Krist Novoselic: 'Dave and I Aren't Carrying Nirvana Music Now, It's Kurt'

Bassist opens up on Nirvana’s legacy in new interview.

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Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic has been talking to Rolling Stone about the process of putting together the 20th anniversary version of Nirvana's classic "In Utero" album. As Novoselic notes, the process has brought about mixed feelings. "There is a lot of baggage that comes with it. It brings back a lot of memories - good memories, painful memories. But it's good music - good rock music." The bassist also reflected on the fact that many people consider the record to be Kurt Cobain's eulogy. "It is a haunting record. I am not haunted by it. But there is imagery on there that I would never express to people. I would blow it if I said, 'This song means that.' I would rob people of their imaginations. And I would betray Kurt.

"There's my personal experience with him. Other people have their experiences with him. And we're each entitled to our own interpretations. But none of them are the definitive one. He's the only one who can give that - and he's gone. And he never gave one while he was alive.” Speaking on Cobain, Novoselic notes that it still feels like the singer/guitarist is carrying the band’s music, in spite of his passing. "Kurt carries the music still. All of that music is a testimony to his artistic vision. Dave and I aren't carrying the music now. It's Kurt." Speaking to Rolling Stone in a separate interview last week, Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl revealed that he hasn’t told his children that Kurt Cobain killed himself. "To me, if you listen to it without thinking of Kurt dying, you might get the original intention of the record. Like my kids. They know I was in Nirvana. They know Kurt was killed. I haven't told them that he killed himself. They're four and seven years old. So when they listen to 'In Utero,' they'll have that fresh perspective - the original intention of the album, as a first-time listener.”

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    I never thought of it... First time I heard nirvana consciously ,Kurt was already dead and it was always in my mind, now that I think about it, it did have some impact on my way of seeing the band. Krist seems like a really good guy and father.
    I really hope Courtney doesn't use this to say that Nirvana was all Kurt like she has been trying to say. I can't bear the idea of her turning this against the survivors.
    <<<< obviously, I'm a big nirvana fan. But, when I listened to in utero for the first time I was just listening to the music not really putting the whole stigma of Kurt's death around it. Sure, the video for heart shaped box has pretty grim imagery in it, but I also noticed the humor in the video as well as the record. In Radio Friendly Unit Shifter I noticed Kurt's vocals underneath the intro asking "Tell me something...Do you like me?" I could be wrong on the quote but it took me several times to hear it and there is sort of a sarcasm to it which Kurt himself has described himself as, as well as being completely sincere. There are a lot of funny moments on in utero like the "Geeks with Charvels" line in gallons of rubbing alcohol flow through the strip and "Teenage angst has paid off well, now I'm bored and old." from Serve the Servants. I could go on but I have massive respect for Dave, Krist, Courtney, and Frances. Nirvana changed my life and Courtney's advice from the behind the music about suicide saved my life.
    this ^ i didnt listen any different to any of the nirvana albums knowing kurt killed himself. To me it's about the music, not the events happening around it. Which sounds a bit bad, but I'd think negative events would ruin music for me if I listened to it that way.
    Maybe Dave's kids will actually read their dad's interviews (or anything else available) before listening to In Utero. That way they'll know a lot more about it. Unless Dave plans to keep them in a bubble all the time.
    Yeah, I'm willing to bet he allows his 4 and 7 year olds just jump around on the internet constantly. All they know is that Kurt is dead. Not how it happened. Why do they NEED to know? Why is the fact that Kurt Cobain killed himself such a topic that is required to listen to the music? They'll find out he killed himself some day, but that's nothing a 7 year old needs to know about.
    They should definitely get opportunity to experience In Utero without any connotations, that record is killer! If you are a true fan you appreciate the music for what it is and what it stands for, not what happened a year after it was released, like the song 'I Hate Myself And Want To Die', that song is a sick song and the title is supposed to be over the top because Nirvana were (and remaining members still are) funny guys who screwed around a lot, if you listen to that song with Kurt's suicide in mind you'll just hear it as a suicide note instead of what it's meant to be, a fun track
    Leave Nirvana's legacy alone. Whatever you do, it won't have much to do with Nirvana and the vibe anyway.