People I Saw at the Nine Inch Nails Show, Part One

So the Nine Inch Nails show last Friday was good. Great. Amazing. Really, I can’t say enough good things about it, so I’ll just refer you to someone else’s version of the same sentiment and leave it at that.

But the other great part of it, the part I didn’t anticipate? The people. My god, the people! You know that feeling when you’re walking toward a show, and you start recognizing your crowd as you get within a couple of blocks? The area around Key Arena was thick with it – a thousand men in black hoodies, battered 20-year-old NIN tour shirts worn with reverence, and so many people summoning their 1994 selves.

So while I loved the show – I loved the show! – the part that really turned my heart was the people watching. Everyone was having a stellar night.

I was so struck I came straight home (after cocktails, I mean) and drew. Here’s the first installment of two of People of Nine Inch Nails. (I can’t call it Nine Inch Nails Parking Lot, as I suspect a majority of us took the bus to get there.)

nin 1This is the first person I saw. Put me immediately at ease. Sometimes it’s nice to see someone and to have a good idea of about half of the contents of their bookshelves. Here, I see much Neil Gaiman, some obscure philosophy, and the earlier works of Anne Rice. Fine company in a diner for sure.

nin 2

Meet Pants of Feigned Regret. She sat in front of us and got up at least four times during the show. (I wanted to tell her that the generous wafts of pot smoke blowing through the arena were a pretty good indicator that she could just do her drugs wherever she wanted, and we really didn’t care.) But each departure was an elaborately choreographed sequence of pants adjusting, gripping, and wrangling, paired with a big apologetic grin. Fascinating, and fascinatingly consistent every time.

nin 5I saw about 17 of this person. I like every iteration of her. She was at Circus Cats last year when I went and saw them, although she looked like this that night:

circus catsThere is a very real possibility that I am turning into this person, or that I already am her. I’m down with that.

nin 3This woman is my hero. She stood in the aisle and pumped her fists for a good two straight hours, never flagging, never pausing for so much as a sip of beer. This woman had the fucking night of her life, and I was so happy to glance down at her now and then and see her, still living it up.

nin 4This is your queen. Bow down.

More to come Friday or Saturday, depending on how well I’m able to work a Wacom after stuffing all available gut space with potatoes and potato-based dishes.