Trent Reznor has made releasing exclusive, professionally shot concert footage online something of a personal holiday tradition. Last year he gave us several clips from Nine Inch Nails’ summer 2009 tour, and the year before he was generous enough to “leak” an entire concert’s worth of raw HD footage from his Lights in the Sky tour to be edited by talented fans. This year the tech-savvy frontman shared two beautifully filmed performances from NIN’s Wave Goodbye tour, also from the summer of 2009 —which were possibly the last concerts of his band’s career.
The first clip, uploaded on Christmas Eve, is an intense rendition of “Somewhat Damaged,” the opening track from NIN’s 1999 double-cd set The Fragile, recorded live at the Bowery Ballroom in New York City on August 22, 2009. It was already one of Reznor’s most aggressive numbers, but this take is especially brutal, and it’s obvious how much the band was relishing the opportunity to rock hard in venue far more intimate than their usual arena dates.
The second video, which went live on New Year’s Eve, is a special performance of the instrumental “Just Like You Imagined” filmed at the Henry Fonda Theater in Los Angeles on September 9, 2009 — the band’s penultimate concert. For this song, also from the Fragile, the band was joined by longtime David Bowie sideman Mike Garson. At the start of the video, Reznor mentions that he met Garson while on tour with Bowie in the mid-’90s, and declared that the pianist “the most inspiring musician I’ve ever come across.” Given the caliber of musicians Reznor has worked with over the past two decades, that is some high praise indeed.
Watch Video From Nine Inch Nails’ Farewell Tour [Pitchfork]