Nirvana 2002

Recordings 89-91

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This disc collects all the existing recordings of a decent Swedish death metal act. They've got the distorted guitar tone, the D-beat drumming, and vocals that sound heavily indebted to Obituary's John Tardy (albeit much more comprehensible, whether for good or ill) -- basically, they check all the boxes. But it's hard to say what they bring to the music's history that's new, other than the story behind their name. They had just decided to call themselves Nirvana instead of Prophet 2002 when they came across a single by some Seattle-based garage punk outfit with the same name, so they tacked "2002" on, combining old and new and figuring that would cover their bases. Nirvana 2002 wound up toiling in total obscurity for three years, then calling it quits -- there are absolutely no officially released recordings here; it's all demos, rehearsals and one live track. Indeed, the group's four-song Disembodied Spirits demo -- their major achievement -- appears twice, in a newly remixed version that actually paints them in a pretty favorable light, musically speaking, and at the end of the disc in its original, raw, 20-year-old form. Oh, and about that live track: It was recorded at a one-off 2007 reunion performance, staged to celebrate the release of Daniel Ekeroth's exhaustive book Swedish Death Metal, in which Nirvana 2002 were recalled quite favorably. If you're a total obsessive like Ekeroth, you'll love this; if you're just a garden-variety metalhead, you'll probably enjoy it but shouldn't go out of your way to hear it, or come in expecting revelations.

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