Seems like every band has their fair share of drama. Usually your typical addiction or ego type problems, but sometimes it goes a bit deeper than that. Today’s band started off innocent enough – but years later became the centerpiece of one of the biggest controversies in rock and roll history.
Hole formed when singer Courtney Love put an ad in the Los Angeles paper the Recycler looking to start a band. Guitarist Eric Erlandson responded to the ad and met Love in a coffee shop. In spite of having a feeling Love was a bit eccentric, he decided to dive in and the band was born in 1989. Initial sessions included Love screaming into the microphone for 2-3 hours while the band played behind her. Erlandson stated that the band completely lacked direction, but they could all hear something in her voice that made them think the band had a bright future.
The band was floundering around for a few years, seeing some slight indie success locally to the LA area. Love began dating Nirvana front man Kurt Cobain sometime in late 1990. Love became pregnant with the couple’s only child in 1991, while writing/recording Hole’s sophomore album. Due to pregnancy and birth, everything got put on hold a bit, and in early ’94 is looked like the album was going to get pushed back to late summer. Cobain committed suicide on April 8th, 1994 – four days before the album was pushed to be released.
Timing and morality aside, Live Through This released April, 12th 1994. The album consisted of some new material, and tracks Hole had been performing since the early days of local clubs. Cobain had been present during most of the recording, due to his success and the band looking for feedback. Contrary to popular belief, the songs were not written by Cobain, but he did provide backup vocals and drumming on a couple tracks. Reports were a few members of the band using crystal meth during the recording, which supposedly led to a couple tracks being recorded differently than composed.
I love Nirvana, one of my favorite bands from the 90’s. Hole isn’t far from that genre and feel, especially this album. You can take a track like ‘She Walks On Me’, and it feels exactly like a riff you’d hear off ‘In Utero’. It’s very grunge and punk rock to the core, and easily identifies with the alt rock revolution of the time. Lyrically, there is no doubt this album is written from the female perspective, which is sort of refreshing. On top of that, it rocks pretty hard, which is really all you look for in this sort of album.
There is a lot of speculation that maybe love murdered Cobain, and that this album came out when it did simply to capitalize on the tragedy. I’m not much of a conspiracy theorist, but I can tell you this album is solid. It’s a great listen for any alt rock junkie like me. And if you are, drop that $5.99 today and jam out.
Top 3 Tracks: