Reznor and musical collaborator Atticus Ross explained on NIN.com that during the global health crisis, their emotions have run the gamut between feeling "there may be hope at times to utter despair," and that the situation helped them "appreciate the power and need for connection." And so, the pair "decided to burn the midnight oil" to finish the the records, and are offering up the new tunes to get us through these tough times.
"Ghosts V: Together is for when things seem like it might all be okay, and Ghosts VI: Locusts... well, you figure out," they added.
"Music has always had a way of making us feel a little less alone in the world... and hopefully it does for you, too," the musicians continued. "Remember, everyone is in this thing together and this too shall pass."
"Be smart and safe and take care of each other."
NIN released the instrumental Ghosts I-IV in March 2008, also for free. Lil Nas X famously sampled "34 Ghosts IV" for his hit "Old Town Road." The song earned Reznor and Ross not only a producing credit, but also a CMA Award in 2019.
Reznor has previously teased in recent interviews that he and Ross had been working on new Nine Inch Nails music, and that the two were hoping to hit the road again later in 2020. The band was also selected to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's class of 2020. The induction ceremony, originally scheduled for May, has since been postponed -- as have numerous tours and musical events -- due to the spread of COVID-19.