While you wait for your vinyl copy to arrive, you can listen to the second installment of the Watchmen score on Apple Music and Spotify. You can also sneak a peek at the packaging of the vinyl over at Birth.Movies.Death, where NIN enthusiast Scott Wampler goes over the details of the press copy he received this week.
If you haven't picked it up yet, Volume 2 is still available for pre-order on Amazon. If you didn't pull the trigger on that sweet deal from Target, you've missed the boat there, as their preorders are marked as sold-out - a fulfillment status I hadn't actually run into in my 13+ years working as an ecommerce developer.
The blurb on the NIN store for the release is as follows:
Currently only available in digital format, Trent and Atticus are at their most abstract, deconstructed and beautiful with this suite of music that glues Trey Edward Shults' emotionally devastating film together.
In related news, Volume 2 of Watchmen has started appearing on Spotify for folks where it's already Wednesday.
$80 + shipping seems like a lot for two hours of harrowing score music - and it is! But when you plonk down for the extended version of the Bird Box soundtrack, what arrives is unlike any other vinyl I've come across. The die-cut box is heavy (four 180gm records will do that, I suppose), and aside from "NULL 09 EXTENDED TRENT REZNOR AND ATTICUS ROSS" there are no markings on the box - although there's a gritty texture to the container itself, which features six holes cut into the top - a reference to the box in the movie that served as an organic warning system.
Inside the box, sandwiched between bubble wrap, each record comes in a unique semi-transparent sleeve with gritty patterns overlaying the translucent outer sleeve - an inner sleeve further protects the records. The album comes with a download card (because the Highway Hi-Fi wasn't designed for 180gm 12" platters), and the inside-bottom of the box has track names.
Aside from the titles on the side of the box, there didn't appear to be any credits. The official unboxing video posted earlier mentioned something about "being contaminated" and, honestly, I didn't see any evidence of that at first.
Oh hey. Did you hear? With Teeth has been given the Definitive Edition treatment, having been remastered, and apparently some subtle fixes have been made in the mixes. I don't know what that means in this case, but for the sake of comparison, when The Downward Spiral DE was released, there was a panning hiccup at the beginning of Heresy that I'm pretty sure only I noticed, and that got corrected.
Universal Music Enterprises (UMe) shared a promo video that gives you a look at what you get alongside to slabs of 180 gram vinyl, including a 12 page booklet and a new lyric poster - art director John Crawford worked with former art director Rob Sheridan to produce a new take on the enormous poster that had been offered to members of The Spiral over a decade ago.
In January, we saw the digital release of Bird Box (abridged), a selection of 10 songs from the soundtrack to the Netflix film Bird Box, as scored by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, with a run time just over an hour. Today, the unabridged Bird Box score dropped on nin.com, with twice as much music and deluxe physical packaging. The four records come in what appear to be semi-translucent sleeves, and are packaged in a cardboard box resembling the box from the film.
With your $80 purchase, you can download the album as MP3s, or losselessly in FLAC or WAV formats. The digital artwork is a pixelated photo of the top of the box, and the tracks have slightly different lengths than what is in the abridged release from earlier in the year. Given the different track order, the segues are no doubt going to be different as well.
This is not easy listening. If you want to make any situation more tense and anxious for two hours, the Bird Box score is here for you.
Over at Birth. Movies. Death., Scott Wampler opens up his press copy of Watchmen Vol 1, including a card that only went out with promo copies. Scott breaks down the Sons of Pale Horse/The Book of Rorschach connections to the world of Watchmen, and shares copious photos of the album packaging.
A couple of interviews came out today that are worth your time reading through. First, over at Rolling Stone, Kory Grow spoke with Trent and covered topics ranging from Pretty Hate Machine, playing The Fragile as a live set, the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame, and of course, scoring Watchmen.
In a less traditional setting, Steve Baltin does a thoughtful Q&A over on Forbes, going in pretty deep about scoring Watchmen as a television series compared to scoring film, but also talking about things like sequencing your album, music that reveals itself over time, and more. It's a very good read - nice job Steve.
Now that (spoiler alert) the amazing packaging has been unveiled for volume 1 of Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' score for Watchmen, you may have revisited Amazon hoping to get an order in, only to find that the first volume is no longer accessible from Amazon.
Important caveat: It is entirely possible that, given that shipping is free, the order may not ship until the final of the three volumes is released. I would even go so far as to say it is probable that if you have three items in a cart with free shipping, they are going to be shipped together, which means your order will be put aside until December 26, and you'll receive all three records at once.
Of course, the digital releases will be available soon at the official NIN website, so you could snag those while you wait, and you might just about break even.