‘Here we are now’, and it was, as Kurt Cobain sang, ‘contagious’. Twenty years to the day since Nirvana released Smells Like Teen Spirit, the record remains a rock icon.
To mark the anniversary, the album Nevermind is being re-released, packed with live and previously unreleased tracks.
Smells Like Teen Spirit is now seen as a breakthrough – when grunge went mainstream – although at the time Kurt Cobain admitted he was just trying to imitate The Pixies.
In London fans gathered to worship at the turntable. ‘‘Well, it was kind of the first album that really made me actually realise what my taste in music was, rather than listening to what was around at the time, and what other people were listening to. It was the first band that really made me branch out,’‘ explained one man.
Music magazine editor James McMahon believes the album has a strong legacy: ‘‘I think that it still is the benchmark for an intelligent, sensitive punk rock-minded rock band, it’s still a benchmark for how high a band with all those ideals and principles can go, even to this day.’‘
Nevermind – which featured other standout tracks like Come As You Are, In Bloom and Polly – was a cornerstone of the Seattle sound, and defines a moment in the early-Nineties for many music fans.
Nirvana have now sold 50 million albums worldwide, and this re-release will add a few more to that tally.