Trent Reznor Says Kanye West and The Weeknd ‘Ripped Off’ Nine Inch Nails’ Live Shows

The evidence is compelling.

Trent Reznor Kanye West The Weeknd Promo
Getty Images

Trent Reznor may have just instigated a new musical beef, and this one crosses genres. 

The Nine Inch Nails mastermind accused rap star Kanye West and R&B singer The Weeknd of ripping off his band’s live shows in this interview with BBC Radio 6 Music. 

“I remember us watching a string of bands on Coachella from the comfort of our couch. And every band has a video playing behind them. And every band is synced up with a convenient, polite lighting package.” 

“And I saw Kanye West blatantly rip off–and the Weeknd rip off– our tours production-wise, which I’ll say without any hesitation. And they know.”

The Coachella performance Reznor could be referring to, above, does bear a resemblance to this earlier Nine Inch Nails production designed by visual artist Rob Sheridan, who has served as art director for multiple NIN tours. 

Later in the BBC interview, Reznor cited ’80s rock influences as inspiration for the pared down production of NIN’s current Cold and Black Infinite tour, which kicks off this September in support of Bad Witch. 

“When I think back to the Cure, when I saw them for the first time in the mid-’80s, or Jesus and Mary Chain when we opened for them, and all I remember of that was smoke, maybe a color, a little bit of someone’s hair, and real, real loud guitars.”

He continued, “That’s exciting and I don’t see that happening much. So we went the opposite of the arms race we had been in of immersive, technological-based production…. It’s music being played somewhat sloppily with an element of danger and uncertainty and unpredictability.”

Reactions to Reznor’s allegations have been mixed.

It’s not the first time Reznor has taken a shot at Yeezy. In a recent interview with The Guardian, he praised West’s past work but said that his most recent album, Ye, “sucked.”

“The guy’s lost his fucking mind… His record sucked, and that’s it. He has made great shit; he’s not in a great place right now.”

Your move, Kanye. 

h/t: Pitchfork