Today’s selection from my collection is just so bloody good. This album has appeared in so many charts down the years and musically minded people’s top lists, and rightly so.
Kurt Cobain left us on 5th April 1994, aged just 27, he also left such a hole in the world of music. This particular album is 30 this year and still to this day packs one of the biggest punches ever.
Despite his uncomfortable relationship with the media, he always wanted his band’s music to be appreciated on a global scale, no-one could argue that he certainly achieved this with Nevermind’s sales now topping 30 million copies worldwide – he got his wish in creating one of the best-selling rock albums in history.
Kurt’s raw vocals on this album are filled with the emotion of someone hurting, and those of a tormented soul. I have listened to this record a hell of a lot over the years and have been through periods of deep fixation with it, I still get goosebumps when the richness of his tone cuts through on a song such as ‘Lithium’ which takes you on a journey of moods, beginning with his soft verses, through to heavy and angry choruses and then a vocal bridge that crashes in with such a level of utter confidence and attitude. It’s like 3 weather seasons in one song.
There are so many big moments on Nevermind, from the hardcore punklike and completely in yer face ‘Territorial Pissings’ and ‘Stay Away’ through to the stunning and subdued ‘Something In The Way’, this is before you begin to talk about monumental songs such as ‘Smells Like Teen Sprit’ which is THE definitive grunge rock anthem of all time and ‘Come As You Are’ which takes you on a beautiful cruise-ship journey to stoner rock heaven. The first 5 songs on this LP actually drop in sequence on such a heavyweight scale that you very rarely find at this level on an album, certainly not these days anyway.
Cobain’s vocals aren’t 100% perfect on this record and have many flaws that other bands would have took and re-took multiple times to get perfect, this rawness contributes to the absolute and sheer beauty of this album for me. The mix and audio mastering of the tracks is so crazily big and every track just stomach punches you.
This is one of those albums that I believe every person on planet earth should listen to at least once in it’s entirety before they die, casting aside any preconceptions they may have for 49 minutes and whilst trying to get inside the head of it’s creator. Therein lies the story of a troubled young man and the angst that he channelled via the brilliant songs that he wrote.
I’ve got a two hour car journey ahead tonight so I’m going to absolutely hammer this on the way back in tribute.
An absolute stone cold killer record on every possible level for me.