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The Fragile

4.5 out of 5 stars 978 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Sept. 21 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Universal Music Canada
  • ASIN: B00001P4TH
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 978 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #9,320 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Disc: 1
1. Somewhat Damaged
2. The Day The World Went Away
3. The Frail
4. The Wretched
5. We're In This Together
6. The Fragile
7. Just Like You Imagined
8. Even Deeper
9. Pilgrimage
10. No, You Don't
See all 12 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. The Way Out Is Through
2. Into The Void
3. Where Is Everybody?
4. The Mark Has Been Made
5. Please
6. Starfuckers, Inc.
7. Complication
8. I'm Looking Forward To Joining You, Finally
9. The Big Come Down
10. Underneath It All
See all 11 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Product Description

Japanese only 2 x SHM-CD (Super High Material CD - playable on all CD players) pressing. Universal. 2008.

The Fragile is even bleaker than 1994's The Downward Spiral as it lurches along with a perpetual scowl. A frenzied collection of buzz-saw pop, Trent Reznor's grim opus yo-yos through two CDs with scattershot intensity. Hushed one minute and explosive the next, spite and anger intermix with heartbreaking resignation, sometimes in the course of one song. Still, Reznor's dour and uncompromising approach is accessible and undeniably entertaining, even when he eschews vocals altogether. Unchanged are the obsessive lengths that he goes to for the sake of a dynamic thrill ride. The quiet tones that open the instrumental "Just Like You Imagined" suddenly erupt into a barrage of off-time rhythms and noodling keyboard riffs, all rising to a torrid conclusion. The sheer sonic invention on display here is astounding. Reznor's production approaches Brian Eno's in terms of dynamism, though it arises from a profoundly different sensibility. "Starfuckers Inc" uses chopped-up vocals for the verses and a shouting mob for its propulsive, Ministryesque chorus to mercilessly slam some of NIN's imitators (most pointedly, Marilyn Manson). And while there's nothing here as dance-floor-ready as Downward Spiral's "Closer," "Where Is Everybody" comes close, thanks to its slow, sweaty gyrations and Adrian Belew's slippery guitar figures. The Fragile's songs are ultimately simple explorations of deep disillusionment. However, once Reznor finishes twisting them out of shape, they're towering soundscapes of rage that are at once terrifying and beautiful. --Matthew Cooke

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
There seems to be two main schools of thought to The Fragile. Many praise it for it's gargantuan scope, immaculately crafted music and soundscapes, and polished production. Many others feel the album is too over-indulgent, and that it gets lost in a sea of texture and instrumentals. I agree with both. All of NIN's musical and lyrical themes have matured in the five years since The Downward Spiral. Trent Reznor's magnificent compositional and atmospherical gifts are candy for the ears; however, at times they are used to mask sub-par songwriting. Some tracks on this album are gold. "Somewhat Damaged" is a primitive hard rocker, with a more organic feel of acoutic guitars contrasting the record's focus on electronics. "The Day The World Went Away" is beautiful, and one of the few ballads in the band's repitoire. "The Wretched" bends pulsating techno-metal through a haunting filter. "The Fragile" askews Reznor's normal lyrics about loathing and sadness in favor of an extremely positive message. The first disc ends with the beautifully serene "The Great Below", and the second disc pciks right back up with the fuzz-soaked rocker "The Way Out Is Through", the amazingly well written "Into The Void", and the rap-influenced "Where Is Everybody?". "I'm Looking Forward To Joining You, Finally" practically sounds like "Piggy", Pt. 2. As far as the instrumentals go, some are a waste of time, but there are some good ones. "The Frail" is a simple piano piece, "Complication" is a amped-up techno track, "The Mark Has Been Made" is subdued ambience, and the album-closing "Ripe (With Decay) is vintage Nine Inch Nails eerieness.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
There is a lot to be said about this double-LP. There are 23 tracks, 6 of them being instrumentals. Some would comment that the sheer volumn of the Fragile makes it a unlistenable. If this is you that's fine, stick with something more straight forward, maybe the Broken EP or March of the Pigs. However, if you see the art in this album and that no song could be removed, well, good for you (Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness by the Smashing Pumpkins might be another one to check out). As follows are the highlights of the album, in my opinion:
Somewhat Damaged: only four notes, but arranged well. Is a great opener and reminds me of a different side of Mr. Self Destruct.
The Day the World Went Away: Great lyrics, and just the right amount of music. A classic. (note, there is a great remix of this song on halo 13 or 15, The Day the World Went Away quiet)
The Frail: simply beautiful. Check this out even if you don't like NIN. (note, a great remix on Things Falling Apart)
We're in this Together: Not one of the best songs on this double-LP, however it's well made and has a great piano part at the end. A great song to listen to if you're just starting to get into the NIN scene.
The Fragile: Probably one of the best songs on this. Slow, quiet, and gives off a ray of hope. Words can't describe this song, so, go listen to it.
Just Like You Imagined: Instrumental, but, a great one. Trent knows what he's doing. This song seems to give off a different meaning depending on what mood you're in.
La Mer: God, a great song.
The Way out is Through: Has the opposite approuch of Somewhat Damaged. A great way to start the second half of the Fragile.
Into the Void: I couldn't say La Mer wasn't a great song and not say that this one isn't.
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Format: Audio CD
I am dumbstricken...This is definately better than "The Downward Spiral" or "Pretty Hate Machine". Trent's true talent is revealed. This album is to NIN as Ok Computer is to Radiohead, The Dark Side of the Moon and The Wall in one. I'm a fan of everything from Blink-182 to Led Zeppelin to Jimi Hendrix and Coldplay. This would probably be 8 out of my top ten.An overview-
The Day the World Went Away...excellent and melodic. A thinking song. Fun to imagine music videos for. maybe the best on the record (already) 9.5/10
The Frail...beautiful piano and a perfect transition into the next song. 9/10
The Wrethced...extremely dark and haunting. guitar distortion is amazingly crafted and blends perfect with the piano. thought provoking lyrics. 8.5/10
We're In This Together...the first single and possibly the best. Creepy lyrics ("they pick and they pull trying to get their fingers in"). awesome intro and guitar distortion. very original chorus and ending. 9/10
The Fragile...title track isn't so good in the beginning but gets really good. Guitar solo is incredible! 8/10
La Mer...sounds a lot like "Into the Void" Nice instrumental with a woman faintly saying something in the background. Would be better if "...Void" actually came after it. 8.5/10
The Great Below...Very melodic. My favorite on the whole record! Starts off with a quiet synth riff and builds up to the midpoint where it completely changes to a dark mood. 10/10
Into the Void...very catchy and radio-friendly but gets old and repetitive easily. Has a very nice music video though. 8/10
Where Is Everybody?...a good song. Not much to it though. 8/10
StarF***ers Inc....very angry. sounds like something off Burn, but doesn't fit the rest of the album.
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