Tuesday, October 11, 2005

nin 10/7/05

i never got to see nine inch nails in the 90s. i think i knew better than to ask my parents if i could go see them in madison or milwaukee (chicago would have been absolutely out of the question). rem, sure; nin, with marilyn manson opening, uh, NO. i owned and proudly wore at least three nin t-shirts (black, of course) until i was about 23. i always thought trent was ugly(ish)-hot. i always thought that the band was a lot more thoughtful and artistic than what the mainstream music press and typical-kid rock fans gave them credit for. it never ceased to strike me as sincerely surreal to see sorority girls happily dance and sing along to "closer" at college bars. i still believe that natural born killers, produced by trent, is the best soundtrack ever released, and certainly one of the few that flows seamlessly. i love that he sang back-up on a tori amos song, and i love that he bought john lennon's mellotron and played it on manson's "cryptorchid" (one of my favorite songs, and i'm not entirely sure why). when i went on a garden district walking tour in new orleans, the tour guide pointed out his house, complete with black curtains, and told us that it used to be a funeral home. i'm not as huge of a fan as some people (and there are a LOT of those people), but i like him/his band, and i respect him a lot.

so i was so happy for how ENTIRELY BADASS the nin show at the allstate arena last friday was. for reals.

the crowd was about as eclectic as you could possibly be in an all-white crowd: goth kids, punk kids, rural couples, normal folks who like rock shows, sluts, jocks, heavy metal guys, bikers, the heavily tattooed, the heavily eyelinered, moms with their 8th graders, indie kids, the trenchcoat mafia. i would say that a solid 20 percent of those in attendence never got the memo about not wearing the band's t-shirt to their show. this also includes the fellow with the nin raincoat (homemade) and those with nin neck tattoos (also seemingly homemade).

queens of the stone age opened (so did autolux, which we missed). the crowd sat in its seats, and those in general admission just sort of stood there, waiting. josh homme did not care for this - he taunted some guy in the front ("what did you say? take the dick out of your mouth, i can't understand you. what? huh? put the dick back in - you make more sense that way.") and before their last song he likened playing to us as "playing for a bunch of dead people." i was happy to hear "the lost art of keeping a secret" but i guess i was alone in that. my favorite qotsa story is that a bunch of hearing-impaired people showed up to a venue in england after they had seen the "songs for the deaf" tour advertised.

so nin played two hours, no breaks, no encore. lots of old stuff - opened with "pinion" (playing behind a gauzy white curtain) and closed with "head like a hole" - mixed well with the new. i wish i had heard "happiness in slavery" and "all the love in the world," but those are minor complaints. they seriously rocked hardcore, and the first half an hour made me so freaking giddy and happy - it was just too fucking awesome. at one point they dropped the white curtain again to show some trent-tastic video clips (nature at its most beautiful and hideous, monkeys, war, corpses, george bush - booed, of course - ameobas, static, etc) while they played. i was surprised to hear "hurt," as i read somewhere that trent can't even listen to the original version since johnny cash basically reclaimed it, but i'm sure that's all hyperbole. i tend to forget how easy it is to dance to nin - it's downright dark disco, yo.

there is something precious about 10,000 boys yelling "i gave you my purity and my purity you stole." also, the lyrics "this world rejects me/this world threw me away" are sorta ironic considering i just gave him 50 bucks to rail about how isolated he is.

here is the playlist, stolen from the blog of someone who REALLY LIKES NIN:

Love Is Not Enough
Terrible Lie
The Line Begins To Blur
March of the Pigs
The Frail
The Wretched
Gave Up
Right Where It Belongs
Beside You In Time
The Hand That Feeds
Head Like A Hole


lostsatellite said...

I thought you saw Nine Inch Nails on the tour with David Bowie???

my one Nine Inch Nails concert experience back in 2000 was excellent...the only downside being witnessing an obnoxiously drunk threesome that would high five each other (I wish I was not scarred with the mental image of them), and one girl scantily clad in leather and fishnets that was passed out the whole time and had to be carried out on a guy's should afterwards...but I really loved hearing the slower and more contemplative stuff like "La Mer" and "The Great Below", and seeing the imagery that was projected on giant LCD screens, the best...

I still can't believe I was able to meet and touch Trent after the show...there were only a small cluster of people waiting around afterwards, and it was cold, and the security guard made it seem as though it would be a long time before he would come out...but once I saw the dog, I knew he would be out shortly...while we waited, my friend Justin and I speculated on what we would do when we met him...I just wanted to give him a hug...sure enough, Justin got to meet him first and he decided to give him a hug too...I got to shake Trent's hand, and tell him that I just wanted to give him a hug, and then it happened...he said something while we hugged, and I think it was, "I guess I'm huggable today" or something...I will never forget feeling that voice vibrate from his chest to mine, oh my god...and oddly enough, someone was videotaping the whole meet and greet thing, so there's some kind of footage of this stored away somewhere...and I think Charlie Clouser was there, and I would have wanted to acknowledge that if I was certain that was him...hard to tell when he's not on stage and I haven't obsessed over him like I did with Trent...

oddly enough, I bought the new album when it came out in May, but I have yet to listen to it...I've distanced myself from listening to Nine Inch Nails much (suited my anger and frustration during high school and early college, and not so much now)...I still respect Trent and think some of his music is incredibly amazing (two tracks off of Still, in particular), but I also recognize how limited his vocal and lyrical abilities can be at times, and I just don't lust after him or crave his music on a daily basis anymore...

SarahReznor said...

I got my first nin album while I was having a nervous breakdown, a friend decided I needed it – The Downward spiral… I guess it seemed like a good idea at the time! It was – it got me through.

I love Trent. I love his brutal honesty. I love that he doesn’t give a fuck and says what we all think. I love that he uses his anger and violence to fight his own demons. I love that he’s still making music even though different and from another place, still honest and still gets to me.

One song on the new album “everyday is exactly the same”. I’m still surprised how much it hit the spot.

It’s funny how I always seem to find nin fans no matter where I go. I live in Israel so I will never see nin.