Song Review: Matt Lange Nails Remix of NIN’s “Discipline” [Free Download]

Matt Lange has released a dark, downtempo, and altogether incredible remix of Nine Inch Nails‘s “Discipline.” If you’re a fan of NIN, and Lange’s signature broody, moody production style, this is something you can’t miss. Luckily for you, it’s a free download from his Soundcloud page.

The original is a straightforward rock song off the band’s 2008 album The Slip, propelled by a catchy riff and drum beat. Under Lange’s touch, the song is transformed into a subtle, melancholy meditation that builds from a spare and etherial start into an aggressive and defiant climax, in a fitting tribute to a band known similar song structures. The production is stunning – and of the caliber you’d expect from this talented Anjunabeats producer. The overall sound recalls his Counterstrike Global Offensive music kit, which he recently uploaded to his Soundcloud page.

With his “Discipline” remix, Lange integrates all of the elements that make NIN great – from the overall depressed-yet-determined mood to the glitchy effects – with skill, style, and creativity, while making the production uniquely his own. I was certifiably obsessed with Nine Inch Nails for a good four years, so I feel pretty qualified in saying that this is a high-quality remix that pays tribute to the band in a very faithful way.

What really makes it stand out, though, is the way it carefully builds to a powerful climax in the tradition of the best of NIN songs (see: “Somewhat Damaged,” “Just Like You Imagined,” and “The Becoming“). The high dynamic range lures us closer to the speakers during the quiet moments, forcing us to listen closely as the song gathers strength like a tropical storm. At 4:25, that hurricane makes landfall when Lange drops on us a metal-inspired, deliciously overcrompressed glitch riff that could have been taken straight from “The Great Destroyer” (or “Demon Seed,” or…). Lange rides out the fully unleashed tapestry of sound he’s built while weaving in yet more noise, tension, and glitch, until there’s just nowhere else to go, and the song cuts out. I love that he lets you go right at the point of most intensity, with no time for mental decompression. It’s a refreshing choice in the DJ mix-driven world of dance music that demands lengthy, sometimes lifeless, song intros and outros.

The track is released under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial Share-Alike license, meaning that you are free to remix or otherwise modify the track as long as you don’t sell it and you release the resulting work under an identical license. (You can thank Reznor for choosing to release The Slip under such a license in the first place.) It’s because of these terms that Matt can offer the song as a free download. I’ve embedded the file from SoundCloud above, but if you decide to download it, do head over to Matt’s page and give him a follow. And check out another of my favorite Matt Lange tracks below – his remix of Versa‘s “Illusion.”

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