture (Miramax)


The Rewards of Cruelty [EP] (Imago Records) 1993
Dead Sailor Acid Blues (Imago Records) 1994

ComeDon’t Ask Don’t Tell (Matador Records) 1994

Playing Time: 51 minutes 38 seconds

Come - Don't Ask Don't Tell
1. Finish Line (6:35)
2. Mercury Falls (4:16)
3. Yr Reign (4:20)
4. Poison (2:26)
5. Let’s Get Lost (7:08)
6. String (3:50)
7. German Song (5:55)
8. In/Out (4:46)
9. Wrong Side (4:45)
10. Arrive (7:37)

Don’t Ask Don’t Tell – Part 1

Don’t Ask Don’t Tell – Part 2

Buy Come’s Don’t Ask Don’t Tell from

HeliumThe Dirt of Luck (Matador Records) 1995

Playing Time: 44 minutes 23 seconds

Helium - The Dirt of Luck

1. Pat’s Trick (3:20)
2. Trixie’s Star (2:45)
3. Silver Angel (2:54)
4. Baby’s Going Underground (6:25)
5. Medusa (3:11)
6. Comet #9 (2:10)
7. Skeleton (4:11)
8. Superball (2:35)
9. All the X’s Have Wings (3:14)
10. Oh the Wind and Rain (5:30)
11. Honeycomb (4:22)
12. Flower of the Apocalypse (3:46)

The Dirt of Luck

Buy Helium’s The Dirt of Luck from

MorphineGood (1993)

Playing Time: 38 minutes 16 seconds

Morphine - Good1. Good (2:34)
2. The Saddest Song (2:53)
3. Claire (3:09)
4. Have A Lucky Day (3:30)
5. You Speak My Language (3:26)
6. You Look Like Rain (3:40)
7. Do Not Go Quietly Unto Your Grave (3:20)
8. Lisa (0:51)
9. The Only One (2:44)
10. Test-Tube Baby / Shoot’m Down (3:10)
11. The Other Side (3:54)
12. I Know You (Part I) (2:17)
13. I Know You (Part II) (2:48)


Buy Morphine’s Good from

OrangutangDead Sailor Acid Blues (Imago Records) 1994

Playing Time: 46 minutes 58 seconds

Orangutang - Dead Sailor Acid Blues

1. Slahday & Camus (0:40)
2. Bigger Chunk (4:05)
3. They All Write Her Songs (3:51)
4. The Day Before I Died (3:12)
5. Sea of Glass (6:37)
6. Shiny Like Gold (4:21)
7. Sweet Lemon Maureen (4:17)
8. Pontchartrain (1:25)
9. Lucky Jad (4:38)
10. Daddy Raw (4:16)
11. Surf Continental (5:20)
12. Surf Epilogue (2:03)
13. A.M. (2:13)

Dead Sailor Acid Blues

Buy Orangutang’s Dead Sailor Acid Blues from

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