The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust!

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The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust!
Saul Williams - The Inevitable Rise And Liberation Of NiggyTardust! Cover.jpg
Studio album by Saul Williams
Released November 1, 2007
Genre Industrial hip hop, industrial rock
Length 60:44 (original digital release)
71:46 (physical release w/bonus tracks)
Label The FADER (U.S.) / Wichita Recordings (U.K.) & Sony/Red (Distribution)
Producer Trent Reznor
Saul Williams chronology
Saul Williams
(2004)Saul Williams2004
The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust!
Volcanic Sunlight
(2011)Volcanic Sunlight2011
Singles from The Inevitable Rise And Liberation Of NiggyTardust
  1. "Sunday Bloody Sunday"
    Released: January 15, 2008

The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust! is the third album by Saul Williams, released on November 1, 2007.[1] Williams worked closely with Trent Reznor on the album. The title of the album is a reference to David Bowie's 1972 album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. Many of the album's lyrics were adapted from poetry in Williams' 2006 book The Dead Emcee Scrolls: The Lost Teachings of Hip-Hop.


The album was available for purchase or free download at The website allowed users to pay $5 to support the artist and be given the choice of downloading a 192kbit/s MP3 version, 320kbit/s MP3 version or lossless FLAC version.[2] Digital distribution of the album is provided by Musicane. Reznor publicised the album on the Nine Inch Nails website and mailing list, saying that "Saul's not the household name that Radiohead is" and urging fans to support him.[3] This was a reference to Radiohead's In Rainbows, which was released in October on the band's own website with customers choosing how much they want to pay for the album. The free option has since been removed, with a message on the website claiming their intention had always been to remove it after 100,000 free downloads of the album.[4]

Those who download the album directly from the site for free receive all 15 tracks, a jpeg of the album's cover, and the album booklet/lyric sheets in PDF. Additionally, the lyrics for each track are embedded using ID3 tags, allowing for their viewing in supported media players.

It was announced at that, as of January 2, 2008, two months since its release, 154,449 people had downloaded NiggyTardust. Of that number, 28,322 people chose to pay the asked price of $5 USD ($141,610 USD Total). In comparison, Saul's self-titled album has sold 30,000 copies since its release in 2004.[5]

A physical release of the album was released on July 8, 2008. It contained five bonus tracks.[6]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4.5/5 stars [2]
Art Nouveau(favorable) [3]
The A.V. Club(B+) [4]
Robert Christgau(1-star Honorable Mention) [5]
Pitchfork Media(7.3/10) [6]
Rolling Stone3/5 stars [7]

The album received positive reviews.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks were written by Saul Williams and Trent Reznor, except where noted.

  1. "Black History Month" (Saul Williams, Trent Reznor, Thavius Beck) – 3:15
  2. "Convict Colony" (Saul Williams, Trent Reznor, CX KiDTRONiK) – 3:24
  3. "Tr(n)igger" – 3:54
  4. "Sunday Bloody Sunday" (U2) – 4:05
  5. "Break" – 3:18
  6. "NiggyTardust" (Williams, Reznor, CX KiDTRONiK) – 3:40
  7. "DNA" (Williams, Reznor, Thavius Beck, Isaiah "Ikey" Owens) – 4:02
  8. "WTF!" (Williams, Reznor, CX KiDTRONiK) – 5:29
  9. "Scared Money" – 3:48
  10. "Raw" – 2:50
  11. "Skin of a Drum" – 3:55
  12. "No One Ever Does" – 3:14
  13. "Banged and Blown Through" – 3:43
  14. "Raised to be Lowered" (Williams, Reznor, CX KiDTRONiK) – 5:22
  15. "The Ritual" – 5:20

Bonus tracks[edit]

  1. "Pedagogue of Young Gods" – 3:18
  2. "World on Wheels" – 1:27
  3. "Can't Hide Love" (Earth, Wind & Fire) – 2:27
  4. "Gunshots by Computer" – 1:44 (originally on Y34RZ3R0R3M1X3D)
  5. "List of Demands (Reparations)" – 3:18 (originally appeared on Saul Williams)

The track "Sunday Bloody Sunday" was released as a single in early 2008.


Literary allusions[edit]

Album art[edit]

Along with all fifteen songs, the album comes with a PDF file that contains the lyrics, photos, and thanks just like on a physical album's inner sleeve. After two pages of thanks, there is a near blank page that at the bottom right hand corner reads "Amethyst RockStar (Am I this RockStar?)" This is a reference to Williams's first album Amethyst Rock Star.


  • Saul Williams – vocals, programming
  • Trent Reznor – programming, production, backing vocals on "Break" and "WTF!"
  • Atticus Ross – additional programming
  • Brian Gardner – mastering
  • Alan Moulder – mixing
  • Thavius Beck – production and programming on "Black History Month" and "DNA"
  • CX KiDTRONiK – production, programming, backing vocals on "Black History Month" and "NiggyTardust"
  • Isaiah "Ikey" Owens – keyboards on "DNA"
  • Xuly Azaro – backing vocals on "Scared Money"
  • Maryam Nalo Blacksher – viola on "Banged and Blown Through"
  • Gingger Shankar – double violin on "Banged and Blown Through"
  • Persia White – backing vocals on "Skin of a Drum"



  1. ^ Saul Williams: website. Retrieved on January 26, 2008. Archived October 27, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ Download info: website. Retrieved on January 26, 2008. Archived October 27, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Reznor, Trent (2007-10-25). "NiggyTardust!". The official Nine Inch Nails website. Retrieved 2007-10-29. 
  4. ^ Download info: website Archived January 11, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Download info Archived January 7, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.: website. Retrieved on January 26, 2008.
  6. ^ MVRemix, [1], MVRemix Urban, May 23, 2008, Retrieved May 28, 2008.

External links[edit]