Nine Inch Nails: Tension, an expanded Blu-ray/DVD/digital release, is coming in Spring 2014 with tons of extra content, 5.1 surround sound, and more. Sign up at nin.com/tension to be notified as soon as pre-orders go live.
I’m excited that we were able to get this show documented and that we can put it out for everyone to see. It puts a great bookend on an amazing tour. I’m more excited for the Blu-ray release though - I spent last week sitting with the editor of this Vevo cut, finessing it and making tweaks and doing color corrections, and there’s a lot of detail that gets lost here but will really shine on Blu-ray. Plus there are some great production moments from the show which aren’t in this cut, but will be on the final release. We’ll have details and pre-orders on all that stuff soon, we’re still getting the specifics worked out. For now, set this to full screen 1080p with the sound cranked, and enjoy.
For over two years, alongside a small group of awesome, passionate, brilliant music fans, I’ve been deeply involved in the creation of Beats Music, a new curated music streaming service. We’ve had so many ups and downs as the project has evolved, so many setbacks and frustrations, there were times I wasn’t sure it would ever see the light of day.
But our scrappy room of enthusiastic creators back in 2011 (Trent Reznor, Fredric Vinna, Brian Frank, Jens Jonason, Scott Plagenhoef, and myself, with the corporate guidance of Jimmy Iovine and Luke Wood) eventually gained the power of MOG's team, the masterful design input of R/GA, followed by many new recruits and the leadership of CEO Ian Rogers, and we were finally able to start executing and expanding some of the many ideas we were once merely scribbling on a whiteboard.
Now, Beats Music is finally launching in January. It’s only the beginning of what we have in store, but I’m beyond excited to finally get it in peoples’ hands and show the world what we think a music subscription service can be. Claim your username now and stay tuned.
Here’s a quote from me about Trent’s role in the product, from today’s FADER post about the January launch:
Trent’s experience with creating Nine Inch Nails, not just as a band but also as a brand, as an experience, as a culture, and his business savvy, makes him very adaptable into other situations that require creativity with an understanding of branding and perception and user experience. Jimmy [Iovine] has a tremendous amount of respect for Trent. But when Jimmy initially brought Trent on board at Beats, he was looking at him just as a producer and an audio guy. Saying, “Trent why don’t you come in and check out what we’re doing in here and take a look at some headphones and see how you would improve the sound.” It was by chance then that Jimmy mentioned this other Beats project, this streaming music service. That was something Trent was really interested in, problem solving as it pertains to the music industry and business models. Trent and I have spent a lot of time talking about that previously, so he brought me along and we ended up going in there and turning the whole project upside down with our ideas. Since then, Trent has continued to hold this very high creative role in Beats Music. It’s been interesting to take everything we’ve learned from our experience bringing Nine Inch Nails out into the world, our thinking about what fans want, and apply that to this new situation.
Once again, Vevo filmed the arduous process of developing a Nine Inch Nails tour, and has put together another great behind-the-scenes feature. Here you’ll see me at my most tired/stressed/insane, struggling to wrap my head around the ever-changing identity of the most unique and difficult tour we’ve ever assembled.
These features are interesting (and sometimes hard for me to watch) because they’re very honest. There’s no makeup, no interview prepping, no re-shoots, these guys were in our faces while we were trying to work, catching us off guard and capturing moments that we sometimes would prefer not be filmed. We didn’t script or plan these features, these guys were annoying the hell out of us during production rehearsals - but in the end it’s nice to have a document, however personally uncomfortable, of the work we put into something like this.
Tomorrow we’re unveiling a 90 minute video of the show, filmed in LA, available to watch for free on Vevo. This was filmed and produced by the same team who did the How To Destroy Angels Coachella webcast and the NIN Lollapalooza/Outside Lands webcasts. I’m immensely proud of what we (eventually) achieved and I’m excited to have it presented professionally for the world to see.
If you missed the first part of Vevo's behind-the-scenes NIN series (focusing on our summer 2013 festival tour), check it out here.
If you’ve never seen it, treat yourself to the 1987 “Max Headroom” TV pirating incident, where a pirate signal of a man in a Max Headroom mask making nonsensical rants briefly interrupted a Chicago TV broadcast. It is phenomenally creepy, and to this day no one knows who did it. Vice has a great long read that digs into all the details and the theories surrounding the incident.
Just a small taste of the Nine Inch Nails: Tension 2013 tour production I’ve been heavily involved with for the past few months. Creative credit for this production is shared with Trent Reznor, Roy Bennett, Paul Guthrie, Moment Factory, Brian Jenkins, Jason Baeri, Andrew Jerez, Loren Barton, and Morgan Brown, among others - and of course the massive and amazing crew that makes it actually happen every night.