Tuesday, February 01, 2005

A Short Musical Interlude

While all those big fans probably knew months ago, Nine Inch Nails is releasing a new album in May called With Teeth, and the live lineup was released a couple of days ago. Performing with Mr. Reznor is former Icarus Line guitarist Aaron North, A Perfect Circle and Marilyn Manson bassist Jeordie White, drummer Jerome Dillon and keyboardist Alessandro Cortini.

So prepare for the deluge of promotion. The poster boy for closet rivetheads is back.

I don't have high hopes for the album, although I'm always hopeful to be surprised. Downward Spiral was a masterwork of pop, industrial and metal, and Treznor will probably never reach that height again. People who would never, never, ever listen to anything even remotely industrial or electronic accepted NIN, and it opened up the playing field for a short time. With the giant force of NIN alongside smaller acts like Machines of Loving Grace, Gravity Kills, and few others industrial was the next big thing for a month or two. Maryilyn Manson's a whole other deal, though.

There is this small part of me that hopes Treznor has it in him to rejuvenate a field of music that's essentially dead. Even the big boys like Skinny Puppy have moved on to forms a good bit different from what they used to do (curiously, the guitarist on their last album is also from A Perfect Cicle). But then, Puppy was all about evolution anyway. More info for the curious at the offical site of NIN.

On a completely different track, Cream is doing a very short reunion tour in the U.K. I'm not a big classic rock guy, and Clapton even less so, but Cream is one of those rare exceptions. Clapton by himself always comes off to me like an inauthentic white guy doing a passable job with the blues. But Cream was it's own animal, and was wholly different. I'd definitely make an effort to see them if they bother to come stateside. But I doubt Baker and Bruce would bother.

I'll have one more review up later tonight, or early tomorrow. Most of today's been taken up by the evil of income taxes.



LadyLitBlitzin said...

I, for one, am looking very much forward to the new album! Yay, thanks for posting about it, I'm not always so good about keeping up with who's doing what these days.

I really liked the album "The Fragile" -- maybe it's just me but I thought it had such amazing moments. In some ways, I liked it more than "The Downward Spiral." Not sure why.

Speaking of the old days, I threw the Chris Connelly album that has "Come Down Here" into my Amazon cart (the legendary gift certificate haul, ha). I think that's such a cool song and I'd never heard the entire album so I'm looking forward to that.

But back to NIN, he did do a real breakout. I remember thinking it was so weird to see NIN stickers on pickup trucks and SUVs (although that scared me, too). Reznor did for industrial what Nirvana did for punk, maybe... although I don't think that many people were maybe as interested in delving into other industrial bands as they might have been about delving into punk legends...

I am having a weird sense of deja vu at the moment for some reason...

Hebdomeros said...

I love Connely's voice. I have two of his albums, and like them both pretty well. So different from what he's done in various projects with Martin Atkins, but still really good.

I liked Fragile, just not as much as Downward Spiral. I listened to both yesterday, as well as Pretty Hate Machine. All good, but D.S. still surprises me here and there. The others don't. But a lot of that's personal taste. I guess I'm hopeful for the new album, but still skeptical. Either way, I'm sure I'll buy it.

Jen said...

I listened to The Downward Spiral a few months back, and it made me feel kind of embarassed (so much so that I turned my radio down at a traffic light) because I so closely associate that album with my own periods of past angst that seem, now, kind of overwrought. I think that's a fine line that musicians such as Reznor, who tap into devastation and desperation, have to walk. If they keep churning out similar albums, they're accused of pandering, or, more seriously, of not growing as artists or people. If they continue to explore other sounds, moods, and emotional states, they sometimes lose the fan base that first propelled them to fame (and don't mind buying the same album twenty times--did I hear someone say the Cure?) Anyway, I would love to hear something new and completely different from Trent--it would serve validate the talent we've seen in the past and also remind us that he, as well as we, are not the same as we were ten years ago. And that's usually a good thing.

Hebdomeros said...

Well said, Jen. I definitely look for artists who evolve, even in small ways. That's a big part of why I admire someone like Bowie so much. He's been able to adapt his Bowie-ness to so many different forms.

For some reason, though, I do forgive the Cure. Perhaps because I started liking them at the formative age of 11, and they were the first band I liked that my parents didn't really get. That and I always like the effecty, sweeping guitar sound. The lyrics, though, sometimes made me wince.

LadyLitBlitzin said...

I think The Fragile did manage to evolve, actually. There are moments of heartwrenching beauty on that album (well, in my opinion). I don't think Downward Spiral has embarrassed me in recent years, but Pretty Hate Machine kind of does.

I'm also pretty forgiving of the Cure. Although I remember somebody saying when Bloodflowers was about to come out that it was "the closest thing to Pornography the Cure had put out since Pornography" -- nah. But then again, why should it have been since we're talking about similar albums here, ha. I guess just because Pornography was an amazing album.