10 things we learned from Trent Reznor’s Times interview on Nine Inch Nails

07.25.13 4 years ago 8 Comments

Rob Sheridan

Trent Reznor sounds very Trent Reznor in the latest profile of him and his band Nine Inch Nails. The New York Times features some in-depth talk about the group’s festival outing, their tour plans, their recording process for “Hesitation Marks” and some personal details on 48-year-old Reznor’s mid-life.

Here are 10 things that stood out to us in the reading of the article, penned by the excellent Jon Pareles. Follow me down the spiral…

1. For the band’s 14 festival dates (including Made In America, Lollapalooza and Outside Lands), there will be “a few new songs” from “Hesitation Marks” to be previewed before that album’s Sept. 3 drop date.

2. “Hesitation Marks” is described as “electronic,” veering toward “pointillistic,” revealing “its anxieties and longings more subtly than much of the Nine Inch Nails catalog.”

3. This upcoming festival run features a full choreography of lights and videos screens, to be pushed around the stage by NIN’s crew. And they plan an “entirely different production” for the group’s late 2013/early 2014 arena tour.

4. Reznor “freely admits” to borrowing from Talking Heads’ 1983 tour, which was filmed for acclaimed concert doc “Stop Making Sense.” Reznor will start out alone, then his band gradually collects onto the stage. In no coincidence, Reznor tapped (now-departed touring bandmate) Adrian Belew for studio recordings, and Belew played on “Stop Making Sense.”

5. Nine Inch Nails went on hiatus from touring in 2009 because, “I felt kind of burned out,” Reznor said. “I felt tired of the format. It was starting to feel stale to me.”

6. “The Downward Spiral” was definitely on his mind as he worked on “Hesitation Marks.” “I felt very aware that it”s 20 years later, and I”m still that guy. I know that guy, and I feel for him. I don”t resent him, I don”t miss him. But how would things feel on the other side of that now, in a much more stable life place, mentally and physically, and with a new family? The incentive has changed. It”s not about, ‘I”m going to kill myself if I don”t get this out of my head.” But the excavation and the architecture behind it, the motivation behind it, is similar.”

7. Reznor started work on “Hesitation Marks” on his laptop, “using it largely as a drum machine and coming up with austere, brittle, sneakily evolving grooves.”

8. “I don”t really even raise my voice on this album that much,” Reznor said. “The mechanism of screaming choruses doesn”t exist here. And that wasn”t by design.”

9. Reznor’s kids with wife Mariqueen Maandig are named Lazarus and Balthazar. They’re going to be on tour with him. His room backstage even has cribs in it.

10. Lindsey Buckingham and Reznor collaborated for only one day in the studio, though the Fleetwood Mac guitarist will be featured on three songs. “[Reznor’s] process was something like a painting process like I work, where you”re slopping colors around and looking for clues, and it becomes a subconscious process in which the work reveals itself to you,” Buckingham said.

What sticks out to you in the interview?

Watch NIN’s “Came Back Haunted” music video, directed by David Lynch.

Here are Nine Inch Nails’ tour dates:

07/26 – Niigata, Japan @ Fuji Rocks Festival
07/28 – Ansan, South Korea @ Ansan Valley Festival
08/2-4 – Chicago, IL @ Lollapalooza
08/9-11 – San Francisco, CA @ Outside Lands
08/15 – Hasselt, Belgium @ Pukkelpop
08/16 – Biddinghuizen, Holland @ Lowlands Festival
08/18 – Hockenheim, Germany @ Rock ‘n’ Heim
08/21 – Belfast, Northern Ireland @ Belsonic Festival
08/23 – Leeds, England @ Leeds Festival
08/24 – Paris, France @ Rock en Seine
08/25 – Reading, England @ Reading Festival
08/28 – Milan, Italy @ Mediolanum Forum
08/31 – 09/1 – Philadelphia, PA @ Made in America Festival
09/28 – St. Paul, MN @ Xcel Energy Center
09/30 – Kansas City, MO @ Sprint Center
10/01 – St. Louis, MO @ Chaifetz Arena
10/03 – Montreal, QC @ Centre Bell
10/04 – Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre
10/05 – Cleveland, OH @ Wolstein Center
10/07 – Auburn Hill, MI @ The Palace of Auburn Hills
10/08 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Petersen Events Center
10/11 – Boston, MA @ TD Garden
10/14 – Brooklyn, NY @ Barclays Center
10/15 – Newark, NJ @ Prudential Center
10/18 – Washington, D.C. @ Verizon Center
10/19 – University Park, PA @ Bryce Jordan Center
10/21 – Raleigh, NC @ PNC Arena
10/22 – Nashville, TN @ Bridgestone Arena
10/24 – Atlanta, GA @ Philips Arena
10/25-27 – Asheville, NC @ Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit
10/30 – Sunrise, FL @ BB&T Center
10/31 – Orlando, FL @ Amway Center
11/1-3 – New Orleans, LA @ Voodoo Music Experience
11/05 – San Antonio, TX @ AT&T Center
11/08 – Los Angeles, CA @ Staples Center
11/09 – Phoenix, AZ @ US Airways Center
11/11 – El Paso, TX @ Don Haskins Center
11/13 – Broomfield, CO @ 1st Bank Center
11/15 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint
11/16 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint
11/18 – Portland, OR @ Rose Garden Arena
11/19 – Spokane, WA @ Spokane Arena
11/21 – Vancouver, British Columbia @ Rogers Arena
11/22 – Seattle, WA @ KeyArena
11/24 – Edmonton, AB @ Rexall Place
11/25 – Calgary, AB @ Scotiabank Saddledome

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