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Nine Inch Nails - Ghosts I-IV CD (album) cover


Nine Inch Nails

Crossover Prog

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5 stars This is i big step away from the former releases of NIN, Reznor is now exploring a more experimental music, that you would normaly find on recordings by ambient composers or musicians more interested in experimental recording than in Rock itself. You still find elements of Industrial, but its mixed up in a way more meditative manner. Cant help to wonder to what extend Reznor was inspired by "My Life in the Bush of Ghosts" ?. Similarity is there for sure, but still its not that close. This is a recording very well suited for closed eyes / lying down. Where the "noise" from most previus NIN Outputs was intended to be stressfull and maby even to some extend anoying, here it creates a beautiful but dark sound landscape, for the most parts relaxing, but still colorfull and full of variety. Seen from a progrock view, a masterpiece, can imagine though, that many Industrial Rock fanboys, would be very disapointed. Adrian Belew ad a lot of Guitar effects on the album, making it even more of a Prog. must-have. I find this the best instrumental expreimental prog album i'we listen'ed too for quite a while, and at the same time it is fresh aproach at the genre, with some very heavy sounds mixed in, some upbeat tracks, some relaxed piano pieces, some "asian" inputs, some elements of Psychedelic ( or rather Psycodelic), some techno vibes, not to mention great guitar preformance from Adrian Belew and NIN's italian guitarist Alessandro Cortini. Cant help myself, this needs 5 stars, its beautiful, its interesting, its strong. May not be prog in the most narrow meaning of the word, but if you view it up against a genre like PROGRESSIVE ELECTRONIC, it just hits the Nail perfectly. Seems to me I find a development in the cruelness of those spirits of the deceased, even though not all linar. Anyway the ghosts, though sometimes pretty ugly, are not nearly as scary as you might fear from NIN. This is a long album, but its not a problem, every track would be missed if not there. Everything ads to the full picture. If 110 min. is to much at once, its naturaly split in 4 smaller pieces, as the title might suggest. Each kvarter a unit in itself.
Report this review (#276592)
Posted Tuesday, April 6, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Possibly my favourite Nine Inch Nails release, Ghosts I-IV finds Trent Reznor fully indulging a side of his music which had only surfaced as very occasional instrumental snippets on previous albums (aside from the Quake soundtrack). This fully instrumental ambient industrial album is essentially Reznor's answer to Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Vol. II, immersed as it is in an experimental tradition which can be traced back by the attentive listener to the electronic delvings of Brian Eno and Robert Fripp back in the 1970s. (Fripp sideman Adrian Belew even appears on some tracks.) All the sonic genius of Reznor with none of the embarrassingly bad lyrics or insincere stabs at the mainstream? Yes, please!
Report this review (#729088)
Posted Sunday, April 15, 2012 | Review Permalink

This is to date, TRENT REZOR's strongest prog-related release with 36 incredible, chilling and mesmerizing instrumental tracks. GHOSTS is a dual disc album that is an essential example of how dark gothic, industrial electronic soundscapes can make its way into the 'progressive' category of music. I highly recommend this album to listeners who really appreciate dark-ambient electronic music. Fans of TANGERINE DREAM's RICOCHET will highly identify with this album because of its dark and moody feel. 

Meanwhile, this is an essential prog album because of the category it is under and being an industrial synth, computer generated masterpiece that it is it shall be respected as the best prog example for this kind of music. Enjoy my fellow proggers. GHOSTS is a real treat and a good find. REZNOR collaborated with ATTICUS ROSS on this record and some songs where featured on the motion picture soundtrack for THE SOCIAL NETWORK, which earned REZNOR And ROSS an OSCAR award! High praise indeed, but well deserved. GHOSTS, I believe, can appeal to generations both young and old. 

Turn the lights off and crank this double album through the best pair of Headphones you got. You won't be sorry.

Report this review (#884054)
Posted Saturday, December 29, 2012 | Review Permalink
Eclectic Team
5 stars What kind of album do you expect to have when Nine Inch Nails releases a double album of all instrumental music? Is it going to all be like soft new age music? Is it going to be experimental? Is it going to be loud and noisy? Well, I wasn't sure what to expect, but with Trent Reznor's work with soundtracks, I kind of expected mostly soft, atmospheric music not unlike new age style music. Well, you do get some atmospheric beauty here. But you get so much more than that too. There is some harsh music, some industrial sounding music, some electronic, some experimental music....really there is a lot of everything here, and it is all some of the best and most progressive music ever put out by Nine Inch Nails.

Reznor's contract with the music labels had ended and he finally had the freedom to do the type of album he had been dreaming about for a long time. The music is still surprisingly very NINs-like and there are times when you know who you are listening to. But, in most cases, the music is so much more deeper than this. And you never know what's coming next. Beautiful soundscapes with a lot of the slightly muted piano, piano that sounds like the brightness has been toned down and there is that slight feel of uneasiness, even in the most relaxing tracks.

Other times, you get jolts of tense textures, very often similar to other NINs music, sometimes repetitive as you would expect from industrial music, and other times very innovative and experimental. I did not expect this much variety from this album, and that is a very pleasant surprise that so many styles and sounds are explored here. Sometimes keyboards take the lead and other times guitar leads the soundscapes, helped along many times by none other than King Crimson frontman Adrian Belew, who at times even brings echoes of the ProjeKcts. Other times you get the experimental electronic sounds that echo the sounds of Eno or other greats. Many times the music is simple and beautiful, other times it is complex or harsh.

Those who really explored this music discovered that there were pictures that accompany the tracks here. Many of these pictures were what inspired the sounds of these tracks and they are available at the NIN wiki site with a track by track description of the music for those who are interested. It doesn't really do any service to you however for me to analyze and evaluate the music on a track by track basis here, because there is so much going on here that is beyond words. Just know that this is an amazing collection of inspiration and art. This album is also the reason why NIN belongs in the Archives. This is definitely a masterpiece of instrumental neo-prog and is an essential work for those who are not satisfied with only listening to progressive music of the past. 5 stars.

Report this review (#1394557)
Posted Sunday, April 5, 2015 | Review Permalink

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