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An Omen EP, Limited Edition

4 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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Vinyl, EP, Limited Edition, November 13, 2012
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Editorial Reviews

2012 EP from this band featuring Nine Inch Nails mainman Trent Reznor plus his wife Mariqueen Maandig and Atticus Ross. An Omen is the follow-up to their self-titled debut EP. Six tracks including 'Keep It Together', 'On The Wing' and 'Speaking In Tongues'.
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Product Details

  • Vinyl (November 13, 2012)
  • limited_edition edition
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: EP, Limited Edition
  • Label: Columbia
  • ASIN: B009A9EYLS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #188,410 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. Bane on December 19, 2012
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I am a huge NIN fan and I always have to remember that this isn't NIN. On their own, HTDA is a solid and talented band. Complex sounds and thoughtful lyrics.
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By Jeff on January 20, 2013
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
First let me say that if you are expecting Nine Inch Nails you will be disappointed. If you approach it with an open mind and have an interest in electronic music you may like it. Most of the songs are quite mellow on this ep (versus the first ep), but they have a way of getting stuck in your head. I found it interesting to hear Trent work with a female singer, hopefully the band releases a full length in the near future.
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The first HTDA album grew on me. Half of it I thought was great and the other half wasn't my cup of tea but I recognized it as quality music. As a NIN fan, obviously I wanted to hear more of Trent singing, but the music was still great.

I really hope AN OMEN is just all the stuff they decided to throw off of their debut album this Spring. If that's the case, then it's okay. If this is a good example of what we have coming our way, though, I may have to write off ANGELS.

Everything is so scattershot here. The first track is awesome - great bass, very much the kind of thing we were listening to on the first EP.

I actually love ICE AGE. I know a lot of die hards have a problem with it, but I really dig the stripped down sound. It totally sounds like a different band, but I still enjoy it. And if you can find the Soft Moon remix of it, do so. Even better.

ON THE WING is fine. Forgettable, but fine.

Then there's THE SLEEP OF REASON PRODUCES MONSTERS. God I love that title. Amazing. I get the reference and that makes it even cooler. But holy cow - I used to have a crappy electronic keyboard when I was growing up in the 80's and I could create the EXACT SAME SONG with it. Keep in mind that I have ABSOLUTELY NO MUSICAL SKILL WHATSOEVER! Unlistenable. If this wasn't a direct download from the official website, I'd say it was a joke and somebody had hacked in to add a fake track.

LOOP CLOSES - a GHOSTS or soundtrack song, I also dig this one.

SPEAKING IN TONGUES. Why? Just why? This is Trent Reznor's REVOLUTION 9. Look, I love when Trent does soundscapes and gets loud and YEAR ZEROy but this is just awful.
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It is vitally important you do not approach this album as you would Nine Inch Nails. Consider this: If you go to a movie theatre to see a movie, your full attention is totally focused on the film right? That's what the goal with this album is. If you are looking for a bunch of catchy tunes to headbang to, jump around with, or play in the background whilst you do something else, this album isn't for you. If you have the capacity to still yourself, sit back in a comfy chair, and Listen (with a capital L) to something, this will be a truly unique experience layered with subtlety, nuance, and emotion, made by master craftspeople who have an unparalleled understanding of audio mixing. They are moving beyond merely "the melody" here and instead are trying to draw you in you with sonics as a whole package. Some people won't get it, or don't own a sound system that conveys it, and if they don't that's ok; There's always the Black Ops 2 theme song to get their Reznor fix. But for me, it's going to be hard to go back and listen to more traditional recordings after understanding what has been achieved here.

Here is a good litmus test: if you listened to the single "Keep It Together" and thought it was just 4 minutes of repeat? You missed the point of the song, and will miss the point of the album, because there's some amazing stuff going on in there. You just have to give it the time to reveal itself to you rather than expecting to blast it loud in your car like Head Like a Hole and then be singing the chorus to yourself the rest of the day.
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While I like a few of the songs and agree that it seems the band is finding more of their own space, I'm not really sure what that space is. In many ways there is a pretty substantial difference here between the first EP; in my opinion too much of a difference. This is mostly an electronic album, and the most vocal centric track, Ice Age, is itself still quite different from the tracks of the first EP.

Keep it together is good, but I felt like it left a little to be desired. I actually really like Ice Age - it's pretty but still has some mystery. The loop closes starts out great but the continued repetition of the vocals, and those vocals in particular, kind of ruins it. Speaking in tongues is very good, but by this time I was still waiting for more.

I'll be hoping for more from the album, but there's still some things to like here. That being said, I prefer the first EP.
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Nine inch Nails main man Trent Reznor and his other band How to Destroy Angels which includes his wife Mariqueen Maandig as well as his co-Oscar winning partner Atticus Ross and long-time art director Rob Sheridan release their second EP "An Omen" which will serve as a lead in to next year's full length album, for which a title or release date has yet to announced. The band has also signed a record deal with Columbia Records which means after 4 years Reznor is back with a major label.

Those familiar with 2010's self-titled debut release could be in for a surprise as the group have gone in a different direction sound wise, some of the songs are really stripped back and unlike on their debut EP Maandig's vocals are not as much at the forefront this time round, there is also more vocals from Reznor himself which should keep long time Nine Inch Nails fans happy. An example of the stripped back sound is one the song "Ice Age" with its plucking strings being sung over by Maandig. The music at the times will recall recent Reznor/Ross collaborations from "Ghosts I-IV" as well as the pair's two score releases for the David Fincher movies "The Social Network" and the haunting "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo".

Any Reznor release would not be the same without some big heavy beats and there is plenty to be heard on the track "On The Wing" which has Reznor on a whispered lead vocal duties. People familiar with "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" soundtrack will notice the similarities of Maandig's vocal take on "The Sleep Of Reason Produces Monsters" in which she hums over the music. If there is one track that sounds anything like a Nine Inch Nails track it would be the excellent "The Loop Closes" which sounds not too unlike "Into The Void" off "The Fragile".
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