nine inch nails: the fragile [halo 14]: official tracklisting
disc one: disc two:
1. somewhat damaged (4:33) 1. the way out is through... (4:19)
2. the day the world went away (4:33) 2. into the void (4:49)
3. the frail (1:54) 3. where is everybody? (5:13)
4. the wretched (5:25) 4. the mark has been made (5:11)
5. we're in this together (7:16) 5. please (4:01)
6. the fragile (4:35) 6. starfuckers, inc. (5:00)
7. just like you imagined (3:49) 7. complication (2:30)
8. even deeper (5:47) 8. i'm looking forward to joining you, finally (4:13)
9. pilgrimage (3:31) 9. the big come down (4:12)
10. no, you don't (3:35) 10. underneath it all (2:46)
11. la mer (4:37) 11. ripe (with decay) (6:34) 
12. the great below (5:17)
Total tracks: 23
Total time: 1:44:04
september twenty-first, nineteen hundred and ninety-nine.

some notes on this tracklisting:
early rumors of one disc being instrumental and the other having lyrics have been pretty much dismissed. already known vocal tracks like “the day the world went away” and “starfuckers, inc.” are on separate discs, thereby dismissing the theory. it would be foolish to do it that way anyway because the album would lose its solidity. plus, an all instrumental disc could be boring to listen to. trent definitely knows how to mix instrumentals and lyrical tracks. having two mixed discs would only add to the concept albums he is known for.

speaking of “starfuckers, inc.”, that was the b-side to “the day the world went away”. trent reznor has never put a b-side on an album with the exception of “big man with a gun” on the downward spiral. however, that was only on the import release of the “march of the pigs” cd-single; the american release did not contain the track. i personally have my doubts that “starfuckers, inc.” will be on the new album. it has already been released in america and it most likely does not fit into the concept of the new album, which is rumored to be very mature and serious. “starfuckers, inc.” is a very cynical, tongue-in-cheek hard rock track that i suspect was there to get attention,  i see no reason why it would be a b-side to a cd-single and on the “most anticipated album of the decade” (alternative press). having 2 out of 3 tracks on the album would render halo 13 (“the day the world went away” cd-single) basically useless, save the nice “quiet version” of the title track. i for one do not want “starfuckers, inc.” on my copy of the cd. the us release has 23 reported tracks, perhaps trent has a new track in store for american fans. maybe germany never got to hear “starfuckers, inc.” and that is why it's on their cd. another analysis is, how would you feel if trent had put the notorious b-side cover “get down make love” off of the “sin” cd-single onto the next album, broken? it wouldn't make any sense with the rest of the music and it would make it a less solid album.

whether or not “starfuckers, inc.” is on the cd, it is a few seconds shorter than both the tape and cd versions, which end with crowd cheering and a kiss sample respectively. perhaps the music at the end of the cd version is a lead in to the next album track, “complication”?

web site notes that the song titles, such as “the day the world went away” and “i'm looking forward to joining you finally” are getting longer. trent is notorious for having relatively short and simple song titles (“wish”, “sin”, “closer”, “piggy”, et cetera). perhaps a more grown up and mature sound is reflected by his choices in titles?

the latest single, “we're in this together”, is about four minutes and forty five seconds long on the radio. the album version, however, is up there at seven minutes. perhaps leaked file “one.swf” is an extension of this song? it contains similar lyrics if not the very same lyrics. at first people suspected trent was singing in "one.swf" “all i've undergone, i will keep on”. however, clearly and officially trent is singing “all that we were is gone we have to hold on” in the new single. perhaps “one.swf” is the extra few minutes or maybe even a remix. or maybe it is from another song completely, and the lyrics fit the same theme. either way, both songs are quite good.

“no, you don't” is a really stupid name for a song. what the fuck, trent?

“la mer” is an atmospheric song with a creepy, circular piano melody. it was from a song session where trent spent time in total isolation. this was the only song he kept from that session. “la mer” is french for “the sea.” this song uses piano, bass, and dance beats before musically drifting away into the sea.

“into the void” is a spacey lyrical song with cellos and other stringed instruments.

“pilgrimage” is an instrumental death metal song that will reportedly put new “metal” bands like korn to shame.

“somewhat damaged” is a very hard rock number with lyrics. it has a driving beat and combines industrial music with dance.

“ripe (with decay)” is the final song of the album. it is a quiet acoustic song like “hurt” which coincidentally closed the previous album. this acoustic song also has massive beats that reportedly threatened the studio computer monitors.

fans suspect that “the great below” will be a very emotional song that they look forward to. one fan suspected “one.swf” was from the song “the frail”. when questioned she answered that the singing was.. frail. however, even the combined time length of the “one” clips is longer than the reported track time of the song. perhaps “one” is from the album's title track?

keep in mind, since this is only the german release of the cd (which comes out a week later), the domestic version of the cd could be a little or a lot different. possible differences include sequence and even choice of songs.

dr. dre did some mixing work with trent reznor, but it is not known if this collaboration will appear on the album. known guests on the album are david bowie's keyboardist mike garson, guitarist adrien belew of king crimsom, and ministry drummer william rieflin.

almost all of the album is performed by trent reznor. everything is written by trent reznor. mixing, engineering and production by trent reznor and alan moulder. additional production on “starfuckers, inc.” by charlie clouser. “starfuckers, inc.” contains an
interpolation of “you're so vain” by carly simon and, at least on the cd version, a closing crowd sample from kiss.

this new album could be a commercial hit or a miss. on one hand, the album is sure to garner great reviews from critics. on the other hand, the kids probably won't like it, i suspect. i think it's a pretty sad world when nine inch nails is the most mature music out there. the new album will be adult contemporary, because the kids have their limp bizkits and blink-182's now. i could be wrong. depending on how mtv and radio stations embrace the new nine inch nails, perhaps this could be the biggest hit in years. it remains to be seen. september 21 is the day of the release of the new album. (other new releases on the 21st include new albums from ex-soundgarden leader chris cornell, type o negative, the cure, tori amos, the complete david bowie back catalogue, and a compilation of performances on saturday night live. the only album i suspect that would give nin a run for their money is tori's, who also has a strong following. on that day i will pick up both double albums by nin and tori. eventually i will probably pick up the cure, cornell, the snl comp and maybe even a bowie cd or two. music seems to definitely be heading toward improvement as we approach the new millennium.)

i fully expect this to be the best album of the year, if not the decade. i have been following this new music closely, and the songs i have heard, "the day the world went away", "starfuckers, inc." and "we're in this together" have all been incredibly impressive and fresh. i look forward to the album.

this review was written by travis christensen. information and comments have been assembled from various sources. thanks a lot to the following resources:
the nin hotline
seems like salvation news
rolling stone july ‘99 nin article
alternative press september ‘99 nin article
#nin99 dalnet channel and its users
thank you to for providing everybody with the tracklisting
also see.. the official site,

    The official tracklisting for the US release has been announced, and it is the same. I, for one, am a little disappointed at the inclusion of "Starfuckers, Inc.". Undoubtedly, most people don't care, however I do. I've waited a long time for a good solid NIN album and I think Trent is screwing it up just a little by including this rocking yet immature b-side. I think it belongs on the cd-single for "TDTWWA", not the new album. No disrespect to fans of the song; I love "Starfuckers, Inc.". I just didn't want it on the album because I believe it will detract from the solidity and it will render halo 13 pretty much useless. Halo 13 contained 3 tracks, and now 2 of them are on the new album, albeit "Starfuckers, Inc." is in a different, shorter form. Trent may as well put "TDTWWA (Quiet)" on the album as a bonus track since he's already fucking things up. Perhaps I am overthinking this. I just hope Trent doesn't disappoint. There is more to an album than good songs. Amazing albums like The Downward Spiral or OK Computer by Radiohead all had contingency, which combines all these great songs into really solid, beautiful albums. I hope Trent knows what he's doing with this "Starfuckers, Inc." business, that is all.
    On another note, scans of the new album and next single are available online. The front and back covers and tracklisting scans are all available on the official web site linked below. Halo 15, which silly enough contains two versions of "We're In This Together", the radio edit and the album version, has scans which can be seen on the Seems Like Salvation site, also linked below. Halo 15 is an international release only and will mark the first ever Halo to not be released in America. I'm only going to buy it if I see it really cheap. If you want to hear "We're In This Together", request it from your local radio station. By the way, the aforementioned cd art scans are flower-related, like the single to "The Day The World Went Away". Kind of cool, but mildly disappointing.

Notes: 9/9/99
    The MTV Video Music Awards was biggest night for new NIN music so far this year. The live band performed a song in the middle of the awards show, and surprisingly it was not the new single "We're In This Together". They played the title cut, "The Fragile". The song is very cool; it's a slow groovy number not unlike "Piggy" from the last album. It featured a strings section. I liked it a lot, but it did not rock like people had hoped, and I'm sure a lot of kids were confused when they saw it. But it was still great. By the way, this marks the first NIN live performance in many years... I think three. On a couple side notes, actor Johnny Depp introduced Trent & Co. That, and Trent looks really old now. At least today.
    Johnny Depp wasn't the only one hyped about NIN playing the show. During the pre-show, almost everyone was raving about seeing the band, including R&B singer and NIN fan Aaliyah. Kurt Loder wouldn't shut up about NIN. During this part of the show they aired a segment of the interview Loder did with Trent recently, his first since 1995. It was pretty interesting, but not much new news if you've been keeping up with the NIN related summer articles.
    One interesting thing during the interview segment, however, is a clip of Trent in the studio with a new song being played. The song is "The Great Below" and it sounds great. It's quite atmospheric, and the lyrics are introspective and emotional like most fans expected. I think that is going to be a great song.
    As if that wasn't enough, the commercial for "The Fragile" debuted. Visually it featured a video display of the front and back covers of the new album, including the colored and sliced up half-NIN logo. It was cool, but the coolest part is that, like the "ninetynine" commercial of last year's show, it featured brand new music from the album. It's hard to tell exactly which song or songs were played. All I remember is that it really rocked. Unfortunately my mom was talking through it so I didn't get to listen as closely as I would have wanted. However I taped the whole thing and I will go back and re-listen to all this new music and perhaps make further commentary.
    So, that brings the "songs we've heard from the new album" list up to:
The Day The World Went Away
Starfuckers, Inc.
We're In This Together
The Fragile
The Great Below (clip)
Metal (clip; Gary Numan cover song originally destined for X-Files movie soundtrack; not on album, but maybe a single)
plus unknown song segments in the Shockwave teaser "one.swf", the '98 MTV Awards commercial, and this year's brand new '99 MTV Awards commercial.
    Now I am going to tell you what I think about all this. I still don't think the kids will love it. The new songs aren't anything like "Closer" or "Head Like A Hole". They're beyond that, and to some listeners that is just no good. I think Trent really wants people to like his new music because he put so much time and effort into it, that and the music is, in fact, really good. MTV is really pushing the album too. For your enjoyment, here are some near quotes:
"This is just the most amazing album." -Kurt Loder on The Fragile
"Reznor just rocked. The crowd was really into it." -Serena Altschul on the performance of the song "The Fragile"
But the kids don't agree. They want disposable rock music, a la Limp Bizkit, Kid Rock (whose performance I really enjoyed tonight, perhaps due to the fact that Run DMC and Aerosmith helped out). They don't want Trent singing about anything that "eats the fear" or "eats the pain". And strings? The kids want turntables. I could be wrong but I still don't think the new stuff is connecting very well with them. I can't really judge on a personal basis because obviously I am a fan. And when I say "kids" I mean casual listeners who are not really NIN fans (but don't hate them either). I really like that all the artists who have listened to Trent's new album think that it's great, and all the critical praise it's gotten. But that doesn't really mean anything to today's music fan. It is a little odd, I must admit, that MTV is plugging this album so much. Certainly they know that NIN is one of the biggest bands in decades. But, saying that a brand new jazzy song with only a couple sections of heavy guitar riffs is "rocking"? And, come on, I saw the people there. They were so confused. It was a great performance but I really don't think it's grabbed the attention that Trent and MTV had hoped for. Sorry, just my opinion. Perhaps WITT would have been a better choice. I think Trent played the song he wanted to play. That's fine and good but why appear on MTV if you're not going to play your hit? Is this the first in a long line of TV promotional appearances? Will we be seeing a rocking performance of "No, You Don't" on Letterman? I don't really care because I don't think that would be "selling out". I think he wants people to buy the album so they can hear some of the better songs that won't be singles. And, personally, I want MTV to bring back Unplugged. I've always wanted a NIN Unplugged set. Maybe some day I will post the set list I made for it a couple years ago. Though I'm sure the new songs would go over much better.
    Anyway, I'm glad NIN was on to make an otherwise plain VMA more interesting. I dug Kid Rock's performance and Lauryn Hill's - though I thought there'd be more to hers. I really liked Moby's DJ introduction to Ricky Martin's awful performance; Moby was the official house DJ. I was disappointed they let Fatboy Slim "perform" instead of Moby though. Fatboy's set was just a lame re-enactment of the stupid video which, for whatever reason, won best direction. Fatboy played the piano while the music played off of a DAT and the people danced to it. As if Fatboy just spinning the records was idle enough, now he has to play the piano while the music plays over the loud speakers. I liked the drum & bass bastardization of the Britney Spears and 'N Sync songs, it was actually a fun performance. Nothing else was worth mentioning, performance-wise.
    It was great to see 2Pac's and Biggie's moms up there together. It was a wonderful moment and they really got their message across. Chris Rock was funny, but not as funny as he was a couple years ago when he hosted last. A lot of people didn't get it. And a lot of the people he teased didn't like it. But some took it well, perhaps too well - Ricky Martin for example, who got five awards (that's five too many). But generally it was a pretty dull show, with those few exceptions.

    The "One" clip is the same song as the song played in the new commercial aired on MTV! I now have 3:32 of the song. The song begins really atmospheric with a faint keyboard, kind of in the vain of Aphex Twin. Then it adds some more soft synth melody and Trent definitely whispering "all i've undergone i will keep on". Then suddenly the music gets kind of techno-y with weird loops and synth sounds. And a faint, droning guitar begins. Then it cuts to the heavy metal, almost NOISE, of the new commercial in support of the album. Trent is definitely singing something, and it's a different line. The commercial begins with him screaming over some dark, heavy layers of guitars and keyboard hooks, then a powerful riff begins. Trent sings loudly "underneath it all but still recall" (or "we crawl"). Then the vocals of what was previously only known as "one, part 3" begin, with the same lyrics as the first part of the song. The music gets soft again but with crazy piano notes cascading. Then it ends kind of in an empty and inconclusive way. The ending kind of reminds me of Trent's description of the infamous "La Mer", which is what I think the song is. So I am only missing a minute and a half of the song! This album is going to be great.
    Also, I'd just like to add this in addendum. Like the commercial released during last year's VMA's, this commercial could very well be a collage of two (or more!) different songs. Because Trent is singing lyrics with the word "under" in it, and because the description of La Mer makes no mention of a hard rock part, the other song in the new commercial could be a part of the song "Underneath It All". But the total of the teaser clips and the new commercial are definitely not from that song alone because the official track time is only 2:46! I still think "One" is from "La Mer" and maybe even the commercial is too. But part of the commercial is definitely the same song as the teaser clips.
    Now I am wondering if last year's commercial (nicknamed "slipping away") will be on the album or not. I recall Trent saying it won't be, but maybe he's changed his mind. And maybe one or more of the four songs he took those clips from will be on the album. When I buy the album I will write an actual review, not just this preview page based on snippets of information.
    Well, fuck, I just keep on thinking up new things. This idea was from a friend of mine, James, at school. He suggested that maybe both discs do have a theme, even though they're not "instrumental" and "with lyrics" like a lot of people thought they were. And the official page labels them not disc 1 and disc 2 but rather "left" and "right". Here's what I think, and this is almost completely based off of James's idea: I think that one disc will be content and one lost. Originally I was going to write that one would be more peaceful and one angry. Almost like saying one soft, one hard. Examine disc 2's song titles: lots of references to searching and being lost. And "Starfuckers, Inc.", which I still wish wasn't on the album, might have something to do with Trent not fitting in - to society, I guess. I mean, he had nothing in common with anyone else at the VMA's, right? He was one of three people who refused to give comments at the show - the other two were Prince and Regis. And the other CD has more of a solid feeling. Not solid musically but I think lyrically. In "The Day The World Went Away" there is a sense of knowing what happened, even though it's not a song about something really happy that occurred. In "We're In This Together" there is hope in the lyrics. In "The Fragile" Trent is also clinging to something and, also, is being responsible for maybe the first time ever - "i won't let you fall apart...". If the teasers are really "La Mer", then Trent is still clinging onto something even though all this stuff is happening to him (as you can tell by the super layered music). In "The Great Below" I think the theme of the next disc starts to unfold. He still remains sane but now knows that all that he's "undergone" has taken him and that he is going to, as the lyrics of the MTV clip say, "take [his] place in the great below". So this is when the plot of the album thickens. The emotionally overwhelming music of "The Great Below" will lead into the next disc which will be full of despair and a sense of totally being lost. I haven't figured it all out yet, but I think I am definitely onto something here. When I know more, I will write it out on this page! However I refuse to download the album before it's out; I don't want to cheapen my experience.
    The above paragraph has just been confirmed to me. Though I have yet to see it, the second part of the interview features a section where Trent talks about "The Downward Spiral being about things falling apart, and The Fragile about trying to keep things together."

    Just some minor new news. If you're one of those hardcore fans who will be buying the new album in all three formats, you'll be pleased to know The Fragile will contain two new tracks on the triple vinyl set. Thanks to, we know that the two new songs are called "The New Flesh" and "10 Miles High".
    What does that mean to me personally? Not too much. I'm not gonna buy the vinyl. I'm not rich or that obsessed. I'll download the songs when someone encodes them. The titles don't seem too interesting but when has a NIN song ever been boring or generic? I think it's great Trent is sharing some of the "rejects". I always wanted him to offer them as mp3's on the official site. As you may or may not know, in the early winter of 1999 the official statement was that Trent had made "over 40 tracks". When he was interviewed by Rolling Stone he was still making new music, so he's probably amassed almost 60 songs. There are 23 songs on the CD and 25 on the LP. I hope there's more to come, regardless of the format. Though it is kind of annoying that the vinyl people get the new songs when they could easily fit onto either disc. With two discs you can get a total time between 140-160 minutes depending on how crammed you want to make it. Trent is only choosing to include 114 minutes, so why not give the CD buyers the extra songs? I can think of two reasons:
1. The songs are not that great. (Remember the Porter Remix of "TDTWWA"?)
2. Trent is blatantly trying to rip us off.
Why would I say such a mean heretical thing? Because it's true. Why would Trent not include the two songs? I'm sure they're good songs if they're actually by him, but if he's less proud of them why put them on the album at all? Why not make it a b-side, like the bizarre but cool "A Violent Fluid" (March Of The Pigs cd-single)? It's more likely Trent is trying to swindle his own strongest fans. Halo 13 was different in all versions - the cd version, the vinyl version which had no "Starfuckers, Inc." but did have the Porter Ricks remix, and the cassette version which had an alternate ending of "Starfuckers, Inc." (crowd chanting "Nine Inch Nails!" rather than the Kiss live sample). And honestly, why? If he really wanted to "give something to his fans" then why not just provide the music for free, like the "Metal" sampler that was purposely leaked on the official site? I don't get it, Trent. "Are we not living up to what we're supposed to be??"
    With that ranting done, I'm still looking forward to the new songs. :)

Final update: The Big Rundown.
    So it begins.
    The first review of The Fragile has appeared. You can read the article from British magazine "Kerrange!" by clicking here. It says what we've all been expecting for the last five years: The Fragile is the best album ever.
    The article is interesting and you should all read it. However, because this page is about keeping up-to-date with the new album, I will summarize it for you.
Five stars - Classic, says the magazine.
In the same vain as David Bowie's epic ambient masterpiece "Low" and Pink Floyd's dark concept album "The Wall".
"After this, you may never want to hear Slipknot or Korn or Limp Bizkit again." -magazine
The album is "fraught with emotion, incorporating startling new sounds."
"Reznor is the true genius of '90s rock and 'The Fragile' is his masterpiece."
Suffice to say that "this album kicks ass." Anyway, the reviewer Paul Elliott goes on to say quite a lot about the songs on both disc. To be more specific you should read the review itself, but here's the lowdown:
01, 01. Somewhat Damaged. It begins with a funky little acoustic guitar, then quickly reveals more well-known NIN elements: "a hypnotic, mechanized beat and a lyric full of self-loathing", including the line "Too fucked up to care any more." I love you Trent!
01, 02. The Day The World Went Away. Although this isn't a new song to fans, the review describes the song as one of the central tracks of the album.
01, 03. The Frail. "A two-minute instrumental evoking the eerie calm of Bowie's 'Low'." Kind of reminds me of the teaser clips...
01, 04. The Wretched. A crunchy funk song similar to "Closer".
01, 05. We're In This Together. One of the other new songs the fans have already heard. P.S. the video debuted today (Thursday 9/15). I'll catch it when TRL re-airs it tonight.
01, 08. Even Deeper. Reminds the reviewer of 1991 U2 and hints at the Eastern mysticism that Led Zeppelin incorporated in their music, such as songs like "Kashmir".
01, 09. Pilgrimage. A song described as being chaotic and just downright awesome. This Pink Floyd-esque song contains an interesting idea that the "old" July Rolling Stone article mentioned. Trent used a 100% computer generated marching band to "create an incendiary atmosphere redolent of a fascist rally."
01, 11. La Mer. The title reminds the reviewer of Smashing Pumpkins for some reason. He describes the song as "a gentle mood piece with whispered French voices over plinking piano." Probably not the teaser clips afterall, since "all that i've undergone i will keep on" isn't exactly Francois. Oh well, it was a decent theory anyway.
01, 12. The Great Below. The amazing and emotionally revealing song I and others expected it to be. "Reznor at his most vulnerable," says the review.
02, 02. Into The Void. Ambient meets electro-rock.
02, 03. Where Is Everybody?. Again reminds the reviewer of Smashing Pumpkins. Dark, brooding pop music
02, 06. Starfuckers, Inc. The song I wished wasn't on the album is described by this reviewer as "bitter and twisted." P.S. Kurt Loder thinks it's about Manson.
02, 07. Complication. "Soundgarden gone techno," totes the review. Hey, I love Soundgarden.
02, 09. The Big Come Down. Weird funk music. Picture Trent replacing George Clinton as leader of Parliament/Funkadelic.
02, 11. Ripe (With Decay). An angsty take on Pink Floyd.
    Does that not sound just fucking dope to you too? I think I will agree with the reviewer that this album is a classic.
    By the way, the two songs I previously mentioned will be on the vinyl copy of the album are supposedly instrumental. Also, the import-only cd-single of "We're In This Together" will be two discs, most likely to include non-album tracks and maybe multimedia features. Why again is Trent not releasing this to his American fans? In the words of DJ Shadow: "It's the money...".
    This will be my final update. The album is less than a week away and now you the reader knows the bulk of what the album will be like. I refuse to download mp3's of the new album because I've already heard enough to tide me over. I look forward to this album more than anything else I can think of.
    In closing, once this album is released to the public I want to make a page where people can leave comments about the album itself. Whether you're a hardcore "ninnie" or just a guy who bought album based on a good review or recommendation from a friend, I want to know what you think. I will figure out some way I can make a page of all your comments on the album, like what you thought of it as a whole as well as song-by-song, what the public probably makes it as and how well it will do.
    Album arrives 9.21.99.

P.S. About the different versions:
Cassette version features an alternate version of "Please".
Vinyl set includes the 2 extra songs, plus longer versions of "TDTWWA", "Even Deeper" and "La Mer".

Also, Dr. Dre's involvement has been revealed. He mixed or helped mix the song "Even Deeper", one of the songs which is longer on the vinyl. Dr. Dre rules all. "Chronic 2001, plug."

The double digipack has the lyric book down the middle, containing no pictures of Trent. The front cover is flat and the back is "puffy".

Vote for "We're In This Together" on TRL if you want to. It's better than the other videos on TRL, but worse than all the other NIN videos too. Not that it's a bad video, it's just below average. The link to vote is here: vote nin and vote often.

    Travis Christensen - HowIsYa

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