Category: grunge

On this day in music history: June 15, 1989 – …

On this day in music history: June 15, 1989 – “Bleach”, the debut album by Nirvana is released. Produced by Jack Endino, it is recorded at Reciprocal Recording in Seattle, WA from December 1988 – January 1989. The first album by the Aberdeen, WA grunge rock band is recorded in only thirty hours of studio time at a cost of only $606.17. Second guitarist Jason Everman finances the recording of the album in spite of not playing a note on it. Guitarist/songwriter and lead singer Kurt Cobain credits him anyway as a gesture of thanks. Issued on small Seattle indie rock label Sub Pop Records, the album sells about 40,000 copies during its initial release, but rises significantly in prominence following Nirvana’s hugely successful second album “Nevermind” in 1991. “Bleach” finally charts on the Billboard Top 200 in 1992 peaking at #89. It tops the Catalog album sales chart on May 7, 1994 one month after Kurt Cobain’s death. A limited number of copies of the original LP release are pressed on white vinyl. Subsequent reissues are pressed on numerous colors including marbled pink, clear red, swirled aqua blue, marbled bottle green, marbled purple. In 2009, the album is remastered and reissued for its twentieth anniversary. The LP configuration is issued as a double vinyl set  (exclusively sold through retailer Newbury Comics) featuring a live performance recorded at the Pine Street Theatre in Portland, OR in February of 1990. The LP’s also also pressed in multiple colors including white, blue marbled black and purple marbled black. “Bleach” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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twixnmix: Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love photog…

twixnmix:

Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love photographed by Dora Handel, 1992. 

On this day in music history: May 28, 1991 – &…

On this day in music history: May 28, 1991 – “Gish”, the debut album by The Smashing Pumpkins is released. Produced by Butch Vig and Billy Corgan, it is recorded at Smart Studios in Madison, WI from December 1990 – March 1991. The debut release by the Chicago, IL based alternative rock band stands apart from many of their musical peers. Guitarist, vocalist and songwriter Billy Corgan is more influenced by bands such as post punk pioneers The Cure and New Order as well as progressive rock and heavy metal, rather than the punk and noise rock roots many other alt-rock bands. The band team up with producer and engineer Butch Vig (Garbage, Nirvana), recording at his small recording studio in Madison, WI. Recorded for a modest budget of only $20,000, Corgan’s fanatical drive for sonic perfection puts an immense strain on himself and the band resulting in him suffering a nervous breakdown during the sessions. Released on Caroline Records (independently distributed, but owned by Virgin Records), it is embraced immediately by college and alternative rock radio, selling over 100,000 copies in its first year. The album is remastered and reissued as a two CD + DVD set in 2011. The first CD features the original ten song album. The second CD features eighteen bonus tracks, including demos, and remixed versions of other tracks. The DVD includes a live concert performance filmed at The Metro in Chicago on August 25, 1990. It also included a twenty-four page booklet annotated by writer and music critic David Wild and Billy Corgan. The album is also remastered and reissued as a180 gram vinyl LP. “Gish” peaks at number one hundred ninety five on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: April 12, 1994 -…

On this day in music history: April 12, 1994 – “Live Through This”, the second album by Hole is released. Produced by Paul Q. Kolderie and Sean Slade, it is recorded at Triclops Sound Studios in Marietta, GA from October 8 – 30, 1993. The follow up to the band’s acclaimed debut “Pretty On The Inside”, the band work with Paul Q. Kolderie and Sean Slade (Pixies, Dinosaur Jr.). The album sees them shifting to a more accessible sound but maintaining their punk and noise rock roots. Released one week after the death of Courtney Love’s husband Kurt Cobain, it is a critical and commercial success, spinning off three singles including “Miss World” and “Doll Parts”. Rumors persist after the albums release and for many years afterward, that Cobain actually wrote all of the songs. This is vehemently denied by everyone associated with the making of the album. The albums memorable cover art features a photo of model Leilani Bishop dressed as a beauty pageant contestant, with mascara running down her face from crying. The back cover features a childhood photo of Courtney Love, with the albums individual titles written on Dymo labeling tape. “Live Through This” peaks at number fifty two on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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Remembering rock music icon Kurt Cobain (born …

Remembering rock music icon Kurt Cobain (born Kurt Donald Cobain in Aberdeen, WA) – February 20, 1967 – April 5, 1994

On this day in music history: March 27, 1995 -…

On this day in music history: March 27, 1995 – “Frogstomp”, the debut album by Silverchair is released. Produced by Kevin “Caveman” Shirley, it is recorded at Festival Studios in Pyrmont, New South Wales, Australia from December 27, 1994 – January 17, 1995. Formed only three years before as Death Rides A Sandwich (before changing their name), the Australian rock trio consisting of guitarist and lead vocalist Daniel Johns, bassist Chris Joannu, and drummer Ben Gillies, get their big break in 1994 when they enter a demo competition conducted by the television show “Nomad” and Australian Broadcasting Corporation radio station Triple J. When they win the competition they are signed to Murmur Records (an Australian subsidiary of Sony Music), and are signed to Epic Records throughout the rest of the world. Their debut album is recorded in just three weeks, all of the members are only fifteen years old at the time of its release. It is an immediate hit on alternative and mainstream rock radio, spinning off five singles including “Tomorrow” (#1 Alternative and Mainstream Rock). “Frogstomp” hits number one on the Australian album chart (going 9x Platinum), peaking at number nine on the Billboard Top 200 and is certified 2x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: March 8, 1994 – …

On this day in music history: March 8, 1994 – “Superunknown”, the fourth studio album by Soundgarden is released. Produced by Michael Beinhorn and Soundgarden, it is recorded at Bad Animals Studios in Seattle, WA from July – September 1993. Work on the Seattle based rock bands fourth release begins in mid 1992 while they are on the road in support of their previous album “Badmotorfinger”, writing the songs over the next year. The band work with producer Michael Beinhorn (formerly of the band Material), best known for his work with The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Herbie Hancock. A major critical and commercial success upon its release, the album is the bands mainstream breakthrough, becoming an airplay staple on both alternative and mainstream rock radio. It spins off five singles including “Black Hole Sun” (#1 Mainstream Rock), “Spoonman” (#3 Mainstream Rock), and “Fell On Black Days” (#4 Mainstream Rock) and winning two Grammy Awards including Best Metal Performance (“Spoonman”) and Best Hard Rock Performance (“Black Hole Sun”) in 1995. The album is also issued as a limited edition vinyl double LP set, pressed on colored (orange, blue, green, and clear) vinyl. It is remastered and reissued for its 20th anniversary in 2014, as a two disc edition with the second CD featuring demos, B-sides and live tracks. The album is also issued as a five disc (4CD’s + Blu-ray disc) Super Deluxe Edtion featuring even more bonus material. The DVD-A disc includes a high resolution Blu-ray disc featuring new 5.1 surround mixes. “Superunknown” debuts at number one on the Billboard Top 200, spending one week at the top, and is certified 5x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

On this day in music history: February 24, 199…

On this day in music history: February 24, 1992 – Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love are married on Waikiki Beach in Honolulu, HI. The wedding is held a few days after Nirvana completes a tour of the Pacific Rim. The bride wears a vintage satin and lace dress once owned by actress Frances Farmer, and the groom wears green pajamas. At the time of the wedding, the couple are also expecting their first and only child, a girl named Frances Bean who is born on August 18, 1992.

On this day in music history: December 6, 1994…

On this day in music history: December 6, 1994 – “Vitalogy”, the third album by Pearl Jam is released (the vinyl LP is released on November 22, 1994). Produced by Brendan O’Brien and Pearl Jam, it is recorded at Bad Animals Studios in Seattle, WA, Southern Tracks Recording, Doppler Studios in Atlanta, GA and Kingsway Studios in New Orleans, LA from November 1993 – October 1994. The band writes the material for the album during the tour for their previous release “Vs.”, recording it over a period of eleven months. The original working title for the album is “Life” which is changed to “Vitalogy” (meaning “the study of life”), which is the name of an early twentieth century medical book, of which lead singer Eddie Vedder owns a copy. Text and illustrations from the book are included in the booklet that comes packaged with the album. In an unconventional move, “Vitalogy” is released on vinyl two weeks ahead of the CD and cassette configurations, selling enough copies (35,000 units) for it to actually enter the chart at #55. It drops to #173 in its second week, but leaps to the top of the chart on December 24, 1994, two weeks after the CD and cassette versions are released, selling 877,000 copies that week. It spins off three singles including “Spin The Black Circle” (#18 Pop) and “Better Man” (#13 Pop). Pearl Jam wins the Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock Performance for “Spin” in 1996. Like the album itself, all three singles are pressed as vinyl 45’s with accompanying picture sleeves. The album is remastered and reissued on CD in 2011 with three additional bonus tracks, with an exclusive limited edition sold through retailer Best Buy, including a T-shirt. The same year, the vinyl LP is reissued, pressing it as a 180 gram two LP set for better sound quality over the original 1994 release, which was issued as a single LP. The single “Immortality” b/w “Rearviewmirror” is reissued as limited edition 7" replicating the original label and picture sleeve artwork, is released on Record Store Day in 2011 to promote the reissues of the album. “Vitalogy” spends one week at number one on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 5x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

Courtney Love photographed by Kevin Cummins, M…

Courtney Love photographed by Kevin Cummins, March 1993.