Tag Archives: Kurt Cobain

Remembering Kurt Cobain

Today, 20th February 2017 would have been the 50th birthday for the music icon. While many today still find his music inspirational, I find it almost hard to believe I am older now than what Kurt ever was and I still find him a massive influence on my musical taste. The world sadly lost Kurt in 1994 when he was just 27 years old, though he showed us so much in his short time. Today I can only imagine many others are honouring Kurt Cobain in their own way. Imagine what the world would be like if Kurt was still here? Would Nirvana still be going strong? Would the Foo Fighters ever have formed? We really will never know.

But in a small tribute, I would like to make a mention of some of the tracks which I grew up to and still love today.

The Best Ever Cover Song?

You know you have covered a song well when even fans of the original artist don’t even know it was actually their song. David Bowie spoke of when people said well done for covering a Nirvana track, not knowing Bowie had released the song over twenty years previously. No disrespect to David Bowie, ‘The Man Who Sold The World’ is indeed a classic on both sides, but Nirvana really gave the song life and still today stands as one of the greatest cover songs ever!!

The Loud Debut!

The first album BLEACH featured many rough and ready tracks, signalling a change in the music we had become accustomed to. Nirvana didn’t know how far their brand of grunge was to take them. While the album is filled with many favourite songs, ‘About A Girl’ is one necessity to start any rock playlist.

The One Everyone Knows!

Of course you know this one, this is the song that put Nirvana to the top. ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ was not only a massive hit worldwide, it helped make the album NEVERMIND a massive seller (over 30 million albums sold). Even Weird Al Yankovic gave this song a parody and the results were fantastic…and Kurt liked the cover too!

The One With The Questionable Title!

How many bands could get away with a track called ‘Rape Me’? Not many! Have you ever dealt with censorship? It isn’t fun! This track from the IN UTERO album earned much praise for being a straightforward song and giving a great anti-rape message. Kurt would also agree that it had more meaning to him personally, but you can’t disagree with the impact this song has.

This One Makes You Rock Out!

I think it has already been said that Nirvana created many great songs. After originally making ‘Lithium’ for a follow-up on their independent label, they eventually re-recorded it for 1991’s NEVERMIND. Kurt said that there was a lot of fictionalised elements in the song, but he did also use real experiences in the album. Plus, it is so damn good!

The fourth album that wasn’t the fourth album!

I am referring to the fantastic MTV Unplugged session that the band recorded in 1993. Taking mostly unreleased songs and covers, the band sculpted a mighty fine performance which today is still enjoyed and studied. So many people are glued to this release and even those who may not be fans of the grunge band still find this release popular.

R.I.P. Kurt Cobain and happy birthday, you will never be forgotten.

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove

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Cobain: Montage Of Heck. “Everybody Wants To Be Hip, Nobody Wants To Be Accepted”

Many may already know the story of Kurt Donald Cobain and know a lot about him. But, Brett Morgen has gone above and beyond to deliver the most intimate experience with the musician who died in 1994. With Courtney Love suggesting the idea in 2007, Brett then spent years creating the vision of a troubled and misunderstood individual who is still seen as a vital part to the music we hear today. We get a great combination of new interviews, old video clips, unseen artwork and notes plus some beautiful animations of Kurt in his younger days from interview tapes. Kurt spent his whole life making art, and we get to see that art from his years as an infant to before he met his untimely end.

The film features interviews with many people from Kurt’s life. These interviews include his sister Kim, his Dad Don Cobain, his mum Wendy O’Conner, Courtney Love and his long-time friend Krist Novoselic. Hearing these people talk about Kurt, giving their frank and honest feelings is very enlightening. We learn a lot more about the musician during his life in the areas that may not be as well documented. Whether it’s from the fact that he smoked marijuana with a group of kids he hated, making his own music mix called ‘Montage Of Heck’ (where the name for the film comes from) and what happened throughout his final years of life including when he took 67 rohypnol’s. It is a brutally honest and frighteningly shocking look at the Nirvana frontman. We get to see videos of him in his home while under the influence of heroin and the effect it had on him.

Many highlights are shown. We get to see the rise of Nirvana, the birth of the NEVERMIND album and also his most precious creation; his daughter Frances Bean Cobain. We also get to hear demos of his songs, rare recordings and more personal audio clips which may not have ever had been heard previously. Though we also see the many struggles these highlights came with. We also begin to feel this pain that Kurt had for many years, a pain in his stomach that he used to numb down with heroin. We see what would become the MTV Unplugged performance and feel the tension to make this show become something historical, and that all important Reading Festival performance in 1992 which cemented Nirvana as a huge band and not wanting to go quietly. We are behind that camera watching Kurt Cobain as he has his life unfolded to us in 132 minutes of gripping film. The home video footage from his parents when he was a kid to when Kurt and Courtney filmed their lives is insightful and personal. They were tortured souls, Kurt did all he could to try and forget the pain.

The film will shock you, it may at times upset you and on the odd occasion you may laugh. The blend of Nirvana music is beautifully layered with performances from demos, studio tracks and covered by other acts. You can see the love that Kurt had, even if he couldn’t love himself. We learn for the first time that Kurt was not a god, a demon or anything other worldly. He was a man, the man who he had to be. He suffered from depression, he loved his family and wanted to make people happy. We may hear a lot about Kurt Cobain through his former band mates Dave Grohl and Krist, his widow Courtney and many others, but nothing prepares you to hear the words from his own mouth. This film will stick with you long after you see that screen say “One month after returning from Rome, Kurt Cobain took his own life. He was 27 years old”.

Final Rating: 10/10

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove

Cobain MOH poster