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20 Years of Nevermind

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Britany Lincicum
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« on: October 16, 2011, 11:34:18 pm »

20 Years of Nevermind


On Sept. 24, 1991, Nirvana launched its breakthrough album, Nevermind. To mark the release of Mark Yarm's hugely entertaining Everybody Loves Our Town: An Oral History of Grunge as well as the deluxe twentieth-anniversary box set edition of Nevermind (out Sept. 27), TIME takes a look at Nirvana's small but stunning video corpus from the band's two-and-a-half years in the spotlight



1. 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' (1991)
By Jessica Winter Thursday, Sept. 22, 2011

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2094454_2094447_2094413,00.html #ixzz1b0hxBkZG

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Britany Lincicum
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« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2011, 11:36:01 pm »



There are few couplets that encapsulate the adolescent existential condition as perfectly as "I feel stupid and contagious / Here we are now, entertain us." So it's fitting that the 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' video is staged as a high-school pep rally of the damned, with a rowdy audience enlisted from an L.A. Nirvana show, cheerleaders recruited from a local strip club and a lead singer who needed some form of authority to rebel against — so he chose his director, Samuel Bayer. "Kurt absolutely hated me by the end," Bayer says in Everybody Loves Our Town. But losing control of his client was the best thing that could have happened to Bayer's video. "Somebody came up to me and said, 'Kurt wants to invite the kids down to destroy the set,'" Bayer recalls. "It was this beautiful display of anarchy and destruction."

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2094454_2094447_2094413,00.html #ixzz1b0iSC300

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Britany Lincicum
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« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2011, 11:38:09 pm »



Using a chorus pedal to create an "underwater" guitar effect (also heard on 'Teen Spirit'), "Come As You Are" is an amphibious song, emerging slowly from a submerged state and surging toward its final chorus like some kind of ethereal swamp creature with a waterproof power amp. Directed by Kevin Kerslake, the video conjures that sound with an amniotic wash of lush, solarized images: layer upon layer of translucent impressions (of the band, of cells dividing, of an occasionally bipedal dog in a megaphone collar). After the sewage-toned palette and tiny $30,000 budget for 'Teen Spirit,' this was something far more lovely, more inscrutable, and more handsomely funded, to judge from the untold gallons of water coursing through the soundstage and the massive chandelier that Cobain swings around on. (Don't miss the cat watching the goldfish bowl around 3:21.)
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Britany Lincicum
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« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2011, 11:39:31 pm »



Composed of slow-motion, repetitive live concert footage, Kerslake's second collaboration with the band achieved the near-impossible feat of making a Nirvana show appear to be extremely boring. The viewer should instead track down actual live concert footage of the song — a classic example of Cobain's Pixies-derived, quiet-loud-quiet-really-loud dynamic — such as the rendition at the 1992 Reading festival, where 25-year-old musician Antony Hodgkinson lived out a collective fantasy by dancing onstage with Nirvana (giving himself whiplash in the process). Or watch this performance from the 1992 MTV Video Music Awards, featuring a freshly rehabbed Cobain looking teen-idol adorable in a moptop haircut, Dave Grohl lethally abusing his drums and Krist Novoselic floored by his own instrument after a failed attempt at his patented "sensational bass toss." Hi, Axl!
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Britany Lincicum
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« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2011, 11:40:47 pm »




Despite its retro feel, Kerslake's video also delivered breaking news: Nirvana has a sense of humor! Shot with a vintage Kinescope camera and intercut with footage of shrieking teenyboppers, 'In Bloom' imagines Nirvana as a toothy pop combo on an early-'60s variety show. (Rivers Cuomo of Weezer lifted his entire early-career shtick from Cobain's glassy affect and nerd-chic eyewear here.) But in some alternate reality, they're also members of a rambunctious punk outfit who put on pretty dresses and thrash the set and their equipment. Cobain plays his part with a sort of deranged serenity that's two parts Beach Boy, one part cult leader. There wouldn't be a funnier lip-synch until Zach Galifianakis discovered Kanye West.


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Britany Lincicum
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« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2011, 11:42:00 pm »



The least-seen Nirvana video is also the most endearing. Cobain always downplayed his lyrical gifts, but this raucous vignette about a miserable trip to Grandma's is a painfully funny and accurate distress call from early childhood. Kerslake's video matches the song's claustrophobic, romper-room mania by stuffing the band members into a tiny practice space stocked with anatomical dolls, Mudhoney posters and other Cobainian hoardings. Bonus: the dancing, sneezing baby — who may or may not be playing the role of the video's superego — is one Frances Bean Cobain.
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Britany Lincicum
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« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2011, 11:42:54 pm »



Anton Corbijn's video for the first single off Nirvana's coruscating final studio album, In Utero, is a masterpiece (and included on our list of The 30 All-TIME Best Music Videos). But anyone with Nirvana nostalgia should also check out the version from Nirvana Live and Loud (available in its entirety on DVD and on YouTube), filmed at a December 1993 Seattle concert and aired on MTV that New Year's Eve. Remember what Bono said about Nirvana "splitting the atom"? They do it on every single song on the astonishing Live and Loud — and Dave Grohl does it every time his drumsticks pummel their target. It's difficult to believe that a band so vital, so confrontationally perfect, would no longer exist less than four months later.
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Britany Lincicum
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« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2011, 11:43:54 pm »




'All Apologies' is almost a microcosm of a Nirvana track, with its quiet/loud pendulum swings, its ideal balance of punk and pop, its earnestly Kurt-like homophilia ("Everyone is gay") and its self-loathing made vivid and tactile ("Aqua seafoam shame"; "Found my nest of salt / Everything is my fault"). It even offered up a choice couplet for those many fans who lamented Cobain's connubial judgment ("I'm married / Buried"). 'All Apologies' was also, as it turned out, an exquisite and terribly sad valedictory from Cobain and for Nirvana, with MTV putting the acoustic version from the band's melancholy Unplugged performance into heavy rotation after Cobain's death in April 1994. They say that Generations X and Y lack rituals for death and mourning, but this rueful farewell is close to one. Whenever somebody dies, I play this song.

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2094454_2094447_2094423,00.html #ixzz1b0kV5sdf
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Volitzer
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« Reply #8 on: October 17, 2011, 04:17:31 pm »

You should hear the similarieties between Nirvana's "Breed".



and Queen's "Sheer Heart Attack."



You can definitely hear Queen's influence on Kurt's writing.
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