The stream of previously unreleased Nirvana/Kurt Cobain material that has been trickling out over the last week continued on Wednesday (August 5th), when an acoustic demo of the song “Pennyroyal Tea” and the demo tape from Cobain’s pre-Nirvana band, Fecal Matter, both surfaced online – although the latter was pulled down a short time later.
According to Consequence Of Sound, the “Pennyroyal Tea’ demo was recorded in the winter of 1990 at Cobain’s home in Olympia, Washington by Cobain and Dave Grohl, nearly four years before the track appeared on Nirvana’s final studio album, In Utero. The demo is slower, with Cobain singing in a more guttural voice.
Earlier this week, some 17 previously unheard Nirvana recordings, comprised of demos and alternate mixes, mysteriously surfaced online from an unknown source.
At least four were recorded at the legendary Sound City during the 1991 Nevermind sessions, while others dated from the 1993 sessions for In Utero. All but three have since been pulled offline, although the remaining trio include another take of “Pennyroyal Tea” and an alternate version of “Come As You Are.”
Dave Grohl told us a while back that Nirvana recorded a lot of material that has never seen the light of day:
“There’s a lot of unreleased stuff that no one’s ever heard. There’s a lot of unreleased stuff that I’ve never heard. I mean, I was the fifth drummer. I didn’t join until 1990, but spent a lot of time demoing and recording basement practices, and things like that.”
A selection of unreleased recordings heard on the soundtrack of the recent documentary Kurt Cobain: Montage Of Heck, along with never-before-heard material from Kurt Cobain’s personal archives, is due to be released in November. it is not clear if the music leaked online this week is related to that.
As for Fecal Matter, the band was formed in 1985 by an 18-year-old Cobain, drummer Greg Hokanson, and future Melvins drummer Dale Crover on bass.
The band’s sole, 58-minute demo, Illiteracy Will Prevail, was posted online for the first time ever this week, containing 13 punk rock tracks, but has since been yanked. At least one song on the demo is an early version of a Nirvana cut called “Downer.”