American indie rock band formed in 1989 by members Stephen Immerwahr (vocal, bass), Chris Brokaw (drums) and John Engle (guitar). Codeine pioneered the slowcore and sadcore subgenres of indie rock, but with a more experimental attitude than other bands in the genre, such as Low, Idaho and Red House Painters. The band's original tone, marked by slow tempos, Immerwahrs nasal and apathic vocals, and Engle's ringing Telecaster, did not evolve much during their career.
Codeine released their first album ''Frigid Stars'' on the German label Glitterhouse in 1990. The album was released on Sub Pop the following year.
Their second release, the short album ''Barely Real'' was issued in 1992. Immerwahr rejected several of the songs after the recording session. Some of these songs would be re-recorded for the final album. The song ''W.'' is a solo performance on piano by David Grubbs (of Bastro, Squirrel Bait and Gastr del Sol). A somewhat different full-band version of the song appears on Codeines next album, but titled ''Wird''.