40’s Insights – The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of Niggy Tardust

Preconceived Notions: I know who Trent Reznor is, I respect him- a little, I don’t think he’s a god like some.  Never heard of Saul Williams, still industrial hip-hop sounds interesting at least.

After Listening: Oh blissful ignorance, how I miss thee.  The good stuff:  well some of the arrangements are interesting, the interplay between say sampled guitar or keys and the beats.  From a purely technical standpoint the actual audio mix is solid….but then again when you’re talking about the mix 2 sentences into a review you know you’re grasping at straws.  To put it simply, I can’t stand the guy’s voice…in places it sounds under like a fake distress when the pace of the lyrics wouldn’t necessitate it, in other places it has almost a thin whiny tone you might associate with a band of a different genre like TV on the Radio or something…in almost every case it’s annoying to me.  The music in most places is flat out boring…most of this album sounds like stuff that wasn’t good enough to be on a NIN album. I mean there is room for variation in industrial music, and yet every backing tone is one that you could find identical or near identical to a NIN song. It’s likeTrentjust took his top 20 favorite samples and put them into the rotation. The lyrical content is average, but even good points are obscured amid the feelings the music and vocal tone generate.

Favorite Tracks:  “Sunday Bloody Sunday” – It’s simply the best of a bad lot, and I’m guessing that has a lot to do with it not being an original.  Still it’s not an offensive version.

Least Favorite Tracks:  “Raw” – Sounds like a rough cut version of NIN’s “Closer” only with far less emotion and interest-and no breaking into a heavier chorus.  The ending of this thing, was almost my breaking point. I like atonal moaning as much as the next dude (I would say even moreso), but here it served no purpose other than to extend an already pointless track.

“No one ever Does” – Seriously? Lyrical fail.  I feel like I’m listening to a 12 year old tell me about his week.  Damn the meter on this is short, and yet still it’s repetitive and grating.

Overall 2.2  It’s like an entire album of buildup with no reward. At its best it sounds like bootlegged NIN and I’m not looking for that b/c I love them- I don’t.  There are just way more diverse things one can accomplish with industrial music….but this isTrentby the numbers.  Add to that the vocal elements which are underwhelming and well you don’t have much.  Kudos to the process of collaboration, but this one was either not finished when it came out-or needed to be scrapped all together.

40 (45 Posts)

40 has had training enough in classical theory to know roughly what he's talking about. As for talent, he considers himself a crappy guitar player. He has a BA in Audio & Sound Recording BA, so not only does music creation intrigue him, but also music production. He believes that expression takes all forms, and it has to be remembered that music is an art form and is ultimately about connection, communication, experimentation, creativity, freedom, emotion, and 100’s of other things.


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