Monday, July 05, 2010

Survival in a police state

I have to admit that at one time I sneered at Nine Inch Nails. Trent Reznor was so... emo. But NIN has gotten quite a bit edgier as the years go by. This is the song "Survivalism", off of the 2007 album Year Zero, and is both noisy and creepy. Enjoy. Or not.

-- Badtux the Music Penguin


  1. I've listened to NIN from the beginning. I had a friend who was a DJ and gave me an advance copy of "Pretty Hate Machine". I still think it is one of those albums that, even now, is still a little ahead of its industrial time.

    Each new release since has shown that Trent continues to evolve, both musically and personally. Trent produces tracks that the mainstream audience doesn't take the time to understand because of the accompanying music isn't 'catchy'.

    I'm not sure about 'emo' though...

  2. In the mid-90s, I too used to sneer at the phenomenon that was NIN. Buncha noisy, whiny depressed jerks and their makeup-dripping followers. Back then, I thought there was more of a chance for the world and I used to listen to a lot more sensitive singer-songerwriter types.

    What gave me a lot more respect for Reznor was hearing Johnny Cash's cover of "Hurt" and finding out later that it was a NIN song. Reznor puts out some deep lyrics. Too bad they're so hard to understand.

    The video was plus creepshowgood, too.

  3. Bukko, Reznor's original "Hurt" was whiny emo drivel, what gave it resonance when Johnny Cash covered his version of it (which rewrote some of the lyrics to give it a religious subtext that did not exist in the original, BTW) was Johnny Cash revamping it into a reflection upon mortality at the end of life. Reznor has moved on considerably since those days in the early 90's.

    Anteater, what disgusted me about early NIN was how whiny it was, "oh woe is me" and so forth. I'm not fond of whining, whether it is from a spoilt child or a supposed grown man. But recent NIN is *not* whiny...

    -- Badtux the Music Penguin

  4. Okay, I'll give you that it was a bit 'emo' from that early album. But it was also very raw, emotive and candid...something that mainstream music only touches upon once in a while.

    "Happiness in Slavery" is quite possibly one of the best NIN songs, in my opinion, with his recent work creeping up on greatness.

    But then, I'm musically all over the place. I like Gordon Lightfoot as much as I like Nine Inch Nails.


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