Guitar Hero 5 Pisses all over Kurt Cobain's Legacy

3 minute read

He lived his life as a recluse. Despite the fame and fortune, Kurt Cobain tried to find solace in spending time alone. When his mainstream success got the better of him, he took his life. This was in 1994, before the digital age had begun. Last month, the latest installment of Guitar Hero was released. This version contains the likeness of actual musicians like Shirley Manson, Johnny Cash and of course, Kurt Cobain.

It all goes terribly wrong

There's nothing wrong with including the 90s grunge rocker in a videogame so that wannabee rockers, like myself, can play "Smells Like Teen Spirit" while Kurt is jamming in the background. The problem is that players can use Kurt Cobain for any song. Yeah that's right, Cobain can be used in rock songs, country songs, teen songs or worst, Bon Jovi songs. Here's the now infamous clip of a creepy digital Kurt Cobain lipsyching along to Jon Bon and others.

Did you just throw up a bit? I know I did.

Speaking of giving love a bad name

Ah yes, our beloved Courtney. While she won't be walking away with any "mom of the year" awards any time soon, she at least has some respect left for her late hubby. Love has stepped forth and threatened to sue the game's producer, Activision, for allowing Kurt to be used in this fashion. Sure she could have done this months ago but she's been busy trying to recover Kurt's ashes or auctioning off his belongings. In 2006, she sold 25% of the rights to Nirvana and made the following statement:

"My goal is to keep the music very true to who the songwriter was and what his passions and tastes would be"

Here's Kurt Cobain covering Ex-Girlfriend by No Doubt, the way he would have wanted it:

Activision Vs Love

In reponse, Activision's suits claim that not only did Love sign the contract and read the fine print, but that she already cashed the check. Courtney's rebuttal is that she didn't get a cent from the deal, nor did she sign off to it. She then posted this on her Twitter account: "FOR THE RECORD I DID NOT APPROVE KURTS AVATAR FOR GUYITARHERO5," which is perhaps the most coherent of her Twitter updates. Ex-Nirvana bandmates, David Grohl and Krist Novoselic have both expressed their dissatisfaction with the game's inclusion of Kurt and have asked Activision to lock Cobain from performing in non-Nirvana songs.

UpVenue's Take

We appreciate what Activision is doing with these Guitar Hero games but there is no one in their right mind who can possibly believe that Kurt Cobain would have wanted his songs to be in Guitar Hero, let alone his avatar. It is against everything he stood for, everything he believed in and ultimately, the commercialization of his music is what led to his suicide. Out of respect to his legacy, we are hoping they issue a mandatory patch to correct this all.

I will end this with Kurt Cobain's response to all of this Brouhaha:

My favorite inside source
I'll kiss your open sores
I appreciate your concern
You're gonna stink and burn

Rape me
Rape me, my friend