OK this is pretty cool. A new Nine Inch Nails album is coming out pretty soon, and to promote it, a series of weird-ass web sites have popped up in relation to it, such as this one (click and drag), this one, and this one. There is a whole story emerging out of it, involving terrorism and drugs and corrupt governments and all that good stuff.
An image that recurs on these sites is the following:
A hand reaching down from the sky, or something.
Then, recently, an mp3 file appeared on the internet. Apparently, it was found on an abandoned USB drive in a bathroom at a NIN show. The file contained a brand new NIN track, along with some static at the end. The song can currently be heard here, but who knows for how long.
But the weird, and very cool, thing is that when you run the file through a computer program that allows you to see the "spectrum" of the static, you see this:
The same hand. Creepy.
Obviously this is all a marketing ploy, designed to draw attention to the new album. The web sites are created by a marketing company, and the mp3 wasn't "leaked" at all; it was made to be found. But if an artist wants to draw attention to their work, this is the way to do it. Getting people involved and entertained by using the power of the internet to spread ideas that no individual could figure out (I'd never think to visualize the static like that). This couldn't have happened a few years ago. I didn't even know a new NIN album was on the horizon, but now I'm kinda excited about it, so the ploy is working. Good job, Trent.
As a side note, this isn't the first time a musician has hidden images in sounds. Apparently Aphex Twin did this a while ago:
It's his own face. Obviously. The dude plasters his creepy face on everything he does, even the music itself. It would be annoying if the music wasn't so wonderful.
Anyway, just thought I'd share.