Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Nine Inch Nails 2005
I don't talk about work all that often in this blog, and for good reason. Most of what I talk about only pertains to either my music career, my sports fan-ness, my personal opinions, or stuff that I joke about. This story combines my work with music so we'll dive in a little bit in the 8-5 grind.
This particular day, was not an 8-5 schedule- it was more like 8am-11pm. You see, I work as a the manager of a ticket office and on this day, we were doing the ticketing for an already sold out Nine Inch Nails show. Now, there is not as much to do when a show sells out, though there was still will call and guest list passes to take care of. In fact, sold out shows are great, but they do bring the tension level up a few notches for the people attending (most of the time this is due to people building the night up in their head as the perfect night only to have their high expectations ruined when they can't get the perfect spot on the floor or something else of small significance that gets blown out of proportion in their mind.)
Now, this particular show was essentially one of three warm-up shows that Nine Inch Nails was doing on the West Coast before they went on a national tour (and this was after being on hiatus for six years or so.) I was very excited as I had never seen them live and they were one of my favorite bands growing up (I was a good kid but I had to rebel somehow, right?)
Usually bands soundcheck around 4 or 5 when they are playing an 8pm show, so I was determined to check it out. From my office I heard the first chords go off and ran into the hall. Now, the venue I'm talking about has a wall of bleachers blocking anyone from seeing the stage when they first walk in to the main hall. You have to go around the bleachers in order to get a good look at the stage. I have to be honest, I was a little nervous because there were not many people in the hall (read as: it was basically empty) so I didn't want to show myself as an obvious lookie-loo and make the band angry. I walked just to the left of the bleachers and watched Nine Inch Nails soundcheck to an empty hall.
I saw four songs. "The Wretched" (which included "The Frail" intro), "The Fragile," "The Day The World Went Away," and last was "The Big Comedown." Now, "The Big Comedown" is one awesomely rocking song. Trent Reznor turned to the rest of the band right before they played the song and said, "Let's rock the f*** out of this!" And they did. I couldn't believe I was lucky enough to see it. They were definitely giving full effort and you could see they were hungry as a band.
Soon after finishing this song, a concessions lady who was carting supplies from behind stage to the back of the hall told me (and my friend and then assistant manager, Sean) that the band was getting pissed off that we back there watching. We immediately left. There was no reason to piss them off any further- especially after seeing four songs that might as well have been a private concert for us.
I must say, it was still one of the coolest things I've seen live. I suppose working at concerts and playing music often tends to dull my excitement when it comes to watching concerts. This moment, however, did not disappoint.