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[2016-07-30] Guide to Nirvana sights in Aberdeen, Olympia and Seattle
[2015-03-22] Foo Fighters - Sonic Highways DVD/Blu-ray up for pre-order
[2013-09-24] In Utero 20th anniversary release - OUT NOW!
[2011-04-02] Follow NFC on Twitter - @nirvclub - for latest news
|NFC News New exhibit with previously unpublished Charles Peterson photos|
Soulcatcher Studio is very pleased to welcome guest artist Charles Peterson to our gallery for this exclusive exhibition, featuring a selection of previously unpublished images from his vast archive.
Within this retrospective exhibition you will find Peterson's documentation of the Seattle music scene in the late 1980s and 1990s, featuring such well-known bands as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden and many more.
More information here where you can also see the photos.
Thanks to Eric for this story.
|Posted or updated: 04-07-2007 @ 8:12 PM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News Cast Kurt and Courtney|
If Kurt Cobain's life is turned into a biopic, who should play Kurt and Courtney? AOL Music put up a website where you can cast your vote on who you think should be cast. You can find it here. Thanks to Kelly.
|Posted or updated: 04-07-2007 @ 8:10 PM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News Reviews of 4 more unofficial Nirvana DVDs|
I've procured some more unofficial Nirvana DVDs so here's another round of reviews. In case you missed it, don't forget to check out the earlier review of six unofficial Nirvana DVDs.
Title: Rock Milestones: NIRVANA - The Path From Incesticide to In Utero
Released by: Edgehill Publishing, Ltd. ©2006 (Part of Classic Rock Productions)
Runtime: 64 minutes
Bonus material: Image gallery
Audio: Dolby Digital, Dolby 5.1 surround sound, DTS
Cover art: Sleeve - DVD menu - Screenshot
People interviewed: Tommy Udo (Metal Hammer magazine), Keith Cameron (Mojo magazine), Darren Sadler (Rock Sound magazine), Steve Chick (music journalist), Alexander Milas (Kerrang! magazine), Miti Adhikari (producer - worked on some of the songs that ended up on Incesticide).
This DVD is based around commentary from a small panel of British journalists and producer Miti Adhikari. In short, they discuss Nirvana's albums (with the main focus on Nevermind and In Utero) in between footage of Nirvana performing live.
Actually, this DVD contains a lot of original Nirvana music - often with clips longer than 30 seconds. It's the same footage being utilized for other DVDs by Classic Rock Productions. with the exception that this DVD also contains clips of songs from Nirvana's KAOS Radio performance, April, 1987.
The Nirvana footage includes: Rape Me and Heart-Shaped Box (Saturday Night live 1993), Floyd the barber, Sliver, Polly, Aneurysm, Blew and Breed (November 19, 1991 Rome, Italy concert), Drain You and Pennyroyal Tea ('Nulle Part A' performance on French TV, February 1994), Smells Like Teen Spirit and Territorial Pissings (Saturday Night live 1992), Lithium (MTV Video Music Awards 1992), Smells Like Teen Spirit, Breed, Destruction and All Apologies (Reading Festival, UK, 1992), Heart-Shaped Box and Scentless Apprentice (December 13, 1993 MTV Live & Loud concert), Lake of Fire (MTV Unplugged 1993) + audio from 4/17/87 Olympia, WA KAOS Radio performance. There's also clips from a couple of studio tracks, e.g. (New Wave) Polly
As the above list suggests, this DVD contains quite a lot of Nirvana music - somewhat unusual for an unofficial release. Otherwise, there is not much of interest. The interviews are dull and do not bring to life anything other than commentary and personal reflections on Nirvana's releases. It also contains clips from the 1993 MTV Brazil interview with Kurt Cobain and - seperately - Krist and Dave. Interestingly, it also has pro shot footage from Nirvana's legendary 1992 Reading show.
The DVD is part of the "Rock Milestones" series which also includes DVDs about The Ramones, The Beatles, Bob Dylan and many others.
Title: NIRVANA - Behind the Music (the ultimate critical review)
Released by: Edgehill Publishing, Ltd. ©2007 (Part of Classic Rock Productions)
Runtime: 64 minutes
Bonus material: Image gallery. There's also subtitles in 5 languages.
Audio: Dolby Digital, Dolby 5.1 surround sound, DTS
Cover art: Cover - Back cover - DVD menu - Screenshot
People interviewed: Phillip Luce (Aberdeen resident), Alice Wheeler (photographer), Dave Thompson (author), Leland Cobain (Kurt's grandfather), Amy Hanson (journalist), Micole Landrew McFalklind (old friend of Kurt), Paul Fritts and Jeff Burlingame (Kurt Cobain Memorial Committee), Warren Mason (guitar teacher), Dave Reed (Cobain friend and Aberdeen resident) and Charles R. Cross (author and journalist).
Yet another DVD from Classic Rock Productions. This one also comes with an illustrated 70-page booklet, though. The booklet is basically a short bio, and a detailed discography with commentary on all the songs from the studio albums.
The actual DVD contains a rehash of the same footage you can find on the "Inside NIRVANA" and "Rock Review" DVDs released by the same company. Thus, the interview footage used on this DVD is essentially the exact same that you can find on other Nirvana DVDs by Classic Rock. The only difference is more concert and TV footage, and the addition of audio clips from the April, 1987 KAOS Radio performance.
There's no point in listing the Nirvana footage used; it's basically the same as you can find on most of the other Classic Rock DVDs - SNL 1992 and 1993 and the 1991 Rome show.
It seems that Classic Rock Productions like to churn out Nirvana DVDs regularly - using the same core footage - only edited together differently, with slightly different concert and studio footage used (but from the same sources), and in a different packaging. So, if you have one or more of the other DVDs released by them, there's not much reason to pick this one up as well.
By the way, the title of the DVD is greatly misleading as it has no relation whatsoever to the popular VH-1 series of the same name - "Behind the Music". There has not been an official VH-1 "Behind the Music" special on Nirvana produced at this point.
Title: Music Box: A biographical collection - Kurt Cobain
Released by: MVB Films. ©2004
Runtime: 42 minutes
Bonus material: None
Cover art: Sleeve - DVD menu - Screenshot
People interviewed: Warren Mason, Jim Cobain and David Conner.
This DVD is absolutely horrible. It looks like it was thrown together in half an hour after a bad frat party. It has almost a Borat-like resemblance to it, only it's not as funny. The DVD basically consists of a number of still images of Cobain and Nirvana being presented to the viewer, on top of a British narrator eagerly explaining the basic Nirvana story.
There's some short "exclusive" interviews with Warrren Mason along with a couple of totally unknown folks. For some reason, this grainy footage is in black and white and looks like it was shot in the 70s. There's also some footage from around Aberdeen - particularly from 'under the bridge' and, again, it looks like something out of a 1970s documentary on highways or something.
Throughout the whole film, the background music is basically the same guitar and drum part played over and over again, and it serves as a constant distraction to the rest of the mess that is this DVD. There's also reproductions, in awful quality, of various Nirvana interviews from MTV.
Avoid this one at all costs!
Title: The Nevermind Year
Released by: Manifestation Television. ©2003
Runtime: 46 minutes
Bonus material: Extra footage, stills, subtitles, credits and director commentary
Cover art: Sleeve - DVD menu - Screenshot
This is actually not a Nirvana or Kurt Cobain documentary. Instead, it is a movie about Steven James May as he attempts to "explore the relationship between the suicide of [..] Cobain and May's own quest for fulfillment in his 28th year."
If that description sounds somewhat vague, I'm afraid it's difficult to come up with a much better one.
The film basically follows Steven around, beginning with his 27th birthday flipping through old clippings with Nirvana magazine covers and such, and culminating around a year later. In the meantime, you see Steven talk about his life and what he's going through with family and friends, as well as a Nirvana fan he met through a posting on this very website.
The climax, if you will, of the film is probably when Steven descends upon Seattle and finds himself meditating outside the former home of Kurt Cobain on Lake Washington Blvd. Here, he meets a fellow who apparently resides at the house and gets him to open the gates, if only for a moment. Some great shots then capture the beautiful home and the location of the since torn-down garage where Cobain died.
Basically, though, there's not a whole lot to say about this film. While the director commentary, exclusive to this well-produced DVD, helps explain Stevens motivation behind a lot of what goes on in the film and how it came together, it's still a project that is difficult for an outsider to fully appreciate. Ultimately, it seems to have served as an almost carthatic and positive process for Steven to have filmed all this footage of his life and produce this film. For that reason alone it is an interesting and admirable piece of work.
But for anyone not closely associated with the film, it is hard to locate its appeal and purpuse, and its artistic and creative vision is a bit too obscure for me to penetrate. It's certainly possible that other Kurt Cobain fans can relate to Steven's story, however, and would find it fascinating to see what he went through in his life when this movie was shot and when he was trying to make sense of his life when he reached the age of his fallen hero. Perhaps there's a little bit of Steven May and his quest in all of us.
More info at www.nevermindyear.tv.
|Posted or updated: 04-07-2007 @ 8:05 PM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News Nirvana interview footage now online + more|
The Boston Phoenix submitted this: "Just wanted to draw your attention to a couple of interviews with Nirvana that we recently republished and might be of interest to Nirvana fans; these articles have been out of circulation for over a decade.
There's a long Q&A with Dave, Krist, and Kurt that has an interesting provenance – the interview comes from 1991, and was conducted over the same weekend that the band played SNL and taped their MTV performance. The interviewer was Kurt St. Thomas, who was then the program director of the Boston alternative rock station WFNX, and he had a pretty good repertoire with the band because he'd world-premiered 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' on the radio in the summer of '91.
Geffen commissioned the interview for a CD that was sent to radio stations, but there was a lot of material that never made it onto that CD.
In 1994, when Kurt OD'd in Rome, St. Thomas dug up the tapes and sent them to us. We published the interview then, but it has never been available online until now. You can find it here.
And here's a sidebar of quotes from Kurt that ended up on the cutting room floor: link.
We also unearthed a rare piece of Nirvana memorabilia: a pair of faxes that were sent to the newspaper by Kurt and Courtney in 1993. There's a bit of a backstory to why they faxed us, which is available here.
The short version is that we'd run an interview with Mary Lou Lord in early-1993 where she talked about her relationship with Kurt back in 1991, just as Nevermind was exploding. Later in 1993, Courtney got wind of the article and phoned us up, apparently drunk, then sent the faxes (they're in her handwriting but signed by Kurt) in which Kurt claimed it had only been a one-night stand. (Everett True has a different recollection in his new Nirvana: The Biography. We excerpted the relevant section here).
The authenticity of the faxes was confirmed by Courtney's publicists at the time – they'd begged her not to send them, but she ignored their advice and sent them anyway.
Although the faxes were mostly about that episode, they also have a wider relevance: for one thing, one of the faxes claimed that Mary Lou was the inspiration for 'Rape Me'.
At the time the faxes were sent, Kurt and Courtney were in the national news because Courtney had reportedly left Kurt for having guns in the house. Although our article hadn't talked about that at all, Kurt included a cryptic line in one of the faxes that said, 'I’ve got three guns now, OK?' You can read the faxes and the article we published about them here (again, this has never been online until this week): here.
And if you’re interested, the original profile of Mary Lou, in which she talks candidly about her relationship with Kurt, is available here."
A huge thanks to Carly and the Boston Phoenix for this!
|Posted or updated: 04-03-2007 @ 2:25 PM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News NFC reviews "About a Son"|
AJ Schnack's new film About a Son is by no means a Nirvana documentary. In fact, the word "Nirvana" is only spoken once in the entire film, and it comes up when Cobain is talking about his plans to work with other musicians, jamming with his wife, etc. It contains no Nirvana music or concert footage, and no other interviews.
It is even difficult to call it a Kurt Cobain documentary which would instantly allude to the existing range of Cobain docs and bios. No, this is a very different portrayal. It can best be classified as a solid mix of clips from a personal interview with a person who would go on to become the biggest rock star in the world.
The interview clips - the 'narration' provided by Cobain throughout the entire film - provides an entirely new, fresh perspective of a person that was just that - a regular human being. In every other biography and documentary, Cobain is made out to be this larger-than-life Rock God who had a troubled life (bad childhood, drugs, unwanted fame) and who eventually blew his brains out. The classic rock star cliché.
But with this movie, you spend some 90 minutes in the company of a man who, for one, comes off as a very likeable and pleasant person. He's frank and very self-aware, but also positive and even upbeat at times. Perhaps most surprisingly, he's funny! Cobain's sense of humor has rarely been exposed in other arenas, and he tells a number of quite amusing stories.
The aura surrounding him is brought down to earth and, indeed, as director AJ Schnack told me in an interview last year, the main objective of this project is attempting to tear away his iconic and mythical status, and just expose the human being Kurt Cobain. This is definitely achieved. In addition, while the documentary is not particularly focused on Nirvana as I mentioned initially, you do get a broad insight into his inspiration as a musician and how everything started. It's also fun to get a definite, straight from the horses's mouth source of some of the facts and stories that you'll find in pretty much any Nirvana bio - for example how Kurt wanted to start a band with Krist, and how he gave him a copy of the 'Fecal Matter' tape.
To sum up, the interview footage, while varying a lot in quality and occasionally disturbed by Kurt's chewing on something, or constant background noise, seems to have been very skillfully selected and edited.
Now, as for the visual side, and the aspect that makes this a movie in the first place - there is less to say. The good part is that a lot of Charles Peterson's classic photography is displayed throughout, especially near the end of the film. The rest of the time, the visual side (often still imagery) is more or less supposed to reflect what Kurt is talking about. All the footage you see is shot in Aberdeen, Olympia and Seattle, Washington. It shows various places around those cities that are important to the Cobain story, for example Kurt's old high school and the KAOS Radio station, and it shows people currently residing and working in those places.
For the most part, though, at least to me the footage seemed unnecessary and downright silly at times. There were moments where it even became annoying and distracting to watch the visual side and you felt tempted to close your eyes and focus on Kurt's voice instead. But ultimately it works out, since the images only serve as a backdrop to the real focus of the film - Kurt's voice which should be the center of attention. It's almost like one of those educational movies where the narrator's voice is the most essential and the visual side only serves as a helper to underscore and demonstrate what is being said. A fancy Powerpoint presentation if you will!
Personally, though, the visual side is probably a bit artsy for my taste (perhaps underlined by the fact that I despised Last Days) and I would probably have been equally pleased by this project if it had come out in the form of interview CDs. That being said, it's a very fresh and creative take on the Cobain story and it's great that this remarkable interview footage is released in some form.
It's definitely worth - if not a watch - then at least a listen, for any fan of Nirvana or Cobain.
|Posted or updated: 04-03-2007 @ 2:15 PM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News Kurt Cobain action figure ... now with sound!|
Apparently the Kurt Cobain action figure is now equipped with sound as well, and available for pre-order. More info here. Thanks to Justin for the tip.
|Posted or updated: 04-01-2007 @ 9:04 AM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News "Icons of Music" auction features Nirvana MTV Award|
The auction event will offer one of the most significant collections of music memorabilia from many of music's greatest legends with proceeds benefiting Music Rising (www.musicrising.org), a campaign co-founded by The Edge, producer Bob Ezrin and Gibson Guitar Chairman and CEO Henry Juszkiewicz in 2005 to aid musicians of the Gulf Coast Region in regaining their livelihood after the devastation of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.
The live and online auction, hosted by Julien's Auctions, will be offering approximately 200 pieces of music memorabilia, much of which has been specifically donated for this cause."
Read more here.
More info about the Nirvana-related item: "MTV 'Moon-Man' video music award for Best Alternative Video 1993-1994 [to Nirvana], mounted on circular base, MTV flag is absent. Awarded on September 8, 1994 five months after the death of Kurt Cobain.Height 12 inches." You can view the auction here. The starting bid is $2,000 and it is expected to go for $4,000 to $6,000.
Highlights from the Icon’s of Music auction will be previewed in special exhibits at:
See all the items of the auction here.
|Posted or updated: 04-01-2007 @ 9:02 AM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News Nevermind ... with a zombie twist!|
The two writers of the comic book, Leah Moore and John Reppion, are also huge Nirvana fans. Some more info about the issue of this comic book:
"The first ever zombie story from Dynamite that puts the 'living' into the 'living dead' concludes here in issue #4 of Raise the Dead! Guided by writers John Reppion and Leah Moore and artist Hugo Petrus, Raise the dead sets the stage for all new undead tales and the debut of a startling new character - Dr. Jones - whose ultimate fate is decided in this concluding issue!"
The comic book will be published in June, but you can pre-order it here. Thanks to John for the tip.
|Posted or updated: 04-01-2007 @ 8:38 AM (GMT) by RH.|
|NFC News Reviews of 'Nevermind Dance' production|
|Posted or updated: 04-01-2007 @ 8:25 AM (GMT) by RH.|
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