100% HEAVY / 100% Free / 0% Spam


Share This:

“If you wanna see a genuine Nirvana performance and go home feeling like you’d been at a Nirvana show, this is the one that you need to see.”

Jon O’Connor

Grunge fans rejoice as the raw energy of Nirvana returns to Australia!

Direct from the UK, the world’s number one tribute to the Seattle legends, Nirvana Tribute, are making their way back to Aussie shores for their fourth visit, and for the first time will be hitting New Zealand as well to pay homage to, and celebrate the life of Kurt Cobain.

Tribute bands are a dime-a-dozen these days, and quality versions are rarer than hens teeth, especially in the case of Nirvana tribute acts. It seems every country has more than a handful of bands claiming to pay homage to the original artist and their music, but in reality turn out to be nothing more than semi-adequate wanna-be’s who are just in it for the quick buck.

Sound harsh? Well I should know, having worked with one of the best and most popular tribute bands ever, ACCADACCA.

There’s only one other band that I have ever seen manage to capture the raw intensity and musical brilliance of the band they are paying tribute to, and that is Nirvana Tribute. Especially frontman Jon O’Conner, who is that similar in looks, presence and voice to Kurt Cobain himself that you could close your eyes at their gig at the local pub and easily be transported back to The Duchess Of York Hotel in Leeds back in 1989, standing in front of the actual Nirvana in a smoke-stained, overcrowded and sweaty club.

Nirvana Tribute has been hailed as worthy successors the world over, with countless tours and new territory conquered on a yearly basis and even more that unfortunately miss out.

HEAVY caught up with frontman Jon O’Conner recently to talk more about Nirvana Tribute plus the man and legacy honoured each and every time the band gets on stage.

“The people seem to like us there,” he shrugged when we mention the band must be doing something right to be invited back for a fourth tour of Australia, “so we’ll always go back. We love it as well. I think on my first visit to Australia, I was completely blown away. Just the hospitality and the people there… you can’t beat it.”

We point out the fact that Australians are known for their honest nature in general, but even more so when it comes to music, so if Nirvana Tribute have managed to win us over things are looking pretty good.

“I think we would have known if they weren’t happy,” he laughed. “They made us feel right at home on that very first trip, so I’m sure the fourth one will be just the same.”

As mentioned earlier, there are an uncomfortably large number of tribute bands doing the rounds, with Nirvana being right up there as the most popular band to attempt. We ask O’Conner how he feels about such bands who ultimately only serve to denigrate the efforts of others like Nirvana Tribute who actually take pride in their work.

“At the moment there is an almost oversaturation of the market,” he agreed. “There’s some substandard Nirvana tribute bands, but this is the one to come and see. If you wanna see a genuine Nirvana performance and go home feeling like you’d been at a Nirvana show, this is the one that you need to see. Plus we bring a little bit of chaos with us as well (laughs).”

In the full interview, Jon talks more about what fans can expect from the show, headlining the Louder Than Love run of shows while here, the resurgence of grunge music and how far he thinks it will go, recreating the magic of Nirvana and what things Nirvana Tribute do to make that happen, separating himself from the stigma that comes with portraying Kurt Cobain, his thoughts on the enduring legacy of the great man, what attracts him to Nirvana‘s music, what people find so special about it, living up to fan expectation and more.

Discover more like this on HEAVY:

Our Picks.

Get the HEAVY

Get the HEAVY Digi-Mag in-boxed weekly. 100% HEAVY / 0%SPAM.