And All That Could Have Been (song)

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"And All That Could Have Been"
Album: Still
Length: 6:14
Tempo: 140 BPM
Versions: And All That Could Have Been
Live: Unperformed

"And All That Could Have Been" is the seventh track on Still, which was released with the Deluxe Edition CD version of And All That Could Have Been and was available for mail-order with the purchase of the DVD version and is currently available for order through nin.com. The song is considered an outtake from The Fragile, much like "The Great Collapse" from Things Falling Apart.

It may be one of NIN's most complex songs regarding time signature, as the verses are in 7/4, the choruses in 4/4, and part of the bridge in 6/8.

"AATCHB" features guitar distortion and the layering of multiple guitar effects often found in songs of the "Shoegaze" subgenre—bands such as My Bloody Valentine (with whom NIN's usual mixer, Alan Moulder, worked) and The Jesus and Mary Chain (who NIN opened for back in 1989).

Song Credits

Appearances

Halos

  • And All That Could Have Been (Deluxe Edition)
  • Still

Seeds

Promotional

  • And All That Could Have Been. Excerpts [1]
  • And All That Could Have Been Snippets [2]

Versions

And All That Could Have Been

This is the only available version. Softly falling rain, continued from the end of "The Day the World Went Away," begins the song, soon joined by quiet atmospheric synthesizers playing sustained, ascending notes. These lead into the first verse, a still-quiet 7/4 combination of soft electric guitars and Reznor's melodic vocals. The verse gives way to a quiet, instrumental bridge where bass guitar and piano join in, playing the melody and chord sequence from the climax of "The Great Below" in 4/4. A second verse, again in 7/4, interrupts this bridge with a return to the verse guitars, vocals, and icy percussion loops. After reaching into his higher vocal range for the second half of this verse, Reznor sings the 4/4 chorus in a lower, more up-front and talkative voice, backed by a new guitar riff, picked bass, and drum loops focal on the toms. A second bridge follows, introduced by a solitary delayed electric guitar riff, then louder layers of strumming guitar and bass with a new lead melody in 6/8, then a return to the 7/4 verse guitar riff atmospheres, during which Reznor quietly sings sparse words, building in volume and emotion until the words "... could have been" lead into an instrumental reiteration of the chorus. After singing a different incarnation of the chorus, Reznor's vocals give way to a higher-register return of the melody from the very first 4/4 bridge of the song beneath the chorus, with all instruments stopping at the end of the final bar, leaving a distant echo that quickly fades away.

Live

"And All That Could Have Been" has never been played live. Justin Meldal-Johnsen confirmed via Twitter that it was rehearsed for the Wave Goodbye Tour

Lyrics

    Breeze still carries the sound
    Maybe I'll disappear
    Tracks will fade in the snow
    You won't find me here
    
    Ice is starting to form
    Ending what had begun
    I am locked in my head
    With what I've done
    I know you tried to rescue me
    Didn't let anyone get in
    Left with a trace of all that was
    And all that could have been
    
    Please
    Take this
    And run far away
    Far away from me
    I am
    Tainted
    The two of us
    Were never meant to be
    All these
    Pieces
    And promises and left behinds
    If only I could see
    In my
    Nothing
    You meant everything
    Everything to me
    Gone fading everything
    And all that could have been
    
    Please
    Take this
    And run far away
    Far as you can see
    I am
    Tainted
    And happiness and peace of mind
    Were never meant for me
    All these
    Pieces
    And promises and left behinds
    If only I could see
    In my
    Nothing
    You meant everything
    Everything to me
This page was last modified on 4 October 2013, at 15:08. This page has been accessed 60,620 times.