Because I complained about it months ago in my Website Architecture post, I thought I’d reanalyze Nine Inch Nails’ website. They’ve quietly been upgrading it and the look changed within the past week.
The first thing that’s obvious is that the color hasn’t changed. It’s still black, black, and black, with a hint of gray. The black has a little texture to it. I suppose I couldn’t expect the band to go all pink on me, although with Trent Reznor’s habit of overturning the status quo, I’m sure he’d be able to make pink one tough, kick-your-ass color.
I can live with the color because there have been improvements. For one, there is no official you-have-to-pay-for-it fan club, which means there’s no need to tell people what the fans get versus what everyone else gets. The home page is uncluttered and the links are easy to read. When you click on a link, you get what you expect. It also appears that when you leave the home page, most of the other pages have an obvious link back to home, so you can do that whole click your ruby slippers thing I mentioned before.
The biggest improvement to the site, as far as I’m concerned, is that there is now an easy way to read past blog posts. They won’t look like the post on the front page, but the main text of most past posts is available through NIN’s news feed. There are a variety of NIN feeds (list found here), so between the lot of them, you should be able to keep reasonably informed, even if you’re a n00b, like I was.
As for the availability of music, NIN has links within the site for the past four albums. The last three have dedicated pages. The one prior to these, “With Teeth,” can be found under Merchandise. This is a good start as far as building a discography, but it’s still a little lacking. What I’d like to see, even if the NIN website can’t hawk past albums, is a full list of all the band has produced. Yeah, I know, I can get this elsewhere on the web, but I’d really like to see it with the NIN website. To make the official NIN discography stand apart from those already available, I’d like to see Trent Reznor write some history on each album, what he was thinking when he wrote the songs, what interesting things happened during recording, what his inspiration was for particular songs, why he organized the songs the way he did on the albums, etc. etc.
All in all, the NIN website is moving in the right direction and that’s a good thing.