For the last couple of weeks, there has been a lot of rumors and gossip surrounding Nine Inch Nails and the Trent Reznor camp. In an interview with Rolling Stone a few weeks back, Reznor made some rather vague comments about possible new Nine Inch Nails music and maybe a tour. Now, if anyone has read or listened to anything Trent has said in the past, they wouldn’t bother holding their breath for anything new. Dude is notorious for running about 2 years behind schedule (which is alright cause 99% of what he does is solid). That being said, when I read that article, I thought to myself “cool, but whatever”.
Then, a few days ago, Reznor had a Q&A session with his fans on Reddit. One of the questions asked concerned the lighting setup for NIN shows and the work behind that. Reznor answered the question then wrote “Cryptic additional comment: 2013”. Reznor’s response, along with the rest of the Q&A session pretty much confirmed in my mind that NIN would be back and touring next year. Really, it can’t get any more direct than that. It’s the straight shit from the horses mouth (what the hell does that even mean) so to speak.
As a huge Reznor and NIN fan, I’m fucking excited beyond belief about this. His new band, How To Destroy Angels, just released a new EP (which is honestly pretty god damn good) but it doesn’t hold a candle to NIN. So from a future perspective, I’m really pumped up. But……
I thought Trent “retired” Nine Inch Nails. I can’t remember seeing anything that explicitly stated that NIN was done, but that was kind of my assumption. I thought it was an unspoken certainty that it was over. Three years ago, NIN embarked on the final leg of the “Wave Goodbye” tour. This stretch saw NIN play in small clubs in New York, Chicago and L.A. as kind a kind of Sayonara! to the band. Being a huge fan (and thinking this would be my last time to see em) I flew to L.A. and caught the show at the Henry Fonda Theatre. Words can’t describe how good that final show was. Aside from the multitude of Hollywood douchbags filming the show on their cell phones, the concert was incredible. Check out this rad live clip from that night:
See the dude crowdsurfing around the three minute mark??? Yup, that’s me. Did I mention that I love Nine Inch Nails?
All this excitement about NIN’s eminent return got me thinking though. There have been some bands that I absolutely adore that have “retired” or broken up, only to come back years later to disappoint me. Sure, there have been some pretty awesome comebacks (see Californication-era Red Hot Chili Peppers or Atari Teenage Riot’s Activate album) but save for a few exceptions, bands that reunite usually end up bad. For example:
- Ministry: This one makes me really sad to write. I’ve been a Ministry fan for as long as I’ve been listening to music. In fact, Filth Pig is probably one of my top 25 albums of all time. ALL TIME!!! So when Ministry announced a while back that they were getting back together for a new album and tour, I was stoked (especially after their “final” album The Last Sucker, which kicked more ass than any record they’ve put out since the early 2000’s). When their new album Relapse was finally released, I was a first day buyer. I anxiously put the disc in my player, threw on my headphones and waited for the album to blow me away. Instead I was greeted with an album that was so completely boring, uninspired and comical (not in a good way, see the song “Weekend Warrior” to understand). Let down doesn’t even describe how I feel about that record. What a fucking turd.
- Led Zepplin: So these guys never “officially” reformed for anything other than other than a handful of one-off or benefit shows. And that’s a good thing. Even though I’m too young to ever know Zepp before Bonzo (aka, the best rock drummer ever) died, I am familiar with the lore that surrounded their live performances. From everything I’ve read (and seen) they are one of the best live acts……ever. That is until they got back together in the 80’s for a couple of one-off and charity gigs. Those shows were pretty awful, something even the band recognizes. I mean seriously guys, fucking Phil Collins on the drums????? (Quick side note. Zepp got together again in 2007 and played a great show. The performance, titled Celebration Day, was just released on DVD and it’s awesome). Smartest thing these guys have ever done is to never fully reunite, in spite of how fucking cool that could be.
- Stone Temple Pilots: Jesus Christ, I don’t even know where to start with this one. If you grew up in the 90’s and were even remotely into rock music, you probably liked if not loved STP. And what was there not to love? These guys had it all. A great singer, killer guitar riffs (ex: “Heaven & Hot Rods” from No. 4) and most importantly they wrote catchy and ballsy songs. Then, in 2008 after collectively fucking around for the better part of the previous six years, STP announced they were reuniting. Awesome right?!? Wrong. The new album that they released didn’t even sound like STP. In the few years since the release of that album, I’ve still only listened to it one time. Bummer.
- New Kids On The Block, The Spice Girls, Backstreet Boys: Really??? Fuck off already.
I could go on and on. Who knows, maybe I’m a purist? An elitist? Too nostalgic??? The point is, that for me, reunions usually end up messy. An affair of musicians that I once loved and respected turns ugly and for the most part, really embarrassing. The past history I’ve experienced with reunions certainly gives me reason to hesitate. I should at least question it……..right?
Surely though, Trent is different than some of the aforementioned acts. He couldn’t possibly let me down…..Him and Nine Inch Nails are better than that……..I hope. I’ve got years of fanboy adoration, not to mention a shitload of money earmarked for tickets to at least a few shows riding on this reunion. So Trent (or anyone else that could be in NIN), if you ever run across this article, please know that bands have let me down in the past when they reunite. But you? You guys could break my heart.
Leave me a comment below about how you feel about Nine Inch Nails getting back together? Are you excited about the idea of new music and a new tour? What bands that you like have reunited and done a good job? How bout bad?
You can also connect with Gutter Bubbles on Facebook and Twitter!