Convict Colony

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"Convict Colony"
Album: The Inevitable Rise And Liberation Of NiggyTardust!
Length: 3:24
Versions: Convict Colony
Live: N/A
"Convict Colony" was produced and co-composed by Trent Reznor for Saul Williams' third studio album, The Inevitable Rise And Liberation Of NiggyTardust!. In 2017, CX Kidtronik revealed on his Instagram that, after the album was released, he and Williams found out that the drum beats in this song were performed by Dave Grohl.[1]

Saul Williams on "Convict Colony"

"This was the first collaborative effort between Trent and I. He sent a cd of 14 tracks to my hotel in Sydney as I was there doing 5 nights of poetry at the Opera House as part of the Sydney Arts Festival. When I first listened to the tracks I didn't like any of them (Trent doesn't know this. Hi Trent:). I didn't dislike them, but nothing hit me over the head. I felt like I could tell if there was something he wrote with me in mind or something that was left over from his previous work. I thought all of the tracks needed some serious "pimp my ride" sort of hacking in order for them to appeal to my musical sensibility. The people at will probably burn me for this, but I remember listening to that cd for the first time and thinking "oh, how cute". Obviously the tracks grew on me, and in me, in major ways, but it did take a minute. I had a lot of openning up to do. And that's what I was looking forward to doing in this collaboration.... The beat that I jacked for Convict came from about the 10th track. I wasn't traveling with my equipment and my idea for the track was to confusing to explain to CX so I kept my musical idea in my head and started writing the lyrics. Obviously, Australia is a Convict Colony. In my estimation so is the US and few other "allies". I was mad at the lack of Aboriginal people I was seeing out and about Sydney. The projects in RedFern looked exactly like the projects I grew up around, with people getting high or drunk on the stairwells, hanging clothes to dry out the window etc. I even had a bunch Aboriginal kids walk up to me and tell me excitedly that they were Niggers too. I wanted to write something they could scream at the top of their lungs. The synth line I did myself at home which Trent later retouched before we started replacing sounds with Cazoos. Drumwise, there wasn't as much movement or complexity in my original demo. Trent and Atticus taught me and CX some secrets. It was cool how they would show us how we could finesse it, then sit back and let us do it. Very ninja-ish."

Trent Reznor on "Convict Colony"

"One of the first tracks we worked on together. We began the process of experimenting together by me giving him I think 10 tracks or so of stuff I had around. Some of it was new, some were orphans from various other projects and none of it was written with Saul in mind - I was just fishing around to see if anything inspired Saul. He came back with the intro drums from a demo I gave him (I think from a Tapeworm track) chopped up into the basics of what you now hear. It was so much better than what I gave him and unexpected - I was sold on the idea of pursuing the relationship and off we went."

Song Credits

  • Music by Trent Reznor (Leaving Hope), Saul Williams (Punk Rock of Gibraltar/EMI) and CX KiDTRONiK (Boykins Bar B Que Music/SESAC)
  • Words by Saul Williams (Punk Rock of Gibraltar/EMI)
  • Vox: Saul Williams




Convict Colony

This version is heard on The Inevitable Rise And Liberation Of NiggyTardust!.


    I was born in a convict colony. And I was torn from the land that mothered me.
    Mother, may I? She said, “Yes, you may”. Well, today I… (Declare). I said, right here, today!
    You’re a Convict Colony if you’re running from the sun! You’re a Convict Colony!
    A Convict Colony! And you don’t really want it.
    I was birthed from the Earth. Fought my way to this day. Now, I’m grown.
    Truth be told. I’ll be here, ‘til you’re gone.
    You’re a Convict Colony if you’re running from the sun!
    You’re a Convict Colony if you’re reaching for your gun!
    You’re a Convict Colony if you’re running from the sun!
    You’re a Convict Colony!
    A Convict Colony!
    And you don’t really want it.

External Links

Coming soon.

This page was last modified on 14 July 2018, at 13:50. This page has been accessed 12,617 times.