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Customer Review

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Pure Grunge Album, 31 Aug. 2007
This review is from: Bleach (Audio CD)
Recorded on a shoestring budget and released back in 1989 when Seattle was still a relatively obscure musical backwater, it was nevertherless clear that Nirvana were something special. Grunge contemporaries like Tad, Mudhoney and Soundgarden certainly had some fine moments but none were able to produce records of such consistent excellence.

All of the ingredients for a grunge classic are here: slow, heavy riffing of sludgy guitars and lyrics which convey the stifling frustration of being a social misfit in a small American town.

What sets `Bleach' apart from its peers, though, is Cobain's seemingly innate deftness of touch and pop sensibility. This really shines through on `Blew' and the rightly celebrated `About a Girl' (which Cobain feared might be too poppy for his label) but is also present on heavier numbers like `Floyd the Barber', `School' and the claustrophobic `Sifting'. Even the out-and-out thrilling thrash-fest of `Negative Creep' can be sung (or screamed) along to.

`Bleach' caught the ear of David Geffen and `Nevermind' catapulted Cobain to reluctant superstardom, but the seeds of greatness were sown in this brilliant record, arguably the greatest grunge LP recorded.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 3 Sep 2008, 03:18:45 BST
Mark Twain says:
Wow I absolutely agree with everything you say. I often see people talking about Bleach like some kind of musically and lyrically retarded stepson of Nevermind etc.. and to me that is missing the whole point of Bleach. Bleach was meant to be a grunge album.. Grunge wasn't about classic rock or stadium filling songs like Teen Spirit and Lithium and whatnot. Grunge was dirty, simple, 3 chord, angry! songs from pissed off young people who grew up listening to punk and metal and wanted to fuse the two together.

With that in mind, I personally consider this the best "grunge" album to ever come out of Seattle. Lyrically it really does have it's moments and although it's no Bob Dylan record, it doesn't have bad lyrics either. I actually like all of them. The highlight though is the fantastic heavy guitar riffs, and the incredible rock voice Cobain had, and then all those screams which sadly were missing on all future albums (with only a couple of exceptions). I could ramble forever about this album but basically I just really love it and I think there is something really special about it. I bought this in about 1993 when I was about 13 years old. It's now 15 years later, and I love it as much as the day I got it. That really says something.

In reply to an earlier post on 23 Oct 2008, 14:10:20 BST
D. Newton says:
Cheers for that, Mark, perhaps one of the reasons why 'Bleach' still sounds so fresh is that it captures a band playing for themselves and having 'fun', free of the pressure from corporate paymasters? This latter problem always seemed to concern Kurt form the first moments that 'Nevermind' became successful. For the record, I love all Nirvana's albums and was lucky enough to see them live a couple of times back in the day. Kurt's talents are sorely missed.

Posted on 30 Nov 2008, 18:40:05 GMT
David Seaman says:
Yeah Bleach still sounds great and like the band are enjoying themselves, Insesticide is the same, I find Nevermind a joyless and self indulgent album now, I loved it when I was 14, I'm now 30 and Bleach is so much more inspirational to me, Nevermind sounds dated and its also to blame for a lot of really awfull bands being formed
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D. Newton
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Location: Swindon, Wilts

Top Reviewer Ranking: 24,364