Nirvana Is Overrated

Today marks the 25th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s suicide, so the radio is filled with non-stop song from Nevermind and social media is buzzing with Nirvana talk

I figured today is as good a day as any to get something off my chest that has been there for a while now. I almost hate to say it, but Nirvana is overrated, and if Kurt Cobain didn’t die in such dramatic fashion, they wouldn’t be considered the rock legends that they are ¯\_()_/¯

It felt great to finally say it out loud, but now I’m scared that an army of flannel shirt-wearing Nirvana fans will descend on my house with pitchforks and torches. Before you guys drag me through the streets Black Hawk Down style, at least hear me out for a second and let me explain what I mean

First of all, I like Nirvana. I think they were a good band, I don’t think Seattle would have had quite the same stranglehold on music that it did without them, and therefore I respect what they did for alternative rock as a whole

See? This isn’t just a blog blindly shitting on Nirvana for no reason. All that being said, Nirvana is still overrated. It’s important to realize that something can still be good and overrated at the same time. Chipotle is good, but it’s overrated. ANOTHER EXAMPLE. So in similar fashion, Nirvana is good, but they’re overrated.

So are they are they overrated exactly? Let me plain. Whether you’re talking with your friends, some people at work, or it’s some magazine or website that’s doing a list of the best bands, Nirvana always ends up way too far near the top, and this is coming from somebody that loves grunge

I guess let’s start with Kurt. Kurt Cobain is always talked about as this legendary musician who changed music forever, when in reality he was just an average guitar player that made a few good songs and had a bad heroin problem, and those types of people were a dime a dozen in the 90’s Seattle music scene. The only reason why Kurt Cobain is put ahead of and remembered as more of a legend than other grunge front men is that he blew his head off. If he never killed himself, Nirvana would have slowly faded away from popularity within 5-10 years. In fact, I think a part of him knew this and it’s why he killed himself. In his suicide note, he said “It’s better to burn out than to fade away”, which is a line from Neil Young’s “My My, Hey Hey”. Kurt knew the fame wouldn’t last forever, and that it would be better for him to go out on top, Seinfeld style. So, he grabbed his gun and quite literally went out with a bang

Now I already said that I do like Nirvana, but if you can’t also critique things that you like, what’s the point? Let’s break down 99% of Nirvana songs. Mostly basic guitar chords combined with mumbled lyrics and an overall “We should pawn the TV for heroin money” vibe. I mean for fucks sake, in the song “Heart Shaped Box”, Kurt literally says “I wish I could eat your cancer”. What dude? I know that probably made sense when you had that needle in your arm and were nodding off on a bus, but cancer doesn’t sound too appetizing to regular people.

Also I hate to be nitpicky and a tattle tale, but Kurt Cobain was also a huge liar. In the song “Come As You Are”, he repeatedly insists, “No I don’t have a gun”, when I’m pretty sure he did have a gun. It’s kinda hard to shoot yourself in the head if you don’t have a gun, but what do I know?

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Full disclosure, I also need to acknowledge that I do have a biased opinion when it comes to this subject because, to me, the real king of the Seattle grunge scene died on the same day, April 5th, but 9 years after Cobain. I’m talking about Layne Staley, lead singer of Alice in Chains. Layne not only had a way better voice than Kurt and sang about things way more thought provoking than Nirvana ever did, but he also died from a drug overdose like a real musician

So to sum things up here, I think Nirvana is a good band, but I also think the pedestal that a lot of people put them on is way too high. To me, Nirvana is sort of like Chipotle: It’s fine, I enjoy it, but let’s not get carried away here. You all know it’s true, so don’t burn me at the stake for saying facts. I’m sure there are plenty of people out there that feel the same way but were too nervous to admit it

And while I’m on the topic of saying things people are too scared to admit, I’ve got one more for you: Weird Al’s version of “Smells Like Teen Spirit” is way better

4 comments

  1. Nirvana is actually one of my all time favorites. And you are actually a great writer, and I don’t want to be ANY way rude. I just want to say that I believe the cover of Nevermind is really just art, and that there is a difference between art and porn. I respect your beliefs about Nirvana entirely, and I beg of you to not take this is any way a mean comment. I just wanted to throw my thoughts out there.

    Liked by 2 people

    • First things first, I fucking love the feedback. I’m not a pussy and I appreciate feedback of any kind, so thank you. I don’t get many comments on my blogs, so I wanted to give an extra thank you for complimenting my writing. I like Nirvana too, and as a mentioned in the post, I like certain aspects of their music. But my main point was that I don’t understand why they’re praised as rock gods, when if you really look into it, they kinda suck. Compare them to other bands, and they are regular at best. Sunny Day Real Estate is a Washington based band that is infinitely better than Nirvana, but somehow doesn’t get the same level of love. When SDRE broke up, the remaining members joined Nirvana member Dave Grohl and became Foo Fighters, one of the most successful bands ever, but nobody seems to give a shit. Agree to disagree, and thank you for replying because I do love hearing the other side of things, so I hope you follow the blog because I write a “Shuffle Song Of The Day” blog every day.

      Like

      • They did put the hairbands out of business and invent alternative 😊 (no Alice In Chains without them), don’t get me wrong I love Alice In Chains, and Layne had something special. But Kurt paved the way, and invented a new sound.

        But yes this country is freedom of speech, and you can think of what you want of them. You’re a very passionate writer, and I respect that. Nirvana is a rock god in my opinion, and if you think differently that’s OK! That’s how it’s suppose to be, everyone has different music taste. And that’s why it’s beautiful. I’ve read some of your shuffle song of the day blog posts, and they were enjoyed! Keep writing, and if you don’t like Nirvana it’s all good! Definitely wouldn’t hate on someone who likes or dislikes a band. I personally find Nirvana the greatest rock band ever (next to Smashing Pumpkins), but the whole point of music is to have some differences. Keep writing and I’ll continue to search up some more of your blog posts! Have a good one!!

        Liked by 2 people

      • They did put hairbands out of business so thank you to them for that haha. And yeah dude music is subjective, which is a huge part of what makes it so great. Appreciate the feedback, and hope you have a good one too

        Liked by 1 person

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