It’s been a while since Nine Inch Nails, everyone’s favourite gateway band into industrial metal, has released anything of note (2014’s remix EP ‘Seed Eight’ sure as shit doesn’t count as a release in my books). It’s not surprising. After all, Oscar-Winning frontman Trent Reznor has been providing scores for The Social Network, Gone Girl, Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – basically anything by David Fincher.
It seems that Reznor‘s brainchild NIN has taken a backseat for a while. A mere glance at the band’s official website will see you find posters for a bunch of pretentious documentaries that Reznor is providing/has provided synths for. This theory is backed up further by simply listening to NIN‘s latest EP, ‘Not The Actual Events’.
Opening with ‘Branches/Bones’, a raw, bass-drenched throwback to 90s NIN before the all too polished ear of ‘With Teeth’, you’ll instantly scream “YES! More of this! Where have you been guys!?” It’s a triumphant example of why we fell in love with NIN in the first place, and exactly what we’ve been waiting for. But, this visceral euphoria is cut short after a mere 105 seconds, and is instead replaced with the inane, trancy, flaccid nothingness of ‘Dear World’, which ironically and hilariously opens and ends with “Yes, everyone seems to be asleep.” Y’know why, Trent? Because they were listening to this bullshit and slipped into a coma.
The rest of the EP is follows the same, dull, plodding sound that’s as long as it is boring. To be fair, ‘The Idea Of You’ has some furious moments that immerge from the deep, like a killer whale leaping above ocean surface, appearing for a brief moment of awe and wonder before crashing back in the abyss of self-indulgent sludge.
Musical guru Stephen Sondheim once said “Where words fail, music should being”, but, in the case of this review, “When words fail, a Peep Show reference will do.” So, here’s Jeremy “Jez” Usbourne perfectly describing this EP:
Written by Andy Roberts (@sassensquatch)
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Atheist and antitheist. | Judge of the quick & the dead since 1989.