Band Review: Nine Inch Nails

Nine Inch Nails was an act I first remember being exposed to in the early 1990s, back when I was in high school. I distinctly remember, back in 1992, first hearing about NIN when MTV was playing the music video for “Wish.” As I was starting to gain more of an appreciation for “alternative” music at that point, the song instantly grabbed me. Then, as luck would have it, I saw part of the video for “Head Like A Hole” at a friend’s house a couple of months later; both the song and the video really left an impression on me.

In 1994, Nine Inch Nails released the song “Closer,” which, as we know, was a big hit for NIN. This song grabbed me as well. About a year later, during my second year of college, a classmate in the Radio-Television department brought in a copy of the Pretty Hate Machine album and played it. After hearing it, I knew I had to own it. I ended up getting a used copy of Pretty Hate Machine from a used CD store, and soon followed up with obtaining copies of Broken and Downward Spiral. Admittedly, I primarily only listened to the songs I was familiar with from those CDs.

While I was in college, I met the man who would later become my husband. He was into Nine Inch Nails and started introducing me to the songs on my CDs that I hadn’t been familiar with. He also introduced me to the Further Down the Spiral album. After we got married, we continued to follow Nine Inch Nails. In fact, we’re still following Trent Reznor.

I would have to say that my favorite Nine Inch Nails album would still have to be Pretty Hate Machine. The Fragile would have to come in second; Trent took quite a chance with it, both with the sound of the overall album, and the fact that it was double CD. Year Zero also took a chance in telling a story, making it a kind of “concept album.” With Teeth also has some good material on it. Unfortunately, I wasn’t quite as impressed with the Ghosts I – IV project.

As of this writing, Trent Reznor produced the score for the film, The Social Network; to me, one of the standout tracks on the soundtrack CD is Trent’s rendition of “In the Hall of the Mountain King.” Trent is also working on the score for the film, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.


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