In Utero by Nirvana

In Utero by Nirvana

After Nirvana had competed the recording sessions for their third studio album In Utero the feedback from their record company was less than good. "The grown-ups don't like it", Cobain reported, having been told that his songwriting was "not up to par", the sound was "unlistenable", and that there was uncertainty that mainstream radio would welcome the sound of Steve Albini's production.

Nonetheless, the band members also began to have doubts about the record's sound. Cobain admitted, "The first time I played it at home, I knew there was something wrong. The whole first week I wasn't really interested in listening to it at all, and that usually doesn't happen. I got no emotion from it, I was just numb." The band concluded that the bass and lyrics were inaudible and approached Albini to remix the album. This created vehement disagreement with Albini resulting in Nirvana deciding to remix and augment the songs Heart-Shaped Box and All Apologies with Scott Litt at Seattle's Bad Animals Studio in May 1993.

While the rest of the album was left unaltered aside from a remastering which sharpened the bass guitar sound and increased the volume of the vocals its impact on Kurt Cobain was notable. His musical decisions had been questioned, first by the record company, then by Albini - he had lost control of Nirvana's sound and ultimately his own voice, something that significantly contributed to his suicide less than a year after the album was released.

Consequently, Nirvana fans have been left wondering the significant differences between the two mixes, why the controversy arose between Nirvana, the record company and Albini, and if the original mix had been approved by Greffen records whether Cobain would have continued to produce further albums altering the events of spring 1994. See what you think of the two mixes and let us know if you think things might have changed had the first mix been released!

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