Nine Inch Nails
"It's not like I'm a horribly depressed person trying to come across as
having a noose around my neck," says Trent Reznor, the sole member of
Nine Inch Nails. NIN's debut album, *Pretty Hate Machine*, is shot
through with angst-ridden sex, identity crises and religious doubt--but
Reznor's explanation is simple enough. "The music I always liked as a
kid was stuff I could burn out to and realize, 'Hey, someone *else* feels
that way, too.' So if someone can do that with my music, it's mission
Nine Inch Nails' sound is dominated by clanging synths and sardonic,
shrieking vocals. But Reznor stretches that industrial-strength noise
over a pop framework, and his harrowing but catchy music has taken the
college charts by storm.
Two years ago, Reznor moved from his hometown in rural Pennsylvania to
Cleveland. Unable to find band mates, Reznor, a classically trained
pianist, taught himself to play guitar and bass and recorded his demos at
a studio where he worked as a MIDI programmer. After signing a record
deal, he hooked up with a bevy of weighty producers including Adrian
Sherwood and Keith LeBlanc (Tackhead), Flood (Depeche Mode) and John
Fryer (Love and Rockets).
Reznor ascribes the desperate sound of his record to the fact that "it
wasn't the happiest time of my life." He loves to tell how he sent a
tape to his uncle, who was in the midst of interviewing for a secretary.
"This one girl was waiting for him to finish a meeting, and he gave her
the tape to listen to," says Reznor. "He came back, and she had left.
When he called her the next day, she said, 'I was listening to the tape,
and I realized I don't want to work for this company.' That's pretty
much what I was setting out to do."
Reznor admits to being fairly upbeat these days. "Who knows?" he
says. "Maybe there will be a *happy* album from Nine Inch Nails. I
doubt it, but you never know."
Rolling Stone 1990 - by Michael Azerrad
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is provided courtesy Keith Duemling and Tracy Thompson from the collection previously
located at SUS.