AND ALL THAT COULD HAVE BEEN
LIVE ALBUM NOTHING, UNIVERSAL RELEASE:
JANUARY 22, 2002 (USA), LATER IN SEVERAL OTHER TERRITORIES REVIEW:
FEBRUARY 22, 2002
have never had the opportunity to experience Nine Inch Nails live. Photos
of Trent looking something like the ferocious hunter aliens from the Predator
movies, covered in mud and taunting his fans, gave me the distinct impression
that NIN must be the ultimate live experience.
Of course a recording can never capture the mood of the crowd or a killer
bass bursting out of loudspeaker larger than life. Still, I would have
expected more excitement from this album. The songs included represent
the band history nicely with a few from each album, rendered almost exactly
like their recorded original versions. That makes for a good best of-album
with added crowd noise, but doesn't do much creatively. I have all the
albums, so why would I want this?
Songs like "March of the Pigs" were recorded live to begin with, and the
difference between the versions is negligible. Having heard so many excellent
NIN remixes through the years by everyone from Trent Reznor himself to
Jim Thirlwell and Aphex Twin, I am frankly surprised nothing more radical
has happened in the live situation.
I should add here, that the performances and the quality of recording
are excellent. There just isn't anything truly special about "And All
That Could Have Been", so the reason for the release remains unclear.
Well, except for making big bucks, I suppose.
The deluxe edition (not on review here, it didn't arrive in time) contains
the additional disc "Still" with stripped down material. The
thing to go for, craving the full live experience, might be the DVD-version
with multiple camera angles, audio commentary and other extra features
covering the 2000 "Fragility Tour" in the United States. Or else you might
just want to save your money until the next tour.