When future Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic met Melvins guitarist Buzz Osborne in 1983 while working at an Aberdeen, Washington, Taco Bell, Osborne helped launch Novoselic's hardcore education by loaning him records by Black Flag, Flipper, the Butthole Surfers and Minor Threat. When original Melvins drummer Mike Dillard stepped down shortly thereafter, Novoselic introduced Osborne to drummer Dale Crover, who remains behind the kit today. The Melvins' notoriously noisy practice sessions attracted all sorts of local admirers, including Novoselic's friend Kurt Cobain. Crover would play drums very briefly with Nirvana, but when the band needed a permanent replacement in 1990, it was Osborne and Crover who facilitated Novoselic and Cobain's introduction to Dave Grohl. Fruitful encounters such as indirectly causing Nirvana's formation make the Melvins measurably monumental, but what ultimately makes the second-most-famous band to come out of Aberdeen important is the wide-­reaching influence of its sludgy sonic signature. Twenty-five years and 17 albums later (most recently 2008's Nude With Boots), it's hard to imagine contemporary bands like Mastodon, Boris or Isis even existing without them. Perhaps due to sheer heaviness, comparisons to Black Sabbath have followed the Melvins since their inception, but it's the combination of that grounding in early American hardcore with abundance of affection for experimentation that defines them.


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