ELVANA UNPLUGGED REVIEW
Elvana, the world’s greatest tribute act are back, this time with an unplugged tour, faithfully recreating Nirvana’s classic ‘MTV Live in New York’ set.
Waiting on stage for the King’s arrival, is a gold lamé backdrop, giant candlesticks and a bronze toilet. Perfectly replicating MTV’s studios classic Nirvana Unplugged set. Save for the metallic throne.
As Elvis enters the building, I wasn’t sure if this would work. Performing ‘About A Girl’ and ‘Come as You Are’ seated was a relatively sedate affair, compared to Elvana’s usual high energy.
Then with ‘Jesus Don’t Want Me for a Sunbeam’, it hits. I’m sold. I’m emotional even. I’m a kid again, somehow I’m watching Nirvana Unplugged for the very first time.
In addition to a cellist, Elvana are joined by guitarist ‘Kenny Smear’, faithfully replicating the sound of the classic MTV set. Despite the jokes, the Elvis/Cobain impersonation/pisstake, Elvana painstakingly honour MTV’s legendary unplugged session.
(Check out our review of the band from 2017)
Regaling stories of watching ‘Nirvana Unplugged’ over-and-over when they were 12, “which was only 10 years ago” Elvis quips, Elvana recreate that one-off experience with complete authenticity. Even the Meat Puppets’ deep cut “Oh Me” is played, a song that didn’t appear years later until the CD release of ‘Live in New York’.
As the gig progresses, Elvana’s trademark energy is unleashed. The band however, stick loyally to Nirvana’s original setlist, expanding it only with Elvis tunes. There’s no Teen Spirit, which would have been sacrilege to play, since it was absent from Nirvana’s set. And true to that most special of night, the band play through solidly without an encore.
Elvana might not be the first tribute act to throw in an Elvis impersonator, that honour goes to the fantastic Dread Zeppelin. But they’re a band who bring so much joy and genuine affection, I can’t imagine a better, or strangely more accurate tribute to Nirvana.
Rating: Burgers Burgers Burgers Burgers Burgers