Nirvana, "Live At Reading"

88 Billboard Rating

A humbling moment of Nirvana's 1992 performance at England's Reading Festival comes during the intro to the powerful rocker "Lithium." Dressed in a white medical gown and blue jeans, frontman Kurt Cobain hits a wrong note and is forced to restart the tune. It wouldn't be the first instance during the band's 90-minute set that Cobain flubs a song (he struggles to tune his guitar throughout "Love Buzz"), but the thousands of concertgoers who sung along in unison to "Lithium" proved that a few mistakes couldn't spoil this historic event. Cobain isn't remembered for his technical chops, but this Reading appearance-released for the first time on the CD/DVD package "Live at Reading"-captured the trio's skill at turning simple power chords into some of the most memorable rock anthems of the '90s. Filmed less than a year after the release of "Nevermind," the concert features intense performances of "Aneurysm," "Tourette's" and "Territorial Pissings," mixed with such alternative gems as "All Apologies," "Polly" and "Come As You Are." For those who missed Nirvana in the flesh, "Live at Reading" preserves the band's commanding stage presence during its short-lived career. -Mitchell Peters

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