He's on Drugs Again (1995)
The college town of Bloomington, Indiana, was a breeding ground for countless indie bands in the '90s. (See Jeb Banner's amazing Musical Family Tree site for proof). Unlike other cities in the Midwest, punk never established a dominant foothold there and many of the area's bands leaned more towards the pop and rock end of the spectrum. Sardina is no exception, and their sole album Presents is one of the best and most memorable albums from the decade.
On Tiny Idols, Vol. 3, (out today!) I included their great track "I'll Be Around," written by Michelle Marchesseault. However, while putting the compilation together, I emailed back and forth with LonPaul Ellrich, who wrote Sardina’s cult favorite “He’s On Drugs Again.” He lobbied hard for me to use that song, which is admittedly awesome, but I felt that female songwriters were under-represented on my compilation and wanted to highlight Marchesseault’s song. Sadly, LonPaul passed away in 2008, leaving a huge hole in the Bloomington music community. He will be missed. Besides Sardina, he played in Marmoset and the United States Three, among many others.
Sardina was formed in 1993 by Marchesseault, Marty Green, Lon Paul Ellrich, and P.J. Christie. All four members wrote and sang, but Marty Green was considered by the others to be the primary force in the band. In 1995, just before their debut CD appeared, Green quit. The remaining members auditioned three more guitarists, but none quite lived up to the band’s or the label’s expectations, and the group folded for good in 1996.
Despite Sardina’s brief lifespan (and the fact that they moved to Chicago after forming), Sardina is still remembered by many Indiana residents as one of Bloomington’s best. In addition to Presents, Sardina also released three singles, one on Favorite Street, one on Egg Records and the other on HitIt.