Nirvana - Were They Really That Special? - U2 Feedback

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Old 01-25-2009, 07:48 PM   #1
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Nirvana - Were They Really That Special?

Sorry if there was a Nirvana thread but i searched and could not find it

I have listened to Nirvana a bit recently. I thought i'd give them another go

Here are my thoughts

1) They have never appealed to me as i feel uncomfortable listening to the music of a guy who killed himself, as i think thats a terrible thing to do. I guess it has clouded how i see their music. If i was old enough to like them at the time perhaps i would have felt differently. I find their music so dark and depressing. It just makes me feel odd. The whole Cobain death thing i cannot disassociate from the tunes.

2) I dont like how the death of Cobain has been glorified as it if is was a great act. This maybe from personal experience but when i was at school kids as young as 11 wore Nirvana hooded tops. To me i thought why? You probably dont even know another song past Smells Like Teen Spirit. It was always the emo/goth/middle class kids trying to act rebellious wearing these tops. When i spoke to them they always seemed so depressed. And listening to this band would not have helped. I dont like how someone who completely lost control of their life is revered so well

3)I have never liked grunge. I can only digest about 5 Smashing Pumpkins tunes and i need to give Pearl Jam another go, but once again from what i have heard i find it dull. Perhaps its an American thing? Just like some American dont get British bands i dont get these bands at all. I like my music to be more uplifting and jolly!

4) Being the cynic that i am i feel as though if Cobain was still alive, Nirvana would not have such a big legacy.

5) Now concentrating on the tunes, i am not very impressed. I find their music to dark (those bass lines freak me out). I can only digest these songs, About A Girl, In Bloom and sometimes Heart Shaped Box (just as it sounds ok, when i concentrate on the lyrics it puts me off, and the video is weird) Lithium sounds ok to but once again the lyrics are to dark. But as a general rock tune, its not bad.

If i had kids, i'd ban them from Nirvana

6) I dont get Cobain's sense of humour
This is dreadful

YouTube - Nirvana-I hate Myself and Want To Die Lyrics

Now its you turn to speak (I expect a backlash)
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Old 01-25-2009, 08:01 PM   #2
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Nirvana > Oasis, even if they are overrated.

And you deserve more than a backlash.
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Old 01-25-2009, 08:02 PM   #3
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Were they that good? No. But as the most visible of that big wave grunge bands (mostly thanks to Cobain's celebrity), their cultural importance outweighs their actual music. I don't like any of their stuff, but I understand why they're so heralded.

But yeah, they were better than Oasis.
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Old 01-25-2009, 08:04 PM   #4
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Its funny how recently i dont even have to mention Oasis yet everyone else does

Obviously i disagree
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Old 01-25-2009, 08:05 PM   #5
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Oasis is better than the Fray. I'll give you that.
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Old 01-25-2009, 08:08 PM   #6
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WTF

This is meant to be about Nirvana, there are no other threads about them!
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Old 01-25-2009, 08:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadForIt View Post
i feel as though if Cobain was still alive, Nirvana would not have such a big legacy.
This is ridiculously true, but you need to bear in mind that this isn't Nirvana's (or Cobain's) fault. It's just how things go. I mean, does anybody remember that by the time Hendrix died, he'd already gone years without actually recording any great music? No, because he died. So it goes. Lennon spent what wound up being more than half of his own career (in terms of years, not output) churning out pretty intolerable stuff, too. Death is a strange thing to deal with, when it comes to fame and/or notoriety.

Anyway, as far as the bigger picture goes, I don't think that Nirvana was a great band. I do, however, think that Nirvana was a pretty good band which had moments which went beyond greatness. I also think that this pretty good band released one fantastic, and fantastically important, record (Nevermind).

Nirvana gets way, way, way too much credit for a lot of things, and Cobain didn't actually do very much for me (other than introduce me to Daniel Johnston, Shonen Knife, The Pixies, and The Shaggs, aka Worst Band Ever) or for the "art" of guitar playing, but Nevermind holds up remarkably well, about two decades later, and it's not like The Beatles were shredding up a storm, either, back in the day.
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Old 01-25-2009, 09:24 PM   #8
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In Utero was a very unique and interesting record. Nevermind has some truly great moments but mostly just feels bland to me. The little I've heard from Bleach did nothing for me.

So overall, yeah, I'm not much of a Nirvana fan. I'll just leave it at that.
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Old 01-25-2009, 10:10 PM   #9
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Nirvana: I think was a great band. But NOT the gods they are often made to be these days.

I do think they often get too much credit for killing hair metal bands and starting the "grunge" movement. I think they were part of something great, they just happened to be at the right place at a slightly better time.

That being said they took the best parts of 70's rock, punk, and pop sensibilities and made some great songs and good albums. Cobain himself in interviews talked about how a good melody or hook was important and something people connect to, which was a little out of step with his art rock and punk influences, but I think that was part of what stood them apart.

Kurt obviously made some bad choices, but it would have been interesting to see what he could have done. Would Nirvana have stayed together awhile longer, would they evolve, there were rumors that he wanted to make an album with Michael Stipe, we'll never know.

RIP
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Old 01-25-2009, 11:01 PM   #10
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Everybody imitated Nirvana and that grundge guitar style so the entire sound was driven into the ground so people couldn't hear it anymore.
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Old 01-25-2009, 11:04 PM   #11
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they captured an attitude that was prevalent at the time with music, and got a lot of momentum from that... after which, there's really no accounting for taste.
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Old 01-25-2009, 11:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BonoVoxSupastar View Post
Nirvana: I think was a great band. But NOT the gods they are often made to be these days.

I do think they often get too much credit for killing hair metal bands and starting the "grunge" movement. I think they were part of something great, they just happened to be at the right place at a slightly better time.

That being said they took the best parts of 70's rock, punk, and pop sensibilities and made some great songs and good albums. Cobain himself in interviews talked about how a good melody or hook was important and something people connect to, which was a little out of step with his art rock and punk influences, but I think that was part of what stood them apart.

Kurt obviously made some bad choices, but it would have been interesting to see what he could have done. Would Nirvana have stayed together awhile longer, would they evolve, there were rumors that he wanted to make an album with Michael Stipe, we'll never know.

RIP
I agree with pretty much everything you've said. I honestly don't get the Nirvana hatred that seems so rampant around this forum. Maybe it's one of those phenomenons you had to live through to experience. That said, I definitely think that the circumstances surrounding Cobain's death led to their current mystique, which takes focus away from the music, sadly.

As far as hooks and melodies go, big agreement there. I remember reading that he was a huge Beatles fan - very mainstream for an alternative guy, but there you go. It shows where some of his pop sensibilities came from. Listen to Nirvana's About a Girl, and The Beatles' Things We Said Today back to back. There are a lot of similarities.
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Old 01-25-2009, 11:22 PM   #13
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Death is a career move
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Old 01-26-2009, 12:03 AM   #14
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I don't want to regurgitate the same thing that's already been said here numerous times, but yes, all celebrities get blown out of proportion by dying early. Similar to what Shouter was saying, even Nirvana themselves were already releasing some (debatably) forgettable material in the later years.

That all said, though I haven't listen to it in ages, Nevermind is fantastic, and completely ruled me musically for a year or two when it came out. While it has been overhyped, you still have to give it some credit. Anyone who is old enough to remember its release probably owned the album, or has some sort of story about it. I can even remember my mom's response to seeing me open the album in the car on the way home, notice a naked baby on the front, and I flip the cover open and Kobain is there flipping me off. Surprisingly, she laughed.
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Old 01-26-2009, 12:19 AM   #15
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Quality band of undeniable importance. I reckon they defined what "rock" was gonna sound like in the 90's and for at least until 2003, yet Nirvana's legend is probably unfairly greater than Pearl Jam's (because of Cobain), even if their music isn't necessarily as good as Pearl Jam's.

For better or worse, without Nirvana there would probably be no giants such as Nickelback, Creed, Matchbox 20, Linkin Park, Live. Hootie, Blink 182, Green Day, Foo Fighters (obviously). Nirvana made "jam" rock fashionable again, commercial again, rock for the fun of it, not to be bombastic (Gunners, BonJovi) or over-conscious urgency to adopt an image. Out with the synth and and in with more guitars. Down to earth rock for rock's sake...

Oasis did the same in the UK.

Nevermind is a bloody solid album. Come As You Are is a bore, but the rest is top-notch.
Lithium, Lounge Act, Teen Spirit, Drain You

Overated by some maybe, but they are still cherished by many millions of people...
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