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Friday, July 29, 2016

Nirvana -- MTV Unplugged in New York


10/10

So Kurt Cobain died. I watched his memorial service on MTV. His wife read his suicide note. I remember that part the most, because I was in disbelief at how she was embellishing his note with her own comments, and that most of those comments were derogatory to Kurt. It's easy to lose count of how many times she calls him an "asshole" in just the first few minutes. It's weird, I just watched it on Youtube for the first time since I saw it on TV 22 years ago, and I am realizing that I can almost remember it word for word.
Here it is.

Her reading felt so insulting to his memory, but as I watch it now, having been married for a decade and with a child of my own, I can understand the impulse she followed. It doesn't change the fact that he is gone, cannot give guidance to his child, and cannot make music anymore. And with that, I think I am already done talking about Cobain's death (SPOILER ALERT! I'M NOT!). Great symbols for generations usually die young. I don't know why. Maybe it is impossible for them to exist for too long. Whatever the case, their deaths always make for good conspiracies. I wonder, with the ubiquity of the Millennial Generation, if they'll have someone, a figurehead, like that. With the Internet seemingly carving up humanity into six billion subgroups, I seriously doubt it.
Nirvana left one last definitive audio document after Cobain's death, and their dissolution, though I remember watching MTV Unplugged in New York before Kurt died. I should remember, too, because it first aired on my birthday. It took nearly a full year for the audio CD of the concert to be released, though, seventh months after Cobain's April 1994 death.
MTV Unplugged in New York is Nirvana's last musical will and testament, but it's also a ghost of what might have been. After the noisy distortion of In Utero, Unplugged quite obviously goes for something less electric, but it is in no way a gimmick. Instead of just playing "the hits" with acoustic guitars, Cobain and crew used the Unplugged opportunity to evolve the musical identity of Nirvana. Two of Unplugged's 14 songs are Nirvana singles. Six are non-single tracks from Nirvana's previous three albums. The other six are covers of songs by bands who certainly do not sound like Nirvana. The performance of the eight Nirvana songs are stripped down, but they aren't "unplugged." Cobain plays through an amplifier the whole time. This isn't an acoustic Nirvana--it is a different iteration of Nirvana altogether. This Nirvana defies genre, particularly "grunge," blending folk, Americana, and classic rock, into their own unique sound and punk attitude.
I only say this is a "ghost" of what could have been, because I don't think Kurt could have survived without some serious mental health treatment for his depression and bipolar disorder, true rehabilitation for his crippling heroin addiction, and some type of peace or resolution in his marriage. I don't think Kurt would have been the same person after overcoming these considerable deficits, and I don't think the art he would have created after such an arduous, life-changing transformation would be predicated on anything he had done before, if indeed he would have wanted to continue making music at all. The person who survived would have certainly created something drastically different. The Kurt who wrote these four beloved albums could not possibly have survived past his 27 short years on this Earth. MTV Unplugged in New York is this iteration of Kurt Cobain's final musical stop.
With all that said, and little else to say, this is one of my favorite albums of all time, and contains one of my favorite musical moments ever. I won't even pretend like its is some obscure, little heralded moment. It is the most famous moment of this album.

As a junior high all-star with little life experience, I could still tell that "Where Did You Sleep Last Night?" is a dead man's song, and that the eyes that flutter open 5:06 into this video are those of a man who knows he will soon leave this Earth in a box. But the shriek leading up to that eye opening moment stops time itself.
I should also note that as a religious person, I am still troubled by Kurt's conclusions on track three of this album. He needed hope, and that song dashes it.
I don't have anything else to say about Baby Boomers vs. Generation X vs Millennials. Any human being can enjoy this performance...well, maybe not Baby Boomers. Thanks for reading these rambling, searching reviews, where I attempt to carve out my identity right in front of you. If anything, I hope you gained a further or new appreciation for this great band, whose name, I am quite certain, will emblazon the t-shirts of my (theoretical) grandchildren's generation...if they still wear shirts or aren't completely destroyed by some predicted or unpredicted disaster by then. My bets on destruction by Space Squirrels.

1994 DGC
1. About a Girl 3:37
2. Come as You Are 4:13
3. Jesus Doesn't Want Me for a Sunbeam (The Vaselines cover) 4:37
4. The Man Who Sold the World (David Bowie cover) 4:20
5. Pennyroyal Tea 3:40
6. Dumb 2:52
7. Polly 3:16
8. On a Plain 3:44
9. Something in the Way 4:01
10. Plateau (Meat Puppets cover) 3:37
11.Oh, Me (Meat Puppets cover) 3:26
12.Lake of Fire (Meat Puppets cover) 2:56
13. All Apologies 4:23
14. Where Did You Sleep Last Night (Traditional; arranged by Lead Belly) 5:08

Monday, July 25, 2016

Nirvana -- In Utero


8/10

In Utero is, in some people's opinion, a masterpiece, and in other's "Not as good as Nevermind." Opinions are also divided on exactly when Generation X gave way to the birth of the Millennials, and that segue was terrible.
After giving this generational topic plenty of thought, and noticing key differences in myself, and those several years younger than me, I think I can define this great line. Yes, I am still making fun of Underoath. I will never stop. Sorry.
If you grew up with Internet in at least your high-school classrooms, or had not yet begun college by 9/11, I think it is safe to say you are a Millennial. Everyone is different, and everyone can't just be lumped into a group, but as the generations go, I think those are the two determining events.
My school not only had no Internet during my entire stay there, but when I started college, classes were scheduled by phone. Yes, phone. Not cell phone. Just phone. If you had a rotary, this process was a living hell. While my family did acquire Internet during my final years of high school, it was more an oddity that allowed me to read video game reviews, and look at pornographic photos that took a good five minutes just to load down to the boobs. Only a truly patient man could sit and wait for the full package. You were better off taking a gander at the Playboy the kid with irresponsible parents brought to school every month (just make sure you didn't touch the pages!), or putting the TV on a lower station and hoping the Spice Channel would bleed through. Now, inquisitive latchkey kids can watch HD porn on their cellphones on the walk home from school.
I am sorry to use such a crass example, but methods of satisfying teenage curiosity is really the best way to describe this generation gap. If you wanted to know something between the mid 70's to mid-90's, you hoped you could either find a book about it, luck into a TV show talking about it, or ask someone in your class you hoped just wasn't making things up about it. There was no instant access of information. While older Millennials might recall having to do this in their early childhoods, a Gen X'er generally had to do this their entire adolescence to college and beyond. Speaking of which...if you had a Facebook account before graduating college...there is a good chance you are a Millennial.
It turns out, growing up with an easy access to information makes your mindset and thinking patterns a lot different from those of us who didn't...maybe it's why the Millennials are so damned positive all the time. I hate you guys.
This leads us to 9/11. Those of us who came of age before this happened grew up thinking that such a thing could not happen. It was nuclear destruction at the hand of The Soviets, or bust. Not so with Millennials--by the time they were in college, 9/11 had already happened, and they were subsequently more able to accept such things as a part of life.
The thing is, Gen X'ers, while we think about the late 70's-90's in a lovely golden Spielbergian haze, grew up under constant threat of nuclear annihilation. My elementary school routinely had us run desk drills, whereupon we would practice diving beneath them in case of a Ruski attack. Our schools were built with fallout shelters. And then that attack never came. We grew up under an unrealized attack, then when that bomb defused, thought life would be rosy forever-after (look at the stuff we did in the 90's, and particularly right at the change of the Millennium...it's like we expected to be in for an endless summer!). The end of the Cold War promised us a lifetime of peace, and when those damn planes hit the towers, we, as adults realized that dream was a lie. The Millennials never had that dream. Their childhoods were interrupted by a horrific day of unimaginable terror, and they grew up learning how to make the best of things, knowing the worst could always happen, because when they were kids, it literally did (though I guess it beat total nuclear destruction).
These are the key differences between Generation X'ers and Millennials: Our American Dream, painted Thomas Kinkade style for us by our Baby Boomer parents, and reinforced by the falling of the Iron Curtain and the disassembly of the USSR, is a lie we struggle to move past, while attempting to also navigate the strange minefield of modern digital technology. Millennials (in general) have no or a different expectation of this dream, and feel like they can make instead whatever life they want out of what they are given, utilizing the seemingly limitless technological tools at their fingertips...did I mention that I hate you guys?
There's a review somewhere in here...
There are two factors that could cause someone to say they like In Utero more than Nevermind:
1. They genuinely prefer In Utero, enjoying abrasive noise over stronger songwriting.
2. They are trying to look cool.
Yes, in the 23 years since In Utero was released, people have been trying to look cool by saying that they like it more than Nevermind. The members of Nirvana are included in this group. including Kurt Cobain, who did the very Gen X thing of making something inadvertently popular, then immediately attempting to make something that would be less popular as a reaction.
Cobain and co. interpreted Nevermind's overwhelming success as a sign that they had aimed too broadly and not focused on their more intrinsic qualities. Selling more than 10 million copies of an album is not very punk.
Thankfully, Cobain was such a once-in-a-generation artist, he couldn't release a bad album, even when he was being purposefully alienating. On the other hand, on an (impurely, as music opinions are subjective) objective level, In Utero is not as good as Nevermind.
How can I say such a thing?
Simple.
Can anyone honestly say that "Frances Farmer.,.", "Very Ape," "Milk It," and "Radio Friendly Unit Shifter" are as good as anything on Nevermind? I can't.
In Utero features, but not exclusively, a lot of harsh guitar distortion, and Cobain wailing like a banshee. The album was produced by Steve Albini, who, despite a reputation that is essentially based entirely on producing this one pretty good album, has produced some of my least favorite records by my favorite bands (Zao, for instance). Steve wanted the album to have as few commercial prospects as possible, to the degree that the band later had the album's obvious singles, "Heart-Shaped Box" and "All Apologies" re-worked by someone else. I'm sorry, it is really Steve Albini of me to slag Steve Albini (And Steve, I loved the Steve Taylor EP that you recorded late last year...maybe even more than their full length. Forget all that other stuff I said...except about Zao, that really was a letdown).
In Utero is still a solid album, though, anchored by the two previously-mentioned singles, which send out lines to the albums three other single-esque tracks, "Rape Me,"  "Dumb." and "Pennyroyal Tea." Plenty of the more aggressive, noisier songs are quite good, as well, especially "Scentless Apprentice," which features one of Dave Grohl's most enjoyably primal beats.

But of course, the two major standouts here are "Heart-Shaped Box" and "All Apologies." The video for the latter is one of Nirvana's most famous, and for me it is most memorable, behind only "Nevermind." With that said, anyone who pretends that they know what its about, with its esoteric religious imagery and meat ladies, is a dirty, dirty liar. I have to admit to being hit with a huge nostalgia wave here. My conservative Christian mother didn't mind Nirvana in the car, but she was no fan of MTV. My go to for "stuff my mom doesn't like me watching," was the Sanders' house next door. This was the home of three of my older cousins, all males. With the Sanders', I watched Baywatch, Rambo, Beavis and Butthead, and music videos. This was also where I, a Nintendo kid, played Sega video games (the Sanders' had a Master System, Genesis, and Sega CD), and having all these old neurons firing in my head these last few weeks has awakened cravings for the sounds and atmosphere of that particular period so badly, I just bought a Sega CD on E-Bay. I am serious. I am also almost finished with this review. Sorry...

I feel like I'll go further into "All Apologies" in the next and final Nirvana review, but this mantra-like song is what, along with his early death, placed Cobain among the hall of music sages. "All and all is all we are," floats him into some Bob Marley territory. And it's time for this review to float away. Up next, Unplugged.

1993 DGC
1. Serve the Servants 3:36
2. Scentless Apprentice 3:48
3. Heart-Shaped Box 4:41
4. Rape Me 2:50
5. Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge on Seattle 4:09
6. Dumb 2:32
7. Very Ape 1:56
8. Milk It 3:55
9. Pennyroyal Tea 3:37
10. Radio Friendly Unit Shifter 4:51
11. tourette's 1:35
12. All Apologies 3:51

Monday, July 18, 2016

Nirvana -- Nevermind


10/10

My favorite Nirvana story goes a little something like this:
One day my good friend Leblanc and I are riding to youth group in his mom's car. We pick up one of his friends and he gets in and holds up a bag.
"I've got something for you," he says.
"What?" we ask.
"Nevermind." he says.
"What do you mean, never mind? Are you not going to give it to us now?"
"No. I am going to give it to you. Nevermind."
"Wait, what? Are you going to give it to us or what?"
He holds it out. "Here. Nevermind."
"Why are you holding it out if you don't want us to take it?!"
"No! Nirvana. Nevermind."
"Oh, cool. ...So we can still have it, right?
That true-life Abbott and Costello routine brought to you by a pre-ubiquitous Internet early 90's.
That leads us right back into the last post's discussion. It's not really a discussion, though, because I am the only one who is talking.
My friend and I both liked Nirvana, having seen the video for "Smells Like Teen Spirit" on MTV. Some stereotypical Gen X'ers would rather adamantly remind you, gentle reader, that "In my day, MTV actually played videos (It was Music Television)," by this Gen x'er would like to go a step further, and remind that not only did MTV play videos, but for many of us, was our main exposure to new music. Before radio stations in South Louisiana were frequently blasting out Nirvana, MTV was showing their videos on national television, and those of us in junior high, high school, and college were watching.

I remember conversations between my cousin Amber and I on the way to school about this video directly after it first aired (yes, physical, non-electronic conversations!!!). Of course we thought it was awesome. Who under the age of 30 didn't? It is awesome. It contains so much incredible 90's Gen X flavor:
You have the completely apathetic crowd and disinterested (tattooed) cheerleaders with anarchy symbols on their uniforms (of course I had crushes on them). You have the yellow-tinted, impressionistic lighting. The lack of focus on the band members themselves (according to the video's director on a Nirvana DVD commentary, Cobain was the least vain artist he ever worked with). The throwaway shots to the weird, carnivalesque janitor dancing with his broom. And (chronologically) last, you have the seated teens getting up and surging forward in discontented riot.
I've seen this video and heard this song a million times over the last 25 years, and it's still awesome. And this is just Nevermind's first song.
Being first exposed to this song on television is a distinctly pre-Millennial experience. Those of us Generation X and older watched it when it happened. The Millennials watched it on Youtube or on retrospectives. However, I am realizing that I am not here to bury the Millennials, but to contextualize their experience. I know a lot of Millennials who love Nirvana. For them, Nirvana is more deified, with the myth and legend of Nirvana taking precedence, whereas those of us alive and aware of what was going on have a more complex relationship with the band. Living through it, Nirvana seemed more an embodiment of the times than some incredible, historically invincible band. As a late-period Gen X'er, I think the relationship I have to Bob Marley's music is similar to Millennials relationship to Nirvana. I was born around the time Marley's final, non-posthumous album was released, and my Baby Boomer hippie mother played Marley frequently throughout my childhood. I loved his music, and I still love his music, but it means something different to my mother than it does to me. For me, it's legendary, a still image, music that makes me feel good. I imagine, though, that my mother connects to it on a deeper, more experiential level.
Millennials have a running gag, which you can easily view in the Youtube comments (a favorite Millennial hangout) of any Nirvana video. That gag can be boiled down to: "I saw this girl in the hall today with a Nirvana shirt on. I asked her what her favorite Nirvana song was. She said, "What are you talking about?" and walked away. SMH." Millennial band, Underoath, whom I have mocked mercilessly for years, even though I personally purchased their final two albums after inheriting my Millennial wife's to that point complete Underoath collection, frequently wear Nirvana shirts. I suspect they do this because they think Nirvana is cool. But I don't think the disaffected apathy that connected me and millions of others to Nirvana in the early 90's registers with them--I think their sheer enthusiasm in regard to Nirvana reveals their ages just as well as their Facebook accounts do.
Hey, Nevermind is a great album. I've got a great deal left to say about Gen X and Millennials, but I've got two more reviews to say it. Let's get to this 49-minute masterpiece.
Completely ignoring it's genre and subject matter, Nevermind checks off my "Great Album" boxes: (time for another colon break!)
A perfectly paced diversity of tempos. Variety in sound. A genuine emotional arc. Kinetic energy.
Not ignoring its genre and subject matter, Nevermind is essentially perfect.
Nevermind begins with the kick in the pants of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," summing up the album, the band, and on a really general level, a generation, with the lyric

I found it hard, it was hard to find/Oh well, whatever, nevermind

But what I REALLY like is the quiet atmosphere of the verses, with Cobain minimalistically picking out two chorus effect-laden notes, as the bass and drums drive steady, before the atmosphere explodes in the choruses and fully blossomsin the guitar solo bridge.
I love how "Smells Like Teen Spirit" is immediately followed by the steady, no-nonsense Bloom, and the slower, even more atmospheric "Come as You Are," which takes Cobain's use of a chorus effects pedal (which makes his guitar sound like it's underwater) to the maximum (the video director certainly agreed, making water a key visual component)

And there you have it, boom, boom, boom, three timeless singles one after the other, and the album has just started. Nevermind then wisely does what any album beginning with three popular singles should--immediately follow them with a fast-paced rager, a role "Breed" embodies perfectly. And then it's single time once more.
"Lithium" highlights Nevermind's quiet-to-loud dynamic better than perhaps any Nirvana track, and I must admit, with all my raging junior-high chemicals boiling around, gave me the most emotion back in the day. Day in my back. Get off my lawn. I'm not gonna crack. ...Let's just quickly hit every song.
"Polly" is the softest one Nirvana recorded, yet it is suitably dark, especially the faux-misogynistic lyrics. "Territorial Pissings" is the loud, violent counterpoint to "Polly." "Drain You" finds the balance between both, and it's got a great atmospheric, brooding bridge. If you haven't got the memo yet, I am, and have always been a fan of atmosphere. The mid-tempo "Lounge Act" gives the feeling that some impending end is coming. "Stay Away" is one last shot of aggression. "On a Plain" is the final calm before the storm, a false sense of security, and a great listen. "Something in the Way" is the slow, brooding storm, mostly guitar, a cello, and Cobain's desperate voice singing of dark isolation. After the generationally inclusive start of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," it's fitting that Nevermind ends with Cobain, bleak and alone.

1991 DGC
1. Smells Like Teen Spirit 5:01
2. In Bloom 4:14
3. Come as You Are 3:39
4. Breed 3:03
5. Lithium 4:17
6. Polly 2:57
7. Territorial Pissings 2:22
8. Drain You 3:43
9. Lounge Act 2:36
10. Stay Away 3:32
11. On a Plain 3:16
12. Something in the Way 3:46

Monday, July 11, 2016

Nirvana -- Bleach


7/10

According to the date ranges on this sociological study (and Wikipedia, too), I am a member of Generation X, though I already knew that because
A. I have identified with this sub-group and its prevailing attitudes my entire life.
B. I have experienced most of the cultural touchstones of that subgroup.
C. I felt incredibly powerful "get-off-my lawn" sentiments toward all of the millennials who suddenly burst on the scene from some cave somewhere fully grown circa 2004, with their Underoath and The Killers t-shirts, and their overuse of the terms "amazing" and "scene."
Most apt for this review, though, I can remember a time in music before Nirvana existed, and also that that time, even right before Nirvana' emergence in 1989, was not bad.
The 80's produced plenty of awesome albums, with two of my favorite rock bands, Echo and the Bunnymen and U2 (unarguably a rock band in the 80's) putting out nearly ten great ones collectively between only the two of them.
Music wasn't dead, and rock-and-roll certainly wasn't dead, but Nirvana certainly did come along and offer something different.
But what?
I'll try to explain that over the next four reviews, but to distill it early on, I think it's more of an attitude than anything. You can bring this right back to generational conflict, between the previous generation, The Baby Boomers (born between WWII and the early sixties, Generation X (my generation), and those dang millennials (born between the mid 80's and the first George W Bush Administration).
Nirvana is often described as sounding the death knell for hair metal. Hair Metal is a very image-focused genre, with band members often wearing tights and ridiculously coiffed, oversize hairstyles. The music often seemed to focus on technical displays, such as guitar solos, and very shallow subject matter, generally getting laid, trying to get laid, and being awesome. From many band members retrospective autobiographies, it appears that, with the aid of their music, getting laid was never much of a problem (though the whole "being awesome" thing is arguable).
Hair Metal is the logical endpoint for the Baby Boomers. Boomers as a whole, are known for being the very self-focused generation that attempted to "find themselves," at perilous cost, as the next generation, X, are often referred to as "latchkey kids," or kids who had to raise themselves while their parents were out doing that. What's more self-focused than dolling yourself up, getting on a stage in front of everyone, and trying to show everyone how awesome you are?
So you have the Boomers, who mainly care about themselves, and skipping ahead, you have the Millennials, who if you haven't yet heard through the social media outlets they have utilized throughout their existence, care about absolutely EVERYTHING. In the middle of that, you have the X'ers, who as reputation would have it, don't care about anything. That's not necessarily true, and yet it is true in a way that is difficult to put into words. Apathy is a word that gets tossed at Generation X a lot, but the truth of it is, X just doesn't care about the attention. X has less faith in the power of institutions, and the power of humanity in general, which can lead to cynicism at worst. and a profound sense of realism at best.
Millennials think they can save the world with a tweet. Baby Boomers don't care as much about the rest of the world, as much as they care about saving themselves if they can just get a little more.
We (X) don't see much sense in either point of view. History shows that something as mundane as a tweet is not going to stop India from nuking Pakistan. Putting just a little bit more money in your 401K isn't going to stop the world from ending, either. If this sounds cynical, so be it. It's also true.
This point of view doesn't lend itself to taking the stage after spending half the day bathing in hairspray and stuffing yourself into a neon spandex bodysuit to sing songs to screaming ladies who will fight each other to get backstage with you after the show.. It lends itself to wearing baggy clothes that don't draw any attention, while your hair falls nondescript over your face, as you try, somehow, to articulate the complex feelings detailed above. That's what Nirvana did.
That's also why "grunge" is a difficult qualifier.
Bleach, Nirvana's first album, sounds "grungy" because Nirvana's record label expected their bands to sound that way (Cobain later claimed he was repressing his more, uh...distinctive natures while recording this album). Grunge, though, doesn't really mean anything. It's kind of dark rock music, full of angst, and barely-if-at-all concealed anger. Speaking of barely-if-at-all concealed anger:
Not wanting to be in the spotlight is one of the key characteristics of Gen X, directly contrasting with the "Hey, look what I did" of Baby Boomers' popular art, and the Millennials rather unfortunate social media feeds. It's also, unfortunately, why we are on the whole not as successful as our predecessors, or successors. I can't even articulate how frustrating it's been to live my life thinking "Nah, that won't work. Might as well not even try," only to see the kids immediately following me enthusiastically, and confidently saying, "This will work, and I will do it!" and succeeding! Had Kurt Cobain been born twenty years later, I don't think he would have ever committed suicide. He'd be on his tenth album, and have a damn organic, gluten-free vegetarian restaurant on the side (which, naturally, would have somehow cured his debilitating stomach pains). Ugh. I can't stand you guys, and it's only because I am jealous of your success and confidence. Why do you always think everything is going to be okay? Why do you think that you can do anything that you can set your mind to? Don't you know that you can't trust the man, and that dreams don't really come true? YOU THINK YOU CAN DO THESE THINGS, NEMO, BUT YOU CAN'T!!!
Okay, now that I've purged that from my system (I'm lying, I haven't), back to Nirvana's 1989 debut, Bleach.
Bleach doesn't sound much like Nirvana's other albums, but neither do Nirvana's other albums. Bleach certainly contains a more primordial sound, sometimes even akin to metal.
I'm not even about to comment on Seattle's late 80's grunge scene, being from rural South Louisiana. My only exposure to bands from that time period with that descriptor are Nirvana (and from the early 90's, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, Soundgarden, etc.) because that was the only music of that sort available to me. I also won't act like I am cooler than the majority of Nirvana fans who were first introduced to Nirvana through their second album, Nevermind, because I was introduced to Nirvana through Nevermind. I don't have any late 80's "grunge" to compare this to. I only have the rest of Nirvana's discography, and compared to that, Bleach is fuzzier, rawer. "thuddier," and a lot less memorable, with less reliance on hooks, and less sophisticated drumming. It also has a metal influence their other albums don't have. Track six, "Paper Cuts," might as well be a Metallica song from the same year.
There's a certain heaviness here that Nirvana never dropped, but that is certainly more pronounced on Bleach--hard rock vocals Cobain himself refers to as "screaming," and a generally sluggish tempo, which goes along with the totally-a-word-I-don't-care-what-you-say-spellcheck descriptor "thuddier.". And it's fun. Don't forget about that part. Fun, but not particularly memorable.
One song does rise above the fray, and that is "About a Girl," which hints at Nirvana's later development, with a bit more depth in the guitar tone, and a definite hook (and a guitar solo, which some people forget Nirvana had, even on this album). It's no wonder this song made the cut on the MTV Unplugged album the band released five years later. It has staying power.
And so does Nirvana.
To be continued (bailiwick and all)...


1989 Sub Pop
1. Blew 2:55
2. Floyd the Barber 2:18
3. About a Girl 2:48
4. School 2:42
5. Love Buzz 3:35
6. Paper Cuts 4:06
7. Negative Creep 2:56
8. Scoff 4:10
9. Swap Meet 3:03
10. Mr. Moustache 3:24
11. Sifting 5:22

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Generational Divide


It has been way too long since my last post, and I hate to watch my page visits shrink, but the past couple weeks' inactivity has been unavoidable.
My life has somehow become even busier, with traveling, a new computer system unveiling at work, and foot surgery all derailing my plans for consistent blogging...not to mention the other three blogs I am attempting to run pulling at my attentions. However, another factor in the publishing lull has delayed my posts more than all other factors combined.
A few weeks ago, I began writing drafts for Nicsperiment reviews of Nirvana's short discography. Rather unexpectedly, the reviews quickly morphed into an exploration into my standing as a member of Generation X, the emergence of Millennials, and the shadow of the Baby Boomers. In other words, things got complicated. My review for Nirvana's debut album, Bleach, could have easily been one paragraph...but now it is significantly longer than that...and growing.
So coming over the next few days and weeks, and most likely encapsulating the entire month of July:
Four Nirvana album reviews that read more like an overly long sociology report.
You're welcome, The Internet (which didn't exist in a public capacity when I was growing up...but more on that to come!)!