Valerie P. (vprosser) from ORLEANS, MI Reviewed on 8/7/2006...
The best Nirvana album, before they were famous...
3 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
Pure, unadulterated, hardcore grunge rock
Spatula Boy | Californ-i-ay | 02/04/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This album, though it is probably not nearly as popular as Nevermind or In Utero (my favorite album ever), is a classic. Perhaps more than Nevermind. The songs on here are raw and emotional, much more so than many of the songs that Kurt later wrote. The songs range from insane screaming (Negative Creep, School) to rhythmic melodies (About a Girl) and early, almost nauseating (in a good way) grunge (paper cuts, blew), very similar to alice in chains. Pretty much every song on here is worth listening to. This is one of those CD's that you can put in your CD player and not even touch the track-select button. This CD is kind of like a look into the past, of where they came from before the fame or fortune, back when Kurt dreamt of being a rock star, before he found out what it was like. When you listen to this album, remember what it was like before Nevermind or Teen Spirit, before anyone had heard of Nirvana and they were in it for the sheer enjoyment of music. When nobody even knew there was a guy out there named Kurt Cobain, before anyone knew he was anything special. This IS Nirvana, at its core. This is the music coming from Kurt Cobain the human being, not Kurt Cobain the music god. If you like rock, you'll like this CD."
I miss Kurt Cobain.
Jonathan Providence | Delaware | 04/14/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am a 20 year old black kid and no one would expect me to listen to Nirvana, but i've been listening to them since 92', the first song I ever heard was smells like teen spirit, i remember the son of the family my mother worked for gave me the nevermind cd and I was blown away, I was only five or six but I loved the hell out of Nirvana. Bleach was given to me as a cassette by the same person and this would be Nirvana's foundation, the best album they ever made, every song is listenable without skipping, unlike incesticide or in utero. If you are just getting into Nirvana start here this is a classic because it has that raw punk-metal sound, school has to be the greatest song ever. There are few rockers such as Kurt and Marilyn Manson, who have the most rugged and violent voices, this is a true talent, you can feel Kurt's voice not just hear it. His voice is the greatest in rock if you ask me, from sing-songy, to scream, to violent howl, he made the best rock songs ever, from his voice to his guitar playing (oh my god), to the whole melody of the song + lyrics=perfection. He is and was the greatest because he had fans of all races and im proof of that, even though i didnt live in a suburban area I was the only kid in the "ghetto" listening to this and I've been a fan since 6 years old. If you dont have unplugged you should be arrested and sentenced to life. R.I.P Kurt."
Nirvana's debut album is underrated
seth luke | Springfield, Oregon | 01/14/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's hard for me to really pick a favorite Nirvana album, becuase they're all very good [if I had to though it'd be their live "Unplugged" album]. While Nevermind probably is the best out of their studio albums, it seems that it and In Utero get far more attention than Bleach and Incesticide. This has a much more unrefined sound then Nevermind does and is a lot more punk influenced. The guitar work keeps true to the fuzz-style of early grunge and most of the songs are short with fast guitars, in the tradition of punk, so this album probably more than any other sowcases Nirvana's punk roots. For this reason this album seems like a somewhat bad choice if you're just getting to like Nirvana [since in Utero and nevermind both sound much more like what you probably hear from them on the radio], however if you like ohter early grunge bands or punk bands of the time, or like songs such as "Lithium", "Breed", and "Stay Away" off of Nevermind then this is the album for you. My personal favorites off of here are "School", "Negative Creep", "Downer" and the best track of the bunch, "Blew." And also of course, About A Girl which sounds noticbly different on here than it does on "Unplugged" [where as Penyroyal Tea and All Apologies, both from "In Utero" sound more or less the same on "Unplugged"].So to really get down to it, this album is very good. If you are a big fan of nirvana get it, you will like it. If you are just a casual fan or mainly liek their radio singles then get Nevermind or In Utero, or their new Greatest Hits collection."
I love it
TK1981 | 03/16/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Okay, I had a really good time reading the customer reviews for this. Especially the negative ones. I like the one where this guy complains about *JOHNNY'S* little girl, hee. Was Kurt really THAT hard to understand?? Also, when did anyone say Kurt was a guitar virtuoso? Don't put words in Nirvana-fans' mouth. And there's more to songs and music in general than 10-minute long solos. There's room for every type of music and for every taste.Anyway, I would agree with those who said that for Nirvana beginners, Nevermind, Unplugged and In Utero should be bought first and foremost (the first reason why I'm giving Bleach only 4 stars). But somehow, I can't help strongly recommending this one too. CDs like Incesticide are cool for the versatility of the songs, but I somehow like it better when songs create a certain mood and have a similar feel to them. Bleach is an album full of those kinds of songs. Also, I like Kurt's vocals better on this CD than on In Utero. There's just more rage and power in them. Sorry.Blew- I love this one. It's got a great melody and great vocals.
Floyd the Barber- Okay, I don't like this song. This is the 2nd reason why I am giving Bleach 4 stars. No further comment.
About a Girl- Let me get this off my chest: this is my favorite Nirvana song *ever*. Sure, it's not as *significant* as Teen Spirit (which I do love), not as energetic or loud, but to me AAG is just incredible. It's so melodious and flowing and reminds me of the Beatles, with a slightly heavier sound. It's got great lyrics too, somewhat like hearing only one side of a phone fight. This song is the main reason why I can't help wishing that someone would release a cleaned-up enhanced version of this CD with a better sound. Yes, it's on the Unplugged too, but this version has more energy to it.
School- my second favorite. I'd pick this riff over Negative Creep's riff, for better or worse, and the 3 simple lines complaining about how grown up life is no different from school are endearing.
Love Buzz- I haven't heard the original of this. I wish I could, but can't find it. When I do hear it, perhaps my opinion of Nirvana's version would change, but as it is, I love it, especially the guitar parts.
Paper Cuts- this song is depressing. From the vocals to the dark melody, it's sort of shiver-inducing. In a good way.
Negative Creep- Heh, *Johnny's* little girl... Sorry, it's just funny. And the song itself is funny too. In a good, obnoxious way.
Scoff- I found a lot of people complaining about the repetitiveness ofthis song. Perhaps the last (3rd) time they repeated the verse was too much, but this is still my 3rd favorite song on the album. I just love that irritated roar at the end.
Swap Meet- This is one of the songs that I found most accessible on first listen (besides AAG).
Mr.Moustache- this song depends on my mood. It's pretty good but not one of my favorites.
Sifting- again, I heard complaints about repetitiveness, and maybe so, but the lyrics are so strange and the tune is wonderful, making it my 4th favorite on the album.
Big Cheese- see Swap Meet.
Downer- *ahem*, the 3rd reason why I give this only 4 stars. Wasn't the Incesticide version enough? Needless to say, this song was a "bonus track" on the copies printed sometime after 1992, and in my humble opinion, there was a reason it was left out the first time."
So much heavier than expected... 18 years later!
J. G. Burtch | Halifax, NS, Canada | 01/24/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"18 Years! This came out in '89! Back when I first bought this on cassette, probably about a month or so after buying "Nevermind", I remember thinking.... "ahhhh, a couple songs are okay". It definitely did not appeal to me. This is not the super-crisp punchy production of Butch Vig. These aren't the pop infused songs that would grace their major label debut. This is Cobain trying to latch on to a sound that his heroes (Melvins being a clear choice) were producing, while also trying to be differnt from that. You can hear a pop sense in there... sometimes you just gotta dig for it. Kurt never hid his influences... the whole band never did... they quite vocally spoke about who inspired them and who they stole from. The great thing is, the bands they liked were actually worth noting in 90's/00's music progresion, unlike today where bands cite their friends as influences. Today this album resonates much stronger with me. The whole grunge "movement" really meant the world to me, and while a lot of meatheads would say the same, the music that came out between '90 and '95 really did shape my entire perspective of what could and couldn't be good. This album is damn good. I'm now a fan of most things "heavy". I can hear these sounds all over bands like High On Fire, Wolfmother, Sunn O))), Queens Of The Stone Age (who didn't need much more influence than themselves... Kyuss), even Black Metal bands like Craft, etc. Real heavy rockers with a penchant for creative flair. Those who want to kill with their music and inspire and make you FEEL and MOVE. This music really moves me today. That's not to say that "Bleach" created a sound, or originated it, but it sure as hell displays it. This album kills. Those who love heavy rock should more than appreciate this. Those who don't appreciate this, don't actually love hard n' heavy rock... you're posing, you're a liar and you should fess up."