As leader (singer/songwriter) of Nine Inch Nails, Reznor not only garnered success early in his career, but managed to stay ahead of the curve as decades passed. Where others in the past have neither understood nor embraced technology (i.e. Metallica's Lars Ulrich suing Napster in 2000), Reznor uses it to his advantage at any ample opportunity.
Today, he writes, records, produces and markets his music on his terms. This process always involves a computer, the Internet or both.
His music has always and continues to shine light on the ugly aspects of human existence. Common themes are broken love, betrayal, lost faith and drug addiction.
His most prolific work to date is "Year Zero," a concept album taking place 15 years in the future, where a citizen in the dystopic nightmare finds solace in various heartwarming and destructive human characteristics. Reznor said rap drum beats from classic hip hop artists inspired his compositions on this album, a new direction for Reznor and mainstream rock (quite possibly a new form of "rap rock," or more appropriately titled "rock rap").
Born: May 17, 1965 in Mercer, Pennsylvania
Years active: 1988-present
Pretty Hate Machine (1989)
The Downward Spiral (1994)
The Fragile (1999)
With Teeth (2005)
Year Zero (2007)
The Slip (2008)
-Places a number on all his releases after the term "Halo," which includes singles, live performances and video releases
-First major artist to release songs online in Garage Band format for fans to remix (2005)
-First to attempt to release catalog of music online for free, including in Garage Band format (2007)
-First album with color change CD label (Year Zero, 2007)
-Purposefully placed USB drives with tracks from "Year Zero" in bathroom stalls at concerts prior to its release for fans to share on the Internet
-Released formal LP album online for free download (The Slip, 2008)
-Maynard James Keenan (Tool, A Perfect Circle)
-Zach de la Rocha (Rage Against the Machine)
He wished to bring electronic music into the mainstream, but instead of what had been done with it in the past, he wanted to give it feeling and danger. He succeeded, if naively, with his first release under the name "Nine Inch Nails", Pretty Hate Machine in 1989.
He proved he could outdo himself with an 8-song EP stopgap "Broken" between his first release and his next. "Broken" was a solid expression of passion and fury. One of his best moments.
He followed up with "Fixed", an EP with remixes of "Broken" Songs.
In 1994, Trent broke into the mainstream with the titanic success of "The Downward Spiral". It contained his most commercially famous songs, the infamous "Closer" and "Hurt", which was later beautifully covered by Johnny Cash. "The Downward Spiral" was spun off with several remix EPs, including the extremely popular "Further Down the Spiral" and the dreaded by parents "Closer to God".
Trent and NIN (Nine Inch Nails) spent a terribly long time touring "The Downward Spiral" and afterwards, Trent had no idea what to do. This allegedly led to alcohol and coaine abuse. He got into rehab and was soon producing the LONG-AWAITED "The Fragile". When it finally came out in 1999, it was met with extreme love by most fans but with loathing by critics who said he was "losing his touch". He effectively said "FUCK YOU" to these people with the huge success of "The Fragile".
Trent fell again into the downward spiral of alcohol addiction after a full two tours of "The Fragile". He got his shit together long enough to make "With Teeth", his newest album, set to release on May 3rd, 2005.
Trent Reznor's music has saved my life several times. I owe my life to "The Fragile", which I listened to whenever I felt like I couldn't go on.
Trent is a prodigy in music, as he can play and he writes ALL the parts for ALL the instruments. He records all his music and mixes. No live studio recordings. The only thing he has trouble playing is the drumkit, which he can just bust out insane rhythms on a drum synth.
keith-it's "nine inch nails"
me-like hell it is!