The Fragile

Release date
21 Sep 1999
Running length
23 tracks
Running time


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    Track     Duration Listeners
1 Somewhat Damaged 4:31 177,674
2 The Day the World Went Away 4:33 251,543
3 The Frail 1:41 212,406
4 The Wretched 5:24 202,393
5 We're In This Together 7:17 229,826
6 The Fragile 5:12 211,674
7 Just Like You Imagined 3:50 209,639
8 Even Deeper 5:48 154,987
9 Pilgrimage 3:32 135,432
10 No, You Don't 3:36 128,986
11 La Mer 4:38 157,018
12 The Great Below 5:17 183,112
1 The Way Out Is Through 4:16 135,460
2 Into the Void 4:48 170,983
3 Where Is Everybody? 5:40 119,963
4 The Mark Has Been Made 5:15 158,070
5 Please 3:31 132,836
6 Starfuckers, Inc. 4:59 154,008
7 Complication 2:31 135,500
8 I'm Looking Forward to Joining You, Finally 4:13 107,675
9 The Big Come Down 4:13 132,934
10 Underneath It All 2:46 120,671
11 Ripe (With Decay) 6:35 108,868

About this album

The Fragile (also known as Halo 14) is a concept double album by American Industrial rock act Nine Inch Nails, released in 1999 on Reznor’s Nothing Records. The album is Nine Inch Nails’ fourth major label release and the fourteenth halo. The album continues the plot of The Downward Spiral, despite the complete change in sound and style of the album. Instead of heavily distorted instruments, and gritty industrial sounds, the album relies much more on soundscapes, electronic beats, ambient noise, and heavy metal-laden guitar, such as in the single “Starfuckers, Inc.” Trent Reznor describes the album’s plot and story as “a theme of things falling apart.” Reznor has also said the album is bleaker than The Downward Spiral, despite the more aggressive, depressing tone of that album. Many songs on the album borrow bass, guitar, and keyboard lines from other songs on the album; most notably “The Frail” piano becoming “The Fragile” guitar and the bassline used in “La Mer” reappearing in “Into the Void”.

The album was not as much of a commercial success as The Downward Spiral, most likely accredited to Interscope Records’ lack of promotion of the album, and the lack of a stand-out single. Despite a strong start at #1 on the Billboard Top 10, the album quickly slipped out of the Billboard Top 10 only a week after its release, and Reznor was forced to provide funding for the subsequent North American tour out of his own pocket. The cover artwork was designed by David Carson.

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  • Grycho

    Actually, I think I'd like to take back that "concept" remark. I've been going through a horrible identity crisis for a few years now, and I never realized just how perfectly the theme of this album fits with what I'm going through until now. It speaks to me a lot more personally than The Downward Spiral. Hell, it speaks more personally to me than any other album I've ever heard in this regard. Fuck, man.

    18 Jul 6:08pm Reply
  • PostHuman96

    I almost forgot how good this was, especially the second disc

    23 Jun 10:06pm Reply
  • Grycho

    WHY HAS IT TAKEN ME THIS LONG TO FINALLY GIVE THIS ALBUM A LISTEN HOLY SHIT! Seriously, in terms of sound (as opposed to concept which TDS wins obviously) this is my absolute favorite NIN album on my first listen alone!

    23 May 7:26pm Reply
  • Gaffes

    As far as I'm concerned it's not so easy to get into this album, probably due to its length and structure, but when you do, it becomes one of the greatest albums ever produced.

    26 Apr 2:51pm Reply
  • fabzatron

    It took me so long to actually be able to appreciate it but goddamn this album is so wonderful.

    7 Apr 4:16am Reply
  • Io8b

    I still cannot believe this album exists - it's too perfect, from the first song to the last. It's so inspiring to know that there are people out there in the world that have the capability, the determination, and the vision to craft something as special as The Fragile.

    29 Mar 5:35pm Reply
  • Infernatic

    Amazing album. Too bad Starfuckers is like the worst thing Trent has ever done, ever.

    22 Mar 2:34pm Reply
  • Gyoshimaru

    too long

    1 Mar 1:12am Reply
  • mozzareIIa

    best album evaa

    17 Feb 3:53am Reply
  • Tony--

    Not my favorite NIN album, but I appreciate the efford and production that has been made.

    8 Dec 2013 Reply
  • Juliossauro

    Definitely my favorite. Such an introspective journey.

    10 Oct 2013 Reply
  • Mechayoshi

    Left > Right. Although they're both pretty strong.

    21 Sep 2013 Reply
  • glsjawtomatica

    Trent's magnum opus

    3 Sep 2013 Reply
  • dAdriano


    29 Aug 2013 Reply
  • sunheadbowed

    "Without a doubt, one of the greatest albums ever recorded" Not even close to Reznor's best album, by his own admission.

    27 Aug 2013 Reply
  • porcelain_tree

    Favorite NIN album. It flows from one highlight to another. The percussion is magnificent.

    1 Jul 2013 Reply
  • tishaneverminds

    Their best album indeed.

    19 Jun 2013 Reply
  • fozzi26

    Am I the only one who thinks Right is disc 1 and Left is disc 2. Even though they are traditionally seen the other way around? Just seems to flow better that way?

    17 Mar 2013 Reply
  • My_Sharona

    Orgasmic from start to finish <3

    26 Feb 2013 Reply
  • Freshed_Fisch


    7 Feb 2013 Reply
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