Nirvana came into pop culture, turned the shit on its head, and left way too early. With their catchy yet dark major label debut Nevermind, the band catapulted into mega stardom. Not only was Nirvana a massive success when it came to the charts (Nevermind went diamond in the US), they were able to reach teens on a very personal and genuine level. Suburbanites from broken homes, the disenfranchised, lonely outcasts; nearly everyone could relate to Kurt Cobain — the short, nerdy kid from Aberdeen, Washington — in some capacity.
That’s what made it so crushing when he took his own life. Cobain had become an idol, a king of the pariahs. Whether or not this was his intention (it most likely was not) he provided a glimpse of hope for fucked up kids. When Cobain committed suicide he subsequently snatched that hope away. All of those fans, practically worshippers, were left empty handed. Their leader had abandoned them.
It’s been 20 years since Cobain’s death and every April we revisit his music and achievements. This year is particularly special because the remaining members of Nirvana are being inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on April 10. Despite the sadness that comes with death, especially a suicide, we can still celebrate the music that Cobain created while alive.
Of course everyone knows Nirvana’s popular radio hits; “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” “All Apologies,” and “Come As You Are”; but Nirvana’s rarities and B-sides are just as compelling, in some instances more so, than their popular counterparts. In celebration of Kurt Cobain’s life here are five Nirvana songs that you may not have heard but will surely enjoy.
“Love Buzz” Bleach
“Oh The Guilt”