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Morphine is a rarity -- bluesy, bare-bones rock & roll without any guitars. Instead of guitar riffs, the trio relies on sliding two-string basslines, raucous saxophones, and wry, ironically detached vocals. During the mid-'90s, Morphine gained a sizable cult following in America, primarily due to good word of mouth, heavy college airplay, and positive reviews. Morphine was formed in 1990 by bassist/vocalist Mark Sandman, who had previously played with the bluesy alternative rock band Treat Her Right, and Dana Colley (tenor and baritone saxophone), a former member of the local Boston group Three Colors. Sandman and Colley added drummer Jerome Dupree to complete the lineup. The group released its debut album, Good, on the independent Accurate/Distortion label in 1991; it was reissued on Rykodisc Records in 1992. Good received substantial airplay on American college radio stations, as well as favorable reviews in alternative publications across the country. After the release of Good, Dupree left the band and was replaced by Billy Conway, who had previously played with Sandman in Treat Her Right. The positive reception to Good set the stage for 1993's Cure for Pain, which received good reviews from a variety of music and mainstream publications upon its spring release. Morphine supported Cure for Pain with an extensive American and European tour that lasted throughout 1994, which helped the album sell over 300,000 copies -- an impressive feat for an independent release. In 1995, Morphine released their third album, Yes, which also received favorable reviews and helped the band sustain its large cult following. The success of Cure for Pain and Yes also attracted the attention of major record labels, and in late 1996, Dreamworks bought out the majority share of Morphine's contract from Rykodisc. Like Swimming, the group's debut for Dreamworks, was released in the spring of 1997 to generally favorable reviews, yet it failed to break Morphine out of cult status. On July 3, 1999, Sandman collapsed on-stage during a performance in Rome, dying of a heart attack at the age of 46. The Night was posthumously issued early the following year and the live disc Bootleg Detroit appeared in fall 2000. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Albums by

Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Cure for Pain
  3.   Honey White
  4.   Buena
  5.   Hanging on a Curtain
  6.   Early to Bed
  7.   Let's Take a Trip Together
  8.   Dawna
  9.   Sheila
  10.   Free Love
  11.   I Know You, Pt. 2
  12.   Sharks
  13.   The Jury
  14.   Yes
  15.   You Speak My Language
  16.   Gone for Good
  17.   I Had My Chance
  18.   Have a Lucky Day
  19.   Women R Dogs
  20.   Shoot 'Em Down
  21.   Shadow
  22.   Shade
  23.   Put It Down (Wo-Oh)
  24.   Patience
  25.   Moons of Jupiter
  26.   Lunch in Hell
  27.   Imaginary Song
  28.   I'd Catch You
  29.   Call Back
  30.   At Your Service
  31.   5:09
  32.   Whisper
  33.   Like a Mirror
  34.   I Know You (Pt. 1)
  35.   Claire
  36.   The Saddest Song
  37.   Good
  38.   Sharks Patrol These Waters
  39.   Radar
  40.   Eleven O'Clock
  41.   Thursday
  42.   In Spite of Me
  43.   A Head With Wings
  44.   Candy
  45.   Mile High
  46.   Shame
  47.   Lilah II
  48.   It's Not Like That Anymore
  49.   Hello Baby
  50.   Sexy Christmas Baby Mine
  51.   I Had a Chance
  52.   Scratch
  53.   Banter#2
  54.   Billy Intro
  55.   Banter#1
  56.   Come Along
  57.   Intro
  58.   Take Me with You
  59.   Slow Numbers
  60.   The Way We Met
  61.   I'm Yours, You're Mine
  62.   Rope on Fire
  63.   A Good Woman Is Hard to Find
  64.   Top Floor, Bottom Buzzer
  65.   So Many Ways
  66.   The Night
  67.   You're an Artist
  68.   The Other Side
  69.   Test-Tube Baby/Shoot'm Down
  70.   The Only One
  71.   Lisa
  72.   Do Not Go Quietly Unto Your Grave
  73.   My Brain
  74.   Pulled Over the Car
  75.   You Look Like Rain
  76.   Mail
  77.   Kerouac
  78.   Empty Box
  79.   French Fries With Pepper
  80.   Murder for the Money
  81.   Like Swimming
  82.   Wishing Well
  83.   Potion
  84.   Lilah
  85.   Miles Davis' Funeral
  86.   Mary Won't You Call My Name?
  87.   I'm Free Now
  88.   Bo's Veranda
  89.   All Wrong
  90.   Super Sex
  91.   Down Love's Tributaries
  92.   I Know You, Pt. 3
  93.   Mary
  94.   Dana Intro
  95.   Swing It Low
  96.   Sunday Afternoon Weightlessness
  97.   Come Over
  98.   Souvenir
  99.   All Your Way
  100.   Banter#3
  101.   Bye Bye Johnny