Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Nine Inch Nails - The Perfect Drug

Year: 1997
Genre: Industrial - Dance

Highlight Track: "Perfect Drug (Plug Mix)"

What the hell does anyone see in the movie Lost Highway? I mean I know its soundtrack brought Rammstein to America's attention and included this pretty great Nine Inch Nails' song but other than that the movie doesn't have a redeeming quality. Totally Lynch resting on his laurels (but I digress).

I guess Trent Reznor decided to release this EP so that fans could get the song while distancing themselves from that disaster of a film. In usual 90's Reznor brilliance he farmed out the song for several remixes by some of the best in the biz and ended up not even including the original edit of the song on this disc. That was pretty gutsy move on Reznor's part but of course it paid of brilliantly. The Perfect Drug EP is the last of NIN's great remix releases of the 90's. It rounds out the almost 10 year hitting streak of terrific EPs that started with Sin, included the perfection of Fixed, and spun off into a million variations of tracks from The Downward Spiral.

On this EP we get remixes from Meat Beat Manifesto, Plug, Spacetime Continuim, The Orb, and NIN themselves. It makes for a great example of variations on a theme. Each remix explores different directions of the same song in a way that never feels repetitive over the EP's 35 minute runtime.

While all of the remixes are exciting, it is the Plug version (an alias of electronica genius, Luke Vibert) that impresses the most. Vibert somehow manages to speed the song up to drum-n-bass tempo while slowing down its dramatic elements to a point where "The Perfect Drug" is reminiscent of "Something I Can Never Have". It is pure genius how Vibert manages these disparate elements within the same track and the conflict it creates makes for great listening.

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