Kurt Cobain, guitarist with the best-selling rock group Nirvana, Tuesday denied published reports that Geffen Records has interfered with the recording of the group’s new album.
A report in the April 19 Chicago Tribune by rock critic Greg Kot quoted Steve Albini as stating that Geffen and Nirvana’s Gold Mountain management considered the recorded tracks for the new album “an indulgence.” Albini, who produced tracks for the group’s forthcoming follow-up record to its 4 million-selling major label debut, “Nevermind,” added that he had “no faith this record will be released.”
However, Cobain Tuesday issued a statement saying, “There has been no pressure from our record label to change the tracks we did with Albini. We have 100% control of our music.” The statement conceded, however, that the group is remixing some tracks.
No release date has been set for the album, but an early fall bow is expected , according to Geffen.
Albini, whose track record includes stints as a producer for the Pixies, PJ Harvey and dozens of underground bands, favors a harsh, guitar-driven sound that little resembles the commercial sheen favored by radio.
“Geffen and the band’s management hate the record,” Albini told the Tribune. “They considered it an indulgence when Nirvana asked to record with me. I have no faith this record will be released. It sounds different than any record made this year. It’s not a record for wimps.”
Cobain said Tuesday that Albini “would not spend much time on the mixes and overall we — the band — felt the vocals were not loud enough on a few of the tracks. We want to change that.
“Steve has made a career out of being anti-rock establishment, but being commercial or anti-commercial is not what makes a good rock record. It’s the songs and until we have the songs recorded the way we want them, Nirvana will not release this record.”
The Chicago Tribune also said Albini spoke with Cobain about interference from Geffen exex. “(The band members) were ecstatic about the record. But every person they work for tells them it’s terrible.”
Tuesday’s announcement from Geffen indicated that the group chose to respond to Newsweek’s report this week of the alleged interference, which calls the Albini-produced tracks “unreleasable.”
Ed Rosenblatt, president of Geffen, added, “Although it’s generally our policy not to comment on rumors, this situation with Nirvana has snowballed out of hand. The simple truth is, as I have assured the members of Nirvana and their management all along, we will release whatever record the band delivers to us.
“We categorically deny rumors that we have censored the creativity of Nirvana in any way,” Rosenblatt concluded. “When the band has finished their album, to their satisfaction, they will turn it in and we’ll give it a release date.”
A statement from Gold Mountain Management said Nirvana was “considering doing some additional recording and it is not yet decided on the final composition of the album. A release date has not been set yet, but everyone involved would like to see the album out in early fall.”