Drain You

An often exasperating boxed set offers the final word on Nirvana's legacy

Nirvana refuted the tired rock aphorism that the further a band gets from its humble origins, the less connection it maintains with Truth and Beauty. In Utero was worlds better than Bleach.
Nirvana refuted the tired rock aphorism that the further a band gets from its humble origins, the less connection it maintains with Truth and Beauty. In Utero was worlds better than Bleach.

The next-to-last song on the boxed set's third disc is an acoustic demo of "You Know You're Right," the single from 2002's greatest-hits set. The version the radio played is a much better song than this one, but the way Cobain plays it--carefully and quietly, as if to avoid waking a baby sleeping in the next room--is almost unbearably poignant in context. It reminds you of how briefly Cobain actually lived as a dad--that despite the money and celebrity and admiration, his final class crossover into fatherhood ended almost before it began.

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