This September marks the 20th anniversary of the release of Nirvana’s generation defining Nevermind album, and while there are enough cash ins and re-releases to make Kurt’s ashes spin in their urn, this one particular tribute album seems pretty darn cool US music magazine and website Spin has released a tribute entitled Newermind, in which they have collected artists to cover every single track on the album, including two tracks which are performed by two of Kurt Cobain’s favourite bands; Meat Puppets and The Vaselines.
Cobain infamously covered the former’s ‘Lake of Fire’ on Nirvana’s 1994 MTV Unplugged album, while he also covered the latter’s’ Jesus Don’t Want Me For A Sunbeam’. On this album, the Meat Puppets face the daunting task of covering ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ while The Vaselines are tasked with the job of re-interpreting ‘Lithium’. Curt Kirkwood, who also joined Nirvana onstage at the infamous MTV session says of the cover “It wasn’t daunting. ‘Teen Spirit’ is just a few chords. It’s easy to play — slap some reverb on there and it’s good to go.” Reflecting on returning the favour all these years later, he says, “This was a cool, weird opportunity — like playing with Nirvana on MTV Unplugged — so we’re happy to take it.”
The Vaselines’ Eugene Kelly says that since Nirvana covered them on MTV Unplugged, they were “always being asked if we’d ever cover a Nirvana song.” He says, “We’d always said no. We just didn’t think we could find a way to do it that wasn’t going to feel stupid.” With seventeen years to ponder it, they have decided to “keep it sparse,” he says of the way they approached it. “The more simple and naive the better.”
Other artists to be included in the tribute include Melbourne’s very own Midnight Juggernaughts covering ‘Come As You Are’ and Surfer Blood covering ‘Territorial Pissings’. To get your paws on this as a free download, head over to http://www.facebook.com/SPIN?sk=app_203351739677351, give ‘em an email address and get downloading.