Nirvana

Formed January 1988. Disbanded 5 April 1994.

90s US grunge band

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Nirvana band members talk to Zane about Nevermind

Nirvana band members talk to Zane about Nevermind.

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Biography

Nirvana was an American rock band formed by singer/guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic in Aberdeen, Washington in 1987. Nirvana went through a succession of drummers, the longest-lasting being Dave Grohl, who joined the band in 1990. Despite releasing only three full-length studio albums in their seven-year career, Nirvana has come to be regarded as one of the most influential and important rock bands of the modern era.

In the late 1980s Nirvana established itself as part of the Seattle grunge scene, releasing its first album Bleach for the independent record label Sub Pop in 1989. The band eventually came to develop a sound that relied on dynamic contrasts, often between quiet verses and loud, heavy choruses. After signing to major label DGC Records, Nirvana found unexpected success with "Smells Like Teen Spirit", the first single from the band's second album Nevermind (1991). Nirvana's sudden success widely popularized alternative rock as a whole, and the band's frontman Cobain found himself referred to in the media as the "spokesman of a generation", with Nirvana being considered the "flagship band" of Generation X. Nirvana's third and final studio album, In Utero (1993), featured an abrasive, less-mainstream sound and challenged the group's audience. The album did not match the sales figures of Nevermind but was still a critical and commercial success. Nirvana's brief run ended following the death of Kurt Cobain in 1994, but various posthumous releases have been issued since, overseen by Novoselic, Grohl, and Cobain's widow Courtney Love.

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BBC Reviews

  1. Review of Nevermind (20th Anniversary Boxset)

    Nevermind (20th Anniversary Boxset) 2011

    Reviewed by Mike Diver
    The guts and glory of one of rock’s landmark albums revealed across four CDs.
  2. Review of Bleach: Deluxe Edition

    Bleach: Deluxe Edition 2009

    Reviewed by Mike Diver
    An unheard live set makes this album worth investing in again.
  3. Review of Live at Reading

    Live at Reading 2009

    Reviewed by Stevie Chick
    Nirvana’s triumphant final UK performance finally released as a live album.
  4. Review of MTV Unplugged In New York

    MTV Unplugged In New York 1994

    Reviewed by Sid Smith
    ...has a slightly hollow ring to it.
  5. Review of In Utero

    In Utero 1993

    Reviewed by Eamonn Stack
    This is Kurt letting us under his drug addled, membrane-thin skin...
  6. Review of Nevermind

    Nevermind 1991

    Reviewed by Lou Thomas
    A flawed classic, but a classic nonetheless.
  7. Review of Bleach

    Bleach 1989

    Reviewed by Anthony Leaver
    ...some Nirvana die-hards argue that Bleach is Nirvana’s finest work.
  8. Review of Nirvana

    Nirvana

    Reviewed by Amy McAuliffe
    'You Know You're Right' is a poignant reminder of what might have been...listening to...