Music > Artists > Rock

Nirvana, Nirvana


October 29th, 2002

1987 in Aberdeen, WA


Years Active:
'80s, '90s


Sub Pop
Sub Pop



Prior to Nirvana, alternative music was consigned to specialty sections of record stores, and major labels considered it to be, at the very most, a tax write-off. After the band's second album, 1991's Nevermind, nothing was ever quite the same, for better and for worse. Nirvana popularized punk, post-punk, and indie rock, unintentionally bringing it into the American mainstream like no other band to date. While their sound was equal parts Black Sabbath (as learned by fellow Washington underground rockers the Melvins) and Cheap Trick, Nirvana's aesthetics were strictly indie rock. They covered Vaselines songs, they revived new wave cuts by Devo, and leader Kurt Cobain relentlessly pushed his favorite bands — whether it was the art punk of the Raincoats or the country-fried hardcore of the Meat Puppets — as if his favorite records were always more important than his own music. While Nirvana's ideology was indie rock and their melodies were pop, the sonic rush of their records and live shows merged the post-industrial white noise with heavy metal grind. And that's what made the group an unprecedented multi-platinum sensation. Jane's Addiction and Soundgarden may have proven to the vast American heavy metal audience that alternative could rock, and the Pixies may have merged pop sensibilities with indie rock white noise, but Nirvana pulled at all together, creating a sound that was both fiery and melodic. Since Nirvana was rooted in the indie aesthetic but loved pop music, they fought their stardom while courting it, becoming some of the most notorious anti-rock stars in history. The result was a conscious attempt to shed their audience with the abrasive In Utero, which only partially fulfilled the band's goal. But by that point, the fate of the band and Kurt Cobain had been sealed. Suffering from drug addiction and manic depression, Cobain had become destructive and suicidal, though his management and label were able to hide the extent of his problems from the public until April 8, 1994, when he was found dead of a self-inflicted shotgun wound. Cobain may not have been able to weather Nirvana's success, but the band's legacy stands as one of the most influential in rock & roll history.

Top Albums

Nirvana, Nirvana
1. Nirvana
MTV Unplugged in New York: Nirvana, Nirvana
2. MTV Unplugge..
In Utero, Nirvana
3. In Utero
Nevermind, Nirvana
4. Nevermind
Bleach (20th Anniversary Deluxe Edition), Nirvana
5. Bleach (20th..
Live At Reading, Nirvana
6. Live At Read..
Incesticide, Nirvana
7. Incesticide
From the Muddy Banks of the Wishkah, Nirvana
8. From the Mud..
Nevermind (Deluxe Edition), Nirvana
9. Nevermind (D..
Sliver - The Best of the Box, Nirvana
10. Sliver - The..
Nevermind (Super Deluxe Edition), Nirvana
11. Nevermind (S..
With the Lights Out, Nirvana
12. With the Lig..
Lithium - Single, Nirvana
13. Lithium - Si..
Lithium (Acoustic Version) - Single, Nirvana
14. Lithium (Aco..

Top Songs

Smells Like Teen SpiritNirvana5:01$1.29
Come As You AreNirvana3:39$1.29
Heart-Shaped BoxNirvana4:39$1.29
All ApologiesIn Utero3:50$1.29
Lake of Fire (Live)MTV Unplugged in New York: ..2:55$0.99
In BloomNirvana4:13$1.29
Heart Shaped BoxIn Utero4:41$1.29
Rape MeNirvana2:49$1.29
Smells Like Teen SpiritNevermind5:01$1.29
You Know You're RightNirvana3:37$1.29
Where Did You Sleep Last Night (Live..MTV Unplugged in New York: ..5:08$1.29
Man Who Sold the World (Live)MTV Unplugged in New York: ..4:20$1.29
Man Who Sold the World (Live)Nirvana3:47$1.29
Come As You AreNevermind3:38$1.29
About a GirlNirvana2:46$0.99
Something In the WayNevermind3:52$1.29
About a Girl (Live)MTV Unplugged in New York: ..3:37$1.29
All Apologies (Live)MTV Unplugged in New York: ..4:23$1.29
In BloomNevermind4:15$1.29
All Apologies (Live)Nirvana3:45$1.29
Plateau (Live)MTV Unplugged in New York: ..3:38$1.29
Rape MeIn Utero2:49$1.29

Top Music Videos

Smells Like Teen Spirit, Nirvana
1. Smells Like Te..
Heart Shaped Box, Nirvana
2. Heart Shaped B..
Come As You Are, Nirvana
3. Come As You Ar..
The Man Who Sold the World (Live), Nirvana
4. The Man Who So..
In Bloom (Version 2), Nirvana
5. In Bloom (Vers..
Lithium (1992/Live), Nirvana
6. Lithium (1992/..
All Apologies (1993, Live On MTV Unplugged), Nirvana
7. All Apologies ..
About a Girl (1993, Live On MTV Unplugged), Nirvana
8. About a Girl (..
You Know You're Right, Nirvana
9. You Know You'r..
School (1992/Live At Reading), Nirvana
10. School (1992/L..
Sliver (Version A), Nirvana
11. Sliver (Versio..
In Bloom (Sub Pop Version), Nirvana
12. In Bloom (Sub ..
Lithium (1992/Live At Reading), Nirvana
13. Lithium (1992/..
Smells Like Teen Spirit (1992/Live At Reading), Nirvana
14. Smells Like Te..
Polly (1992/Live At Reading), Nirvana
15. Polly (1992/Li..
Territorial P*****gs (Live At the Paramount / 1991), Nirvana
16. Territorial P*..
Come As You Are (1992/Live at Reading), Nirvana
17. Come As You Ar..
Breed (Live At the Paramount / 1991), Nirvana
18. Breed (Live At..
Negative Creep (Live In Europe / 1991), Nirvana
19. Negative Creep..
About a Girl (Live/Home Video Version), Nirvana
20. About a Girl (..


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