New Jersey rockers the Smithereens have unearthed a “lost album” five years after the death of singer Pat DiNizio and nearly 30 years after they recorded it.
Dubbed The Lost Album, the LP stems from a batch of unreleased songs the Smithereens recorded during fall 1993 studio sessions when the band was between record contracts. “The result of those one month marathon recording sessions is this album, unheard by the outside world until now,” the band said in a statement on Facebook.
Ahead of The Lost Album’s release on Sept. 23, the band has shared the first single, “Out of This World”:
Bassist Mike Mesaros shared more about The Lost Album in a statement, calling it “a sentimental ‘scrapbook’” among its members.
“Mine was tucked away in a dusty shoebox with other cassettes—forsaken raw nuggets of outakes, demos, rough mixes and silly chatter. Now, the inevitable turning of the clock and the tragic demise of friend and brother Pat has buffed and polished this collection of songs into emotional gold,” Mesaros added. “The Lost Album remains only 80 percent finished and rough mixed. The feeling and style, however, are all there, outweighing any overdub or mix considerations. It is something new, yet vintage, emerging from its warm analog tomb into a cold digital world.”
The Lost Album was recorded after the Smithereens were dropped by Capitol in 1993, as that label — despite Kurt Cobain calling the band a major influence — opted to focus on more grunge and alternative artists. After recording their “lost album” and signing with RCA, the Smithereens instead reentered the studio to make what became 1994’s A Date With the Smithereens, featuring the rock radio hit “Miles From Nowhere.”
“The Lost Album showcases some of DiNizio and [guitarist Jim] Babjak’s best writing and never better group empathy and collaboration. At this point we were really listening to each other and this was key in our individual styles meshing so well. A real band,” Mesaros continued. “We could be mean, sweet, joyful, or brooding. As need be. We still were in our prime — young, battle-scarred vets who were fluent in the lingua franca of rock ‘n roll but still not far removed from Jimmy’s garage and Pat’s basement. (We still aren’t.) Out of a shoebox it came. New and vintage. Come back with us. Let’s Get Outa This World.”
The Smithereens’ last studio LP was 2011’s aptly named record 2011. Six years later, in Dec. 2017, singer/guitarist DiNizio died at the age of 62. This month, the band’s surviving members embarked on a tour with Eighties rock great Marshall Crenshaw on lead vocals; the trek will continue throughout the remaining of the year, including a Dec. 3 hometown gig in Carteret, New Jersey.