Lost Classics: Come “Near Life Experience”

tapem200bThey’re nobody’s buzz bands anymore. But since 1993, MAGNET has discovered and documented more great music than memory will allow. The groups may have broken up or the albums may be out of print, but this time, history is written by the losers. Here are some of the finest albums that time forgot but we remembered in issue #75, plus all-new additions to our list of Lost Classics.

Near Life Experience // Matador, 1996

come380 The needles, the damage done and the subsequent cycles of kicking junk, sweating recidivism, then relapsing; toxic, destructive codependencies; the epic, bluesy intertwine of Thalia Zedek’s vocals and Chris Brokaw’s glassine guitar lines. Such was the stock-in-trade of Boston’s Come in the ‘90s. The band was made up of refugees from Live Skull and Codeine, and its austere, bleak rock was propelled by the weather-worn croak of Zedek, a recovering heroin addict. By Near Life Experience, the group’s longtime rhythm section had bolted; Zedek and Brokaw compensated by recruiting members of Tortoise and Rodan to help record Come’s most cinematic, diverse and accessible album.

Catching Up: After 1998’s underwhelming Gently Down The Stream, Come’s principals splintered into solo-album and guest-spot obscurity without officially breaking up. Zedek struck out on her lonesome; the Thalia Zedek Band issued Liars And Prayers last year. Meanwhile, Brokaw has performed and recorded with the likes of Thurston Moore, Evan Dando and Steve Wynn, scored films and issued a handful of overlooked solo records.