- by paul_guyet Rating: Release Date: Label:
Back in May, when tickets for Nine Inch Nails’ Cold And Black And Infinite tour went on sale only at the box offices of the venues where the handful of shows were being held, there was a poster for sale listing the locations of this so-called “Physical World” pre-sale event. Last month, once the tour had started, there was a different poster available at the shows. When the two posters were laid next to one another, it completed a larger image; it turned out each poster was only half of the full picture.
The second night of Nine Inch Nails at Radio City Music Hall was that second half. Between the two shows, only three songs were repeated, all the rest were unique to that evening’s performance. And, like the first night, Trent Reznor did not seem to give the slightest of fucks about the more radio friendly audience members.
While the first night included two thirds of their latest release, Bad Witch, and half of the release before that, as well as some never-before-played* songs such as “All The Love In The World” from With Teeth and “The Perfect Drug” from 1997’s Lost Highway soundtrack, this second evening focused more on The Fragile (the beginning of the show was the first four tracks of that album in sequence), The Downward Spiral (including a blistering rendition of “The Becoming”), and Year Zero. The chaotic ending of “The Great Destroyer” has been retooled to include garbled bits of the current American president's already garbled voice, adding a real chill and sense of impending doom to the performance. As before, there was a handful of unique moments, namely the reappearance of “La Mer” which hasn’t been played in full, in almost a decade, a rare and heartfelt cover of Bowie’s “I Can’t Give Everything Away”, and a transition from “Help Me I Am In Hell” to the explosive and obliterating “Happiness In Slavery”, which hasn’t been played live in almost 25 years.
“This is a weird set, huh?” asked Reznor at one point. “Well, it just felt right”.
No complaints here, Trent. None.
Nine Inch Nails played two more nights in New York at Brooklyn's Kings Theatre.
And I was there.
* Never before this tour.