Photos: Nine Inch Nails in Columbus OH

First off – Nine Inch Nails last night was amazing. I’d never seen them live before and the band didn’t disappoint. From song selection to performance, to one of the most amazing video projections I’ve ever seen conducted, this is a top knotch show.

And while the floor was PACKED…. where were all the suburban kids?

Empty Nine Inch Nails Show

The Schott closed off the top level completely, and the medium level where I was sitting was really empty. Over the weekend they released $17 tickets (which is why I went), but that didn’t even help the attendance.

Empty Nine Inch Nails

Nonetheless, I had a great time and wouldn’t hesitate to see them live again.

Nine Inch Nails in Columbus

Nine Inch Nails in Columbus 11/08

The crowd photos were taken moments before NIN hit the stage. Set list after the break..

Letting You
March of the PIgs
Head Down
The Frail
The Wretched
Gave Up
The Warning
The Great Destroyer

Ghosts 17
Ghosts 21
Ghosts 19
Ghosts Piggy
The Greater Good

Terrible Lie
Ghosts 31
The Hand that Feeds
Head Like a Hole


The Beginning of the End
The Good Soldier
In This Twilight

Discussion of the show in our message board.

  • I was told that the recent Alan Jackson concert also had a closed off top section. May be a sign of the tough economic times.

  • EtotheG

    Their loss — I saw this tour back in August here in Houston and it was INCREDIBLE! Easily on par with Radiohead & R.E.M. as one of the best tours of the year! Visually STUNNING (and the sound in Houston was spectacular).

    See this show, if you get the chance!!

  • ouch.. maybe a sign of the waning support of NIN.
    i’ve seen’em a bunch of times unintentionally.. lolla, woodstock.. they are pretty good i must admit.

  • Billydeewhitehall

    This woulda been better at any venue other than shitty schott.

    NIN are ALWAYS great live, there is no sign of waning support – fuck that theory. Bad economic times, poorly promoted maybe, but NIN fanbase remains very strong.

  • Linda

    The “Wretched” was never played..

  • that guy

    i was on the floor yesterday and it was fucking awesome. i look at it as the quality of the fans more than the quantity because there really are almost no assholes there.

  • Andrew

    I’m pretty sure Wretched and The Beginning of the End were not played

  • Jarod T Bone

    andrew is correct

  • Rodney

    Always so quick to blame economics.

    You all sound like a band manager trying to brush past a more likely reason …..

    and that would be the whole thing this band delivers is getting old and much past its prime. 18 or so years is enough Trent.

  • Sign of the economic times?

    I hope it is more than that. I hope it is a sign of fans no longer paying $100 a ticket, plus $20 to park… etc. I have stopped going to big shows because the ticket prices go up about 20% a year.

    an example (though an extreme one)
    I saw the Police play on their farewell tour when I was young. Tickets were $15. Minimum wage was $3.35

    the next time the Police toured it cost $250 to get a ticket, and minimum wage was $5.65

    I would argue the police were easily as popular on that Synchronicity tour as they are today.

    So, back then you had to work approx 4 hours to earn a ticket to the Police. Last year, you had to work 41 hours to get same ticket.

  • Christina

    I do not agree with NIN not having support. Look @ Angus Young and Mick Jagger — HELLO OLD! and they are still kicking out the music!
    Trent Reznor is a LEGEND… so watch what you think and say!

  • LK

    $17? Wow, that was what kept me away was the original ticket prices and the poor seating in a large venue. Wish they would have advertised that discount price a bit more.

  • unsaid

    NIN sucks anyways. they need to take the hint.

  • bob

    NIN sucks ass , just like the moron that made the comment “NIN are ALWAYS great live, there is no sign of waning support – fuck that theory.”

    You are a complete idiot and most likely suck big cocks.

  • joe

    Has NIN started to fade? I saw AC/DC Mon Nov 17 in Philly. $92 tickets. Place was packed. They’ve been around since ’73. I guess some bands never fade.

  • They don’t like to advertise $17 tickets because they know that folks will come to depend on $17 tickets.

    For example, here in Denver, the local shed is called Fiddler’s Green. (every city has one, it’s where Poison plays). They had slow summer ticket sales at $40 for lawn. Then, they dropped it to $20 for every show. Still slow (because, of course, of an additional $12 per ticket in fees).

    So, day of show they would always do 2 for 1 on lawn seats. It was awesome. People got wind of it and stopped buying tickets until day of. Obviously, that kills the guarantee for the artist (who usually gets 100% of gate, and the venue makes their cash on concessions).

    That is also why the venue doesn’t care about the charge for the tix. they just want a packed house to buy the $7 beers and $10 nachos.

  • Thingy

    I think that NIN are amazing and waning suport is totaly false!
    they rock so hard and they stick it to the man!!!
    i would TOTALY have gotten tickets if they had played anywhere near me!!!!!!!!

  • Thingy

    you are totaly rude and repulsive and have a terrible taste in music.
    you are probably listening to Hannah Montana right now, or some country crap!
    nin rock, along with the Chili Peppers, Foo Fighters, Coldplay, U2, and the list goes on.

  • Nate

    Yes because saying ‘you suck cock’ is really the most intelligent thing anyone could say…

  • stu

    AC/DC blows

  • LK

    Mmmmmmmm…$7 nachos

  • $7 nachos are good…..

  • mrbeefheart

    Funny comment…..Made me laugh.

  • mrbeefheart

    Refering to the sucking big cocks that was.

  • slick rick

    There are very few artists that can pack the house these days. Reason being is a rabid and loyal fanbase. One group that comes to mind is Tool, and maybe Pearl Jam or Bruce Springsteen. I dont know just exactly why, but their fans have some sort of unconditional love.

  • Your set-list is a bit off, and ‘Wretched’ was not played when I saw them in Nashville. Music Vice zine has the full-set list down in a recent review of nails in Montreal:

  • Chad

    I’ve seen NIN live since 1994,about six shows.Their,hands down,the best live band I’ve ever seen.I’ve seen alot of shows.Trent is one best artists.Tool is close.So the jackoffs that say they suck,have fun at your Dave Matthews show.

  • Ted

    Nice article- damn, I wish I could have been there. It’s a shame to see a NIN show half empty… if it were Coldplay or something, that would be understandable, but NIN? :C

  • brett

    I saw Nine inch Nails at the State Palace Theater in New Orleans. The year was ’94. They put on a good show. A really good show. But it seems that they were a big deal to people then. I thought I was a big fan then, but I wouldn’t purchase a ticket or an album nowadays. My wife and I just went to see The Cure at Red Rocks and they PACKED that place. Some artists just have that ability to keep a strong fanbase. Just before my wife and I moved to Denver, we went to Bourbon St. on Mardi Gras day. We were walking through the crowd and we came upon a very lonely Trent Reznor who was checking out our outfits. I smiled but had nothing to say to him. I stopped listening to his band after The Downward Spiral. He was just another face on a very crowded street.

    To Christina: Don’t tell people to watch what they think! You can take that little attitude with you when you move to N. Korea you scum suckin’ pigfart!

  • don’tuwishunew

    Lol, I saw NIN as an opening band three times for Jesus and Mary Chain the first time they ever played Guess it was 89 or 90 saw them in Atlanta Chatanooga and Memphis They were my girlfriend at the time’s favorite band (Jesus and Mary Chain) after that NIN was one of her and my favorite’s. They do put on a great show. Oh and if anyone wants to check it was at The Roxy in Atlanta………

  • Mike

    “Yes because saying ‘you suck cock’ is really the most intelligent thing anyone could say…”

    It is because anybody listening to NIN can’t comprehend anything more complex than that.

  • Autumn

    Nine Inch Nails rocks.
    Plain and simple.
    To all who are making ridiculous statements (for example, the one Mike made above), if you don’t like them, don’t listen to them. You missed a phenomenal show this year. I am guessing that Mike doesn’t realize doctors, lawyers, professors, scientists, and accountants are NIN fans. I’m pretty sure that most can comprehend way more than Mike can ever can imagine.
    Nine Inch Nails has a very diverse fanbase…..perhaps a few people need to research a bit more before attempting rude remarks towards a band and a fanbase they apparently know nothing about.

  • Joe Dirt

    This tour was incredible. Ticket prices do seem high now a days and that’s why I feel Nine Inch Nails tries so hard to make it worth the $. I saw them in Grand Rapids this year and the sound quality was excellent, and the light show was absolutely amazing. They WANT you to feel you got your money’s worth.

    All around great show. NIN’s fan base has probably diminished a little bit from the hey- day of closer but the new material is great and the band still kicks major ass live.

    And yes. The economy definately has an effect on ticket sales.

  • Draco Firedong

    Dude. I was sitting like right next to you, man. The show was sick. I had never heard Trent sound that good in my life. I was expecting the place to be packed, but oh well. One thing that annoyed me though was that the show itself started too late, and the japanese band was quite a pain to listen to.

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  • boo

    well just wanted to throw in my thoughts!
    On this recent tour nin has just sold out manchester arena england in less than an hour!!
    sometimes there is more than meets the eye…but i admire trent for making his decision to disappear for a while because he realises it will not last forever! He’s so different from the young gut of twenty years ago!

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  • Dick

    Their show in Worcester,MA a few months later was sold out (months in advance), almost 11.000 people.

    Same with tomorrow’s NIN/JA show in MA, around 10.000 tickets sold.

    It might be a “deep America” thing.

  • I believe the fairly poor attendance was due to the economic factors people have listed above (the Better-Half and myself will only go to arena-sized/priced shows for our “top” bands these days – it’s simply far too expensive to see that many) as well as piss-pour weather that evening that dumped several inches of show in-between entering and leaving the show. It took us double the amount of time to drive home. But this tour was so bleeding-edge (the *ONLY* band that I’d say even comes close would be U2, and even they are pretty far off in terms of stageshow – it’ll be years before a band approaches what NIN came up with for that tour) that we screwed the budget and saw 4 shows on the US leg.

    …and I’ll agree to a point that yes, this isn’t 1995 and NIN isn’t riding the wave of “Closer”. But I just saw them last night co-headlining with Jane’s Addiction @ The Post-Gazette Pavilion outside of Pittsburgh, PA which is one of the largest attendance Amphitheaters I’ve ever seen a concert at: 23,000 – 7,070 seats in the pavilion and 16,000 for lawn seating. Even with the lousy economy it as a near-sellout and a good amount of the audience left in-between NIN and Jane’s Addiction: about 1/4th is my estimation. That plus the fact that they’ve been touring pretty consistently since the fall of 2005 shows that there is indeed an audience out there – they simply wouldn’t tour if it wasn’t economically feasible.