#873: 2014, The Orwells, The Righteous One

by Ray_North on March 31, 2014

There I was the other night, in the Old Monk in Sheffield watching the Liverpool Sunderland match, when who walks into the pub but, Krist Novoselic of Nirvana. I could tell straight away that he was embarrassed to see me, I mean, standing there, with his new mates, wearing his grey suit – clearly, these days, his life as a corporate accountant are a million miles away from the hey-days of grunge, and I respect that: a man’s got to earn a crust, life goes on.

‘Krist’ I said,’it’s me Ray, Ray North.’

He tried to pretend not to know me, but, I knew him straight away and followed him to the bar where he was getting a round of three pints of lager, two glasses of pinot grigio and a diet coke for the lads from accounts.

‘Look,’ I said, ‘Krist, come on – I know it’s hard, but let’s not forget the good times eh?’

We shared a packet of pork scratchings, he tried to sell me some kind of insurance product, then, inevitably, we reminisced about the bassline on Smells Like Teen Spirit – genius, I said to him, and, I meant it. He was mellowing now, and he asked me how the rest of the boys were.

‘Well,’ I said, ‘I am fearful about George.’
‘Why?’ he asked.
‘It’s not good,’ I said, ‘we’re into the third month of the year, and George has yet to post a song from 2014.’
He shook his head ruefully, he shared my concern, he must have felt a similar pain after, well, after Kurt started losing it.

He cast a nervous glance towards his friends, who were now gathered around the quiz machine where someone called Stewart had just won a tenner, and said quietly to me, ‘I don’t do this kind of thing anymore Ray, but check out The Orwells, they’re a band from Illinois, proper grunge influence, loud guitars, check shirts, long greasy hair – they’re good.’

I put my hand on his shoulder – ‘thanks Krist,’ I said and he smiled thin lipped at me, ‘I’d better go,’ he said, ‘I’ve got my annual appraisal in the morning, I don’t want to be too tired you know.’

I nodded. I went back to my hotel room – I downloaded this song. Krist Novoselic, accountant, rock legend, I salute you.

At last a song from 2014. And it’s a belter.

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