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Nine Inch Nails

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Nine Inch Nails Ghosts V: Together album cover
4.14 | 19 ratings | 3 reviews | 16% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2020

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Letting Go While Holding On (9:39)
2. Together (10:04)
3. Out in the Open (5:16)
4. With Faith (9:41)
5. Apart (13:36)
6. Your Touch (4:28)
7. Hope We Can Again (7:27)
8. Still Right Here (10:12)

Total Time 70:23

Line-up / Musicians

- Instrumentation could not be verified at this time. If you have information, please contact the site.

Releases information

Free download.

Thanks to tupan for the addition
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NINE INCH NAILS Ghosts V: Together ratings distribution

(19 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(16%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(42%)
Good, but non-essential (21%)
Collectors/fans only (16%)
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)

NINE INCH NAILS Ghosts V: Together reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars In 2008, Nine Inch Nails (Trent Reznor) released an all instrumental album that also hinted at some experimentation, and named it "Ghosts I-IV". This very intriguing record showed the creative side of Reznor that we all knew was there, but was often buried under heavy industrial rock, not that was always such a bad thing. This new direction for NIN came somewhat as a surprise and also merited NIN's inclusion in ProgArchives. After this album, NIN returned to the basic sound that was prevalent previously, but it was a bit more accessible and slanted to a less noisy style. Then, in 2020, Reznor surprised everyone again by producing two albums that carry on the experimental style of the previous Ghosts album. These were albums released and recorded while the world was mostly in isolation because of COVID and were offered for free streaming.

The first of these two albums is "Ghosts V: Together". This album differs from the first Ghosts album in that most of the tracks are much, much longer. This time, you have 8 tracks that span a total of around 70 minutes, so most of these songs are quite long. As a result of this, the individual tracks are much better developed which was the main thing missing from the original Ghosts series. The tracks are also named and work better as individual ideas. This is all made cohesive by keeping the style on this album quite ambient, usually muted melodies and drone foundations that are also manipulated to create some interesting mental pictures. The music is both dark and hopeful, though a bit cautionary. It also features some nice melodies that are kept somewhat muted.

Letting Go While Holding On - Airy drones surrounded by a slow and mysterious, somewhat stifled melody. Drones continue for a while before a descending cadence plays. Background gets a bit more intense as this cadence continues and then calms.

Together - Subdued piano plays quietly with multi-layered background softly acting as a foundation creating a feeling that the music is playing far away being carried by ebbing breezes through the air. The last few minutes turn quite dreamy as the "winds" die down and the muted piano comes back to the foreground.

Out in the Open - Movement is more prevalent as the dreamy background cycles through a chord sequence. Soon, high bell-like notes join in providing a quasi-melody the repeats while variations of the sequence continue.

With Faith - Low register vocal effects give the feeling of a breathing choir while a percussive tonal instrument provides what seems to be an improvised line based around a simple melody. There is some build as it continues along creating a feeling of warmth, soothing, yet a little unnerving at the same time.

Apart - Dark drones ebb and flow while a lovely melody played by treated piano plays slowly evoking emotions of solitude, distance and melancholy. Later, droning and atmospheric synths keep things moving forward, but also keep things dark and dangerous. The last few minutes become a bit more hopeful as twinkling synths bring a bit of brightness to the song, however, the dark drone stays tucked away far into the background.

Your Touch - Glitchy tones and sounds join the piano/synth combination.

Hope We Can Again - Smooth bassline and twinkling melody provide a contrast that evokes more hope, but the slow tempo makes the hope cautionary.

Still Right Here - Very ambient, yet softly moving forward. Sudden change of pace after 4 minutes in as a steady, upbeat tempo suddenly comes in. This acts as a bridge to "Ghosts Volume VI" and is a bit more indicative of the industrial vibe that NIN usually produces. This continues for a while, then suddenly the beat stops as dark and glitchy sounds and noises take over creating the most uneasy feeling of the album. Things calm down to the ambient feeling again evoking a sense of never ending solitude.

There is a nice sense of warmness to most of this album that has been absent on most of NIN's previous releases, and even with the sense of the isolation being eternal, there are several passages that evoke hopefulness. The music is very sensitive and even quite healing. With the album being around 70 minutes, some might argue that it is a bit long, however, it seems like the tracks just fly by if you really get lost in them. All in all, it is a lovely and emotional album that evokes the feelings that many in the world feel during the pandemic of 2020. But the album also offers hope which gives it a brightness in some sections that keeps it from being a total downer. The development of each track shows how Reznor's writing has become more mature and helps us cut through the noise and experience his brilliance in composition.

Review by Dapper~Blueberries
5 stars To be honest this listen took way longer than it should've, but that's neither here nor there. Nine Inch Nails, a band I am guessing needs no introduction. Industrial rock band slowly became a lot more experimental, and is led by Trent Reznor. I won't say I am a huge fan, but I do really enjoy their music and I really appreciate what they've done for music and for culture as a whole. I have listened to their entire discography, except for this album. This album has been an illusion for me. I always intend to listen to this but I never found the right opportunity or mood for it. I knew what it was about since I've already heard its companion album Ghosts VI: Locusts, but I didn't know what I'd think about it fully. That changes today, and I'll review whatever this album brings.

It starts with Letting Go While Holding On. This is a very elegant and droning track with a slightly muddy backing harmony in the back. This song brings me both comfort and a strange feeling of worry. This song feels very much like it is in the uncanny valley, where I feel like I am safe while hearing it, but I also feel like I am being watched, and the more I realize the thing that feels off with the song, the more I really start to see the big picture. Trent Reznor knows how to make someone feel ways they never felt before with songs, and no matter if it's loud and hard industrial sounds with Closer or this more quiet, and delicate piece, he has a knack for this sort of thing which I always appreciated. It's uncomfortable in the best way possible.

Next is the pseudo title track of the album, Together. This is also a droning melody, however with a much more clear harmony for a lead. Right off the bat all those uncomfortable emotions from the last song washes away, but are replaced with a feeling of sadness? Melancholy? Loneliness? I cannot tell honestly but I do feel something along those lines. The more the song goes on, the more it feels like it is drowning in bitter sorrow. It almost hurts to listen to. Strangely this sound and style reminds me of some of the music in Silent Hill, mostly the piano pieces where they express moods of uncomfortableness and or sadness to really heighten the fear, emotions, or messages the characters face in their terrifying journey through a desolate town. It's that sort of feeling that doesn't disappoint when done right, and here it definitely doesn't falter whatsoever.

Right up next is Out In The Open. The uncomfortability washes over again but stronger this time. While shorter than the first track, this one lets itself be known as a strong and very worrying drone piece that makes me feel very tense for some reason. It's that emotion and feeling thing I said before that makes you have a sudden feeling of negativity without knowing why, whether it be fear or sadness. I know I am safe, but this song makes me feel otherwise. It's strangely heavy, and I love it a lot.

Afterwards it is With Faith. This song is scary for all the right reasons I said before. Leading with very strange and repetitive hymns with a weird and disorganized melody in the back, I feel strangely anxious, and I guess that is the theme with the album, strangely anxious. On one hand I am feeling safe and secure, but on the other I am looking around in case there is something that I might be missing, or something that might resolve all this tension even when there is none. I don't know what to fear more, the music, or Trent's ability to make this music, but either way I do find a strange love and passion to be brimming in this release, and I cannot deny that already it is shaping itself to be one of my favorite Nine Inch Nails album. Good work so far, hope it still leads into more and more great sounds.

Next in the wake is Apart. Wow, even after that scary track of With Faith, Trent really is cranking the same terrifying vibes in this one, and making it the longest song on the album, being 13+ minutes, doesn't help. I do admit at this point I do feel like I am sensing a pattern, a droney piece that is relatively long with a backing melody that evokes fear with each song getting a little more uncomfortable or hurtful. However I see this less of an issue and more of a flex on Trent's craftsmanship. Where some artists pale in creating a cohesive ambient album with a core structure, Nine Inch Nails, despite being the Da Vinci of heavy alt 90s rock, still comes out on top as even masters of drone music. It's strange but welcoming, and I think that is a perfect descriptor for this piece of music.

After all is said and done, we get into Your Touch. While being the shortest, it still effortlessly pulls out the strangeness the last songs have, but I feel no fear, rather an melancholic source that I had no idea was there. It hurts, it sounds like a melody trying to free itself, but in doing so deforms what it holds so dear, and that'd be its harmony, so it becomes a mess of beeps and boops. I cannot believe it, but I find myself feeling pity for this album, even when it isn't breathing. It's magical to say the least.

At this point it's best to keep going, and Hope We Can Again seems to take the melancholy of the previous track and reshape it back into uncomfortableness. Not all that pity is reshaped to a feeling of dread, a looming presence that only gets stronger with time. It spends my mind so it releases chemicals that make me feel nervous and dreadful, however strangely in a therapeutic sense. It's like facing your worst fears, and while scared by them, you go through them without an issue, leaving better and better, but still remembering what happened long before. And man, that middle part where all the melodies wash away and a high pitched ringing starts to play with ghastly synths in the back creating a scary sounding noise just brings me to such a state of mind that feels relaxing in its terror. I flat out love this track man.

And now we get into the last song, Still Right Here. I never really looked at the lyrics until now and I realized that this album seems to have a layer of grief, which definitely works for the feelings I sense with this album. This is probably the saddest, and most hurtful song on this album. It's almost like the album finally realizes it'll have to end soon, and so plays whatever it has left, a scornful and bitter melody with a ton of drones and harmonies. Heck the drone sounds like an ambulance siren, like the album is being rushed to a hospital on life support. The fact Trent Reznor perfectly made an album feel alive is just mind blowing. However the album does give one last thing that we haven't heard before, a guitar melody, showcasing the band's industrial side of things, almost like this piece is proudly showing what it truly is, a Nine Inch Nails song, as it switches gears to a beat driven song filled with weird and disorganized beeps and boops as that same guitar quietly plays in the back. Even in its final minutes, the album fully realizes what it is, at least for a few seconds, until it is stopped and leads back into those uncomfortable drones. If anything it just makes me feel even more pained by Trent's abilities, and I cannot deny that this album and how it feels are definitely the strongest I've ever seen in any electronic music album ever. I hope we get more like this cause it's glorious.

This album is such a banger, and one I hope for all that it is worth, gets appreciated as one of Nine Inch Nails' best projects. The band has evolved to the point where industrial rock is behind them and they can fully go wherever they choose and how they see fit. I'd say this is a masterpiece and should absolutely be listened to if you love Nine Inch Nails and Trent Reznor's other works.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Ghosts V: together was released during the chaos of the pandemic, with a download available on the official Nine inch nails website. The album is a follow up to the Ghosts I-IV album that was released back in 2008. Ghosts V: Together is an ambient album similar to Ghosts I-IV, and the album is beaut ... (read more)

Report this review (#2450683) | Posted by progtime1234567 | Thursday, September 24, 2020 | Review Permanlink

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