It didn’t take long for Reznor and his NIN band to recognize the affluence of releasing their own music, retaining every element of music as a 100% payoff. The high-cost Deluxe Special Edition of their last, Ghosts I-IV sold out very quickly, with the download process, while a learning experience, paying off in the end with important preparatory knowledge. Soon, that album became available as a physical CD and still sold reasonably well.
Their next album is taking advantage of previous lessons learned and is now out in the form of a free download, which can also be had in the healthier, higher resolution FLAC format. Soon, it too, will be sold as a physical CD in stores.
The Slip is familiar NIN with plenty of industrial ambience reminiscent of much earlier NIN albums. It is a mix of the high energy and of the low-key (the piano-driven “The Lights in the Sky,” the lonely space ambient drone of “Corona Radiata”) found in various NIN works scattered across their catalogue. In short, The Slip is a welcome NIN album that sounds like redemption of sorts, a return to the sound that is enjoyed by many fans. The usual down-trodden, hurt, broken, fragile, and lost themes are in place. Trent Reznor has created, not a masterpiece, mind you, but a damn fine NIN album, one worthy of multiple plays.
All said, The Slip is a NIN journey you’re going to enjoy immensely. If it doesn’t grab hold at first, by all means return to it. It has claws.