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Like Swimming
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Performer Notes
  • Morphine: Dana Colley (baritone, tenor, bass & double saxophones, background vocals); Mark Sandman (2-string slide bass, vocals, tritar, keyboards, mellotron, guitar); Billy Conway (drums, percussion, background vocals).
  • Additional personnel: Mike Rivard (acoustic bass); Larry Dersch (drums); Melissa Gibbs, Meredith Byam, DJK (background vocals).
  • Recorded at Fort Apache, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
  • Personnel: Mark Sandman (vocals); Dana Colley (baritone saxophone); Billy Conway (drums).
  • Audio Mixer: Matthew Ellard.
  • Morphine is a textbook example of just how far the definition of alternative rock can be stretched. A casual listen to radio or peek at the charts in the post-Nirvana world would lead one to believe that the parameters of modern rock lie somewhere between Live and Bush, with little variation from the jackhammer-guitar-and-angst-ridden-vocals formula allowed. But vocalist/two-string "slide" bassist Mark Sandman and his unconvential trio are the photographic negative of the Nirvanawannabe legions.
  • Sandman's low, breathy vocals and elastic basslines combine with Dana Colley's impossibly low sax grunts and Billy Conway's syncopated, jazzy drumming to create a sound that makes Spinal Tap's infamous "Big Bottom" seem positively tinny. Throughout LIKE SWIMMING the band pursues a jazzy, understated groove that is sinuous, sensual and downright slippery. Lyrics use simplicity and humor to good effect, and exist largely to set the mood for the tunes' angular, minor-key riffs. The liquid flow of Morphine's songs makes listening to the band's fourth album feel very much LIKE SWIMMING.
Professional Reviews
Entertainment Weekly (3/14/97, p.81) - "With a lineup of two-string slide bass, baritone sax, and drums, this Boston trio makes a seductively noirish noise unlike anything in contemporary rock....exotically refreshing."

- Rating: A

Q (4/97, p.126) - 3 Stars (out of 5) - "...With this fourth album, Morphine have quite sensibly resisted the urge to dangerously tamper with a possibly unique formula."

Option (5-6/97, p.117) - "...grabs ahold of your head and bottom and won't let go. Sandman's lyrics are a mix of hipster bedtime stories and crafty non sequiturs, and they set smooth as silk against the superbly simple funksmanship of drummer Billy Conway and the inspired moans of saxman Dana Colley..."
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