Last year, Josh Jones took a good look at what happens when Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” gets shifted from minor to major key, and Radiohead’s “Creep” moves in the opposite direction. Suddenly, two songs you know so well sound so different.
Over the weekend, “Sleep Good,” a psychedelic pop band from Austin, TX, took their own whack at shifting Nirvana’s 1991 song into major key. And the result will catch you a bit off-guard. A grunge anthem abruptly turns into a cheery pop song, and the bopping cheerleaders in the original music video strangely fit into the mood of the adapted song.
You can find a version of “Teen Sprite,” as the song has been dubbed, over on Soundcloud.
If you would like to sign up for Open Culture’s free email newsletter, please find it here.
If you would like to support the mission of Open Culture, consider making a donation to our site. It’s hard to rely 100% on ads, and your contributions will help us continue providing the best free cultural and educational materials to learners everywhere. You can contribute through PayPal, Patreon, Venmo (@openculture) and Crypto. Thanks!
Watch Nirvana Perform “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” Just Two Days After the Release of Nevermind (September 26, 1991)
Hear Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” Shifted from Minor to Major Key, and Radiohead’s “Creep” Moved from Major to Minor
1,000 Musicians Play Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” Live, at the Same Time
No offense to anyone who worked on this but to me it sounds quite horrible :)) Not sure it’s an interesting to move to go from minor to major… The opposite on the other end can be quite amazing, like when A Perfect Circle covered Lennon’s Imagine, it brought such a weird entire different mood than the original, a very down one but in a good way, in a beautiful way…
There’s a small band called Orange Way who made a major chords happy cover back in 2008. It’s been commented by the French Magazine Longueur d’ondes ;)