Allow me to reintroduce myself, my name is Jay Porks; and I'm pissed off. I'm pissed off at the mediocrity people will settle for these days. In times where you walk around to people humming Adele and trying to explain to me how much Lady Gaga is contributing to the canon of 'great' music. In a land where if Rick Ruben decides not to produce your record no one cares; Spin Magazine released a FREE download of a Nevermind Tribute album titled "Newermind", featuring ranging artists covering all the songs off Nirvana's major label debut. I've been waiting for this thing to come out for months-safe to say when Consequence of Sound announced last night that it was available at midnight and I didn't have to wait til Tuesday morning I was beyond stoked. Even though the only two acts on this record I have heard of are The Meat Puppets and the Vaselines, I felt there was nothing that can derail my late Monday Night-Tuesday morning joyous listening.
Until I read the reviews.
It was then I realized that it's true..people don't want good stuff. People want crap. They want Foo Fighters, they want Electric 6, they want Justin Beiber. Hell, if Kayne West took a take on Territorial Pissings, I bet this album would have been certified as the greatest thing invented since fat women discovered Diet Coke. But it seems that this eclectic group of artists covering these great songs just wasn't good enough for the "online music community".
Let's start with Antiquiet, a website I frequent often for music news, usually looking for the articles by Reverend Justito. Today there was a post on Antiquiet today that just made me want to cry inside. A quote: “Spin Magazine released a shitty compilation of Nirvana covers today entitled Newermind, to celebrate the 20th birthday of Nevermind. Wait, did I say shitty? I meant mostly shitty. There’s a cover of Stay Away by Charles Bradley & The Menahan Street Band that totally kills ”
Kills? Yea they kill it alright-this song would be cool if the Black Keys did it, not some Howlin' Wolf wanna-be. I get it, it sounds like its a James Brown song.. You like that garbage? I don't own any James Brown albums, and out of all the oddness that occurs on “Newermind”, this is one of the three songs I couldn't make it through Just because we live in an era of really crap music doesn't mean we can take anything crap that has a slight difference to it and call it revolutionary.. To say this is the stand out on this record is absolute lunacy. If this was any other website writing this I'd have an open letter out saying the 'F' word repeatedly, but like I said I frequent Antiquiet often-So I'm just going to have to agree to disagree with their views on this and pretend in my head that they give a shit. In the meantime, this Charles Bradley non sense is being removed from my iPod..
Meat Puppets doing Smells Like Teen Spirit: In a rage I posted an abbreviated version of this next paragraph in a Meat Puppets message board... What angers me is the reaction. It's as if people are expecting more from this song(or this whole record really), as if the Meat Puppets wanted to recreate it or something. From how it sounds like they came out recording this song, the band didn't even have this in their tour itinerary. They were asked if they wanted to do a song, showed a list of the songs left, and busted it out. I can bet they didn't think of things like “Okay, how are we going to do this?” That's not the way the Meat Puppets operate from what I've learned about the band over the years. They had an extra 3 minutes, they recorded a song.. I doubt Spin magazine came with Butch Vig and a $12,000/day studio to record this. What it sounds like is exactly how I personally expected it to sound when I heard it was coming out ..Do you hear that backing guitar noise progresses throughout the song into the solo? That's so Meat Puppets of them to do-I thought it was pretty amazing.. I cannot comprehend how this can go unliked. That said I cannot wait to get to the Gorge on July 30th so I can find the Meat Puppets and ask about this whole process.. It's mind boggling to me.
No one says, wants or is hoping this is equal or better than Nirvana versions of theses songs-it's a celebration of an awesome album with contributions from some epic acts. Honestly, was a little disappointed with one of my favorite bands the Vaselines turning “Lithium” into a horror movie soundtrack, but I can still get on board with it after a while. JEFF The Brotherhood leaves us with a memorable “Something In the Way”, Titus Andronicus serves “Breed” some well deserved justice. Butch Walker and the Black Widows girling up “In Bloom” I can even tolerate without having to call the release “shitty”. Hell, I even found Jessica Lea Mayfield doing “Lounge Act”(one of my favs from the original release of this album) had me rocking out once you get past the initial sadness she has to inflict on you in the beginning of every song she's ever sang. And am I suppose to call her EMA? Anyway, “Endless, Nameless” doesn't beat around the bush, even on “Newermind”...
This will be the last point I make before I duck out of here, and it' a short one.. How much did you pay for it? Oh, right.. it was a free download. Enjoy it. And SPIN Magazine don't worry, I'll be back in two years for "On Utero" or whatever you're going to call that one-and I hope we can get the Meat Puppets doing "Radio Friendly Unit Shifter". Just a thought.