Breed (song)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

"Breed"
Song by Nirvana
from the album Nevermind
ReleasedSeptember 24, 1991 (1991-09-24)
RecordedMay–June 1991
Studio
Genre
Length3:03
LabelDGC
Songwriter(s)Kurt Cobain
Producer(s)Butch Vig
Nevermind track listing
12 tracks
  1. "Smells Like Teen Spirit"
  2. "In Bloom"
  3. "Come as You Are"
  4. "Breed"
  5. "Lithium"
  6. "Polly"
  7. "Territorial Pissings"
  8. "Drain You"
  9. "Lounge Act"
  10. "Stay Away"
  11. "On a Plain"
  12. "Something in the Way"

"Breed" is a song by American rock band, Nirvana, written by vocalist and guitarist, Kurt Cobain. It is the fourth song on their 1991 studio album, Nevermind.

Origin and recording[edit]

Written by Cobain in 1989, "Breed" was originally titled "Imodium," after the anti-diarrhea medicine used by Tad Doyle, lead singer of Seattle rock band TAD, during Nirvana's and TAD's shared European tour.[1] It was first performed live on October 8, 1989 at the Lif Ticket Lounge in Omaha, Nebraska.

"Breed" was first recorded in the studio in April 1990 by Butch Vig at Smart Studios in Madison, Wisconsin, during the recording sessions for what was intended to be the band's second album on Sub Pop, their original label.[2] However, this planned album was cancelled after the band signed with DGC Records shortly after. Vig re-recorded the song during the sessions for what became the band's second album and major label debut, Nevermind, in May 1991 at Sound City Studios in Van Nuys, California. Cobain recorded four vocal takes for the song, with each successive take "getting worse because he blew his voice out," as Vig recalls.[3] The first take was chosen as the master.[4] Both recordings of the song also feature the guitar being panned from one channel to the next during the guitar solo to create what Cobain biographer Charles R. Cross called "a dizzying" effect.[5]

Lyrics and composition[edit]

"Breed" addresses themes of teenage apathy and fear within the American middle-class.[6]

Reception[edit]

In 2015, Rolling Stone ranked "Breed" at number four on their ranking of 102 Nirvana songs, with Julianne Escobedo Shepherd calling it "one of the most alive songs on Nevermind."[7]

In 2017, to mark what would have been Cobain's 50th birthday, the Phonographic Performance Limited released a list of the top 20 most played Nirvana songs on television and the radio in the United Kingdom, in which "Breed" was ranked at number 13.[8]

Recording and release history[edit]

Studio versions[edit]

Date recorded Studio Producer/recorder Releases Personnel
April 1990 Smart Studios, Madison, Wisconsin Butch Vig Nevermind (deluxe) (2011)
May 2–28, 1991 Sound City Studios, Van Nuys, California Butch Vig Nevermind (1991)
With the Lights Out (2004)
  • Kurt Cobain (vocals, guitar)
  • Krist Novoselic (bass)
  • Dave Grohl (drums)

Live versions[edit]

Date recorded Venue Releases Personnel
December 3, 1989 London Astoria, London, England From the Muddy Banks of the Wishkah (1996)
  • Kurt Cobain (vocals, guitar)
  • Krist Novoselic (bass)
  • Chad Channing (drums)
March 8, 1991 Commodore Ballroom, Vancouver, Canada Live at the Paramount (2011)
  • Kurt Cobain (vocals, guitar)
  • Krist Novoselic (bass)
  • Dave Grohl (drums, backing vocals)
October 31, 1991 Paramount Theatre, Seattle, Washington Live! Tonight! Sold Out!! (1994)
Live at the Paramount (2011)
  • Kurt Cobain (vocals, guitar)
  • Krist Novoselic (bass)
  • Dave Grohl (drums, backing vocals)
August 30, 1992 Reading Festival, Reading, England Live at Reading (2009)
  • Kurt Cobain (vocals, guitar)
  • Krist Novoselic (bass)
  • Dave Grohl (drums, backing vocals)
December 13, 1993 Pier 48, Seattle, Washington Live and Loud (2013)
  • Kurt Cobain (vocals, guitar)
  • Krist Novoselic (bass)
  • Dave Grohl (drums, backing vocals)
  • Pat Smear (guitar)

Cover versions[edit]

Year Artist Album
2002 Steve Earle Side Tracks
2007 Otep The Ascension

References[edit]

  1. ^ Azerrad, Michael (1994). Come As You Are: The Story of Nirvana. Doubleday. p. 137. ISBN 0-385-47199-8.
  2. ^ Azerrad, Michael (1994). Come As You Are: The Story of Nirvana. Doubleday. p. 137. ISBN 0-385-47199-8.
  3. ^ Jovanovic, Rob (September 2004). Nirvana" The Recording Sessions. S A F Pub Ltd. ISBN 978-0946719600.
  4. ^ Jovanovic, Rob (September 2004). Nirvana" The Recording Sessions. S A F Pub Ltd. ISBN 978-0946719600.
  5. ^ Jovanovic, Rob (September 2004). Nirvana" The Recording Sessions. S A F Pub Ltd. ISBN 978-0946719600.
  6. ^ Jovanovic, Rob (September 2004). Nirvana" The Recording Sessions. S A F Pub Ltd. ISBN 978-0946719600.
  7. ^ Shepherd, Julianne Escebedo (April 8, 2015). "No Apologies: All 102 Nirvana Songs Ranked". Rolling Stone. Retrieved October 23, 2018.
  8. ^ 20 most-played Nirvana songs revealed to mark Kurt Cobain’s 50th birthday planetrock.com. Retrieved March 3, 2017.

External links[edit]