New Nine Inch Nails Single Surprisingly Upbeat Leader Trent Reznor uncharacteristically warm on 'We're in This Together.'

By Brian Hiatt for Sonicnet on August 1, 1999

"We're in This Together," the first official single from Nine Inch Nails' upcoming The Fragile (Sept. 21), which premiered on radio stations nationwide Friday (Aug. 27), finds the dark industrial band in a surprisingly upbeat mood.

A catchy melody and uncharacteristically benevolent lyrics accompany NIN's familiar distorted guitars, waves of feedback and looped drums.

"We're in this together now/ None of them can stop us now/ We'll make it through somehow," Reznor sings in the chorus as an army of digitally fuzzed-out guitars pumps out rapid-fire chords behind him. It even sounds like a love song as he sings, "As lost as I get I will find you/ In the deepest part of the world I will find you."

Boston rock station WFNX-FM played the track twice in a row, jumping a 4:30 p.m. official release time by several minutes. The station's program director and afternoon DJ, who would give only his on-air name, Cruze, praised the song, calling it "a really basic straight-ahead pop song as seen through the twisted lenses of Trent Reznor."

Laurie Gail, WFNX's music director, said the station immediately got a strong, positive response to the song.

Even before he heard the track, Mike Peer, music director for New York rock station K-Rock (WXRK-FM), said the station expected to put "We're in This Together" in regular rotation.

"Trent may be like the grandfather of all of [today's] really hard music," Peer said early Friday afternoon. "I'm expecting a really miraculous song."

"We're in This Together" is driven by a staccato, hip-hop-style beat, which, toward the end of the track, morphs into a frantic breakbeat reminiscent of NIN's drum & bass-influenced 1997 single "The Perfect Drug."

Like the rest of The Fragile, the track was produced by Trent Reznor and engineer/mixer Alan Moulder (Smashing Pumpkins) and recorded at Reznor's studio in New Orleans over the past year.

"We're in This Together" is not the first song to be released from The Fragile. Last month NIN released a three-track single that included two versions of "The Day the World Went Away" (RealAudio excerpt) and the cynical, edgy hard-rocker "Starfuckers, Inc." (RealAudio excerpt).

Nine Inch Nails have not released a full-length album of new material since 1994's The Downward Spiral, which spawned the hit "Closer" (RealAudio excerpt). A teaser campaign for The Fragile began nearly a year ago, with cryptic magazine and television ads that flashed only the band's distinctive "NIN" logo.

Transcribed by Keith Duemling

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