If Trent Reznor surprised fans when he announced recently that he had secretly been working on Nine Inch Nails' impending album Hesitation Marks (out September 3rd), they weren't the only ones: the new LP came as a surprise to Reznor, too, he told L.A. radio station KROQ, as reported by Radio.com.
What started as a couple of tracks for a greatest hits collection he owed his old label, Interscope Records, soon snowballed into enough cuts for an album. Reznor said he "was seizing the moment of inspiration," though at the time wasn't sure if he would even release the songs.
Eventually, Reznor signed with Columbia Records (which released the LP from his side project How to Destroy Angels) and put out "Came Back Haunted," the first single from Hesitation Marks, a few weeks back. The singer said he will likely release a video for the song, directed by David Lynch, by the end of this week.
Reznor has also pieced together a completely new touring lineup for Nine Inch Nails – though that group has already seen a few shakeups. Following the departure of bassist Eric Avery, King Crimson guitarist Adrian Belew (who does appear on Hesitation Marks) also bowed out.
Reznor said the lineup changes have been "disruptive," adding, "you can spend a lot of time hypothesizing, imagining and projecting what it's gonna be with this chemistry and this recipe of people in a room playing music, and in reality it rarely is that."
Still, Reznor's confident in the band he's set to tour with this fall: "It's felt like a wrench in the works at times, but at the same time it's made me rethink a lot of how we put this together, and I think where we're ending up at is a place that's much truer to what Nine Inch Nails should be . . . and better in the long run."
Reznor also divulged a bit about the stage setup for NIN's upcoming live dates – some festivals this summer, and a massive tour this fall – comparing it to 2008's "very video heavy" Lights in the Sky tour. "I've always enjoyed the idea of presenting the band in an interesting way and paying attention to the production and stage design," Reznor said. "It frames the music. And if you're paying to come see a show, I think you should be taken to a different place. It should be an experience not just for your ears, but it envelopes you."
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