What does Kurt Cobain's mixtape tell us about him?
Geege Schuman stashed this in Kurt Cobain
Recorded using a two-track recorder (again, according to Marander), the mix is really fucking annoying in that it only plays about 10 seconds of any given thing, but that’s also why it’s fucking brilliant. Most of us use mixtapes as a way of introducing ourselves, bonding, flirting... we place one track after another like footsteps down a straight path. The frantic and dynamic nature of Cobain’s mix implies a level of care and creativity most of us would never be arsed with. He’s basically taken William S. Burroughs “cut and paste” technique and applied it to sound.
By nature, mixtapes are inherently personal. Montage of Heck is an abrasive, almost psychotic and hilarious scrapbook that provides a near uncomfortable insight to Kurt Cobain’s life at that point. This isn’t something commercial or considered, it’s a different kind of creative project undertaken almost entirely for personal enjoyment. If the dates are correct, it would’ve been put together during the lead up to Nirvana’s debut album, Bleach, released in June 1989.