In Utero is another album that is hard to tell between legit pressings and bootlegs. Rather than take a chance on one on ebay or pay top dollar for one I know is legit, I waited till all of Nirvana’s albums were re-pressed about a year ago (2009), a process that is still ongoing. The 2009 ORG re-issue of In Utero (first three photos below) was mastered from the original analog tapes. I’m not sure how many of these re-presses were made, but the first 4,000 copies were on colored vinyl, 180 gram cream for the U.S. pressing, and the rest, an unknown amount, are on black vinyl. There was also a Euro pressing for the 2009 ORG re-press, which was done on neon yellow instead of cream vinyl. Copies were also pressed on black vinyl for the Euro pressing.
In 2013 Geffen did two separate pressings of In Utero, both of which are special editions. In late September they first released the 20th Anniversary Edition of the album, and then in late November released the 2013 Mix.
The vinyl version of the 20th Anniversary edition of In Utero (fourth to ninth pictures) differs from other releases in two important ways; first is the track listing which has the studio album on the first four sides (A,B,C,D) and bonus tracks on the fourth and fifth sides (E,F). Second is the fact that the record is a triple LP instead of a single or double LP.
Pressing info was never released and probably never will be. This will likely be kept in print for years, with the dog and pony show of it being sold out for a few months and then a couple thousand more copies will be pressed. It may even see colored vinyl pressings as well. This version of the album comes in a triple panel gatefold jacket and is pressed on 180 gram black vinyl. The jacket is very nicely done and is not too cheesy or re-hashed photos/artwork/layout.
The price of this edition of In Utero is a bit high, close to $60 depending on where and when you buy it. If you take advantage of the many sales that inevitably happen at one distro or record store over the course of the year you can get it for 10, 15, even 20% off; maybe even get free shipping too. I got this version of the album for $45. I feel that price is worth it considering what you get. But I am a Nirvana nut and will buy anything (for the most part) Nirvana related when it comes to vinyl. The markup on Nirvana stuff is crazy, perfect example is this year’s Record Store Day release; a Nirvana 7” retailing for $14. It’s because their fans are ravenous and snatch up anything regardless of price. A lot can be contributed to Courtney Love as well, who loves to make as much money off Kurt as she can by exploiting Nirvana material, all while still playing the grieving widow card.
Here are the bonus track, in order, for the 20th Anniversary Edition: E-side: “Gallons Of Rubbing Alcohol Flow Through The Strip,” “Marigold,” “Moist Vagina (2013 Mix),” “Sappy (2013 Mix).” F-side: “I Hate Myself And Want To Die (2013 Mix),” “Pennyroyal Tea (Scott Litt Mix),” “Heart-Shaped Box (Original Steve Albini Mix)” and “All Apologies (Original Steve Albini Mix).”
The vinyl version of the 2013 Mix of In Utero (pictures start with the 10th image) differs from other releases in three important ways; first is the track listing which is entirely composed of alternate mixes of album tracks. Obviously this version of the album was previously unreleased, although some of the songs have been floating the internet after Nirvana’s untimely ending. Second is the fact that the record is a double LP instead of a single or triple LP. Third, and the most noticeable, is the alternate artwork. Instead of the yellow background, the background is now black.
This was a 2013 Black Friday Record Store Day release, limited to 5000 copies worldwide. There is some confusion with the pressing info however, as some sites, including the official RSD list, listed the record being on clear vinyl. As is typical with every Black Friday RSD, I never venture out that day, at least before noon. I will never deal with those crowds, plus my local record store, along with all others, are allowed to take pre-orders on Black Friday RSD release, so I can pre-order all the stuff I want and know I’ll be getting it without any hassle. I can sleep in, avoid the nut jobs on the roads, avoid the lines, avoid the circling for a parking spot, avoid the frustration of having a record sell out before I get in the store. Back on topic, the copy of the 2013 mix of In Utero I received was on black vinyl, not clear.
The price of the 2013 Mix Edition of In Utero is a bit high, close to $40 retail on Black Friday. The 2013 Mix is still widely available to this day, almost two years after its release, for around $35.