The Rehearsal Tapes Series (Pilot Episode: The Lost Album)
We’re planning a recurring feature on this site we’re calling The Rehearsal Tapes. For each episode, we’ll dig through old cassettes looking for songs that, for one reason or another, never got the full studio treatment.
For this pilot episode, we’re cheating a little bit, as all these tracks were actually recorded in fancy studios, though most of them never got final mixes or mastering. But we wanted to put together an alternative history, like one of those sci-fi novels that imagines the South won the civil war or something. The player below answers the question, “What would TMJ’s fifth record have sounded like if it hadn’t taken them four years to find another label?”
We recorded dozens of songs after finishing the touring for Mutiny at the beginning of 1993 and the day Sandy left the band in the fall of ‘94, and while many of those eventually came out, either on the re-release of Green Eggs and Crack or the Gods and Sods collection, they never got assembled as they might have sounded in their own coherent package. So here we’ve combined those cuts with the original, unreleased versions of 6 tracks that wound up on …finally. All of them feature Sandy playing his Status bass and singing.
The original plan for album 5 (in Tim’s head, at least) had been to open with “Secret Handshake” and end with “Even the Queen.” What would have wound up in between those two is anybody’s guess. At least two of these probably would have been cut, and the order would likely have been different after the band argued about it for a while, but this is a reasonable approximation of what the denizens of an alternative universe got to buy at Tower Records (perhaps, in that alternate universe, Tower Records still exists).
Taken together, you get an odd mixture of bliss and resignation that feels quite a bit different from the loud-fast-still-rules vibe of …finally. Whether this is a good or a bad thing we leave to you to decide — that’s what comments sections are for, after all.
Update, 6/26: By popular demand, we’re making these tracks available for download. We hadn’t originally, because you can assemble most of this from existing albums if you’re so inclined, but in the name of convenience, and giving you more than streaming access to the Sandy …finally demos, here you go: