Tuesday, March 17, 2020

[Roll Your Own Life] The Music That Shaped Me (Part 12)

Nine Inch Nails - Pretty Hate Machine (1989)

Again, a little late to the party, I was first introduced to Nine Inch Nails just after I'd left my hometown and gone off to University to study graphic design/animation/illustration. The end of my art college time "up north" was turbulent to say the least, and moving away, being away from home, and the whole "trying to fit in" thing isn't something I do naturally. I hid in my tiny box room of the house I'd found for student accommodation and evenings were mostly spent listening to the radio. 

This must have been around 1992ish as I have this memory of hanging around in Gaz' accommodation listening to the noise that was Ministry (Psalm 69 had just come out and the radio was playing Jesus Built My Hotrod a lot) and thinking "this is really cool". This lead to him saying that I should listen to Nine Inch Nails

Pretty Hate Machine quickly became my favourite music choice for literally months and months, with the haunting Something I Can Never Have becoming my personal anthem in my angsty days. 

I went out and bought Fixed, before I'd even heard Broken (yeah, that can be confusing, but they didn't have Broken in stock at the store), and was right there on release day when The Downward Spiral was released in 94. 

My love of Nine Inch Nails has grown as their music has evolved. I love all of it, and would happily listen to nothing but NIN and Trent Reznor's creations. Trent Reznor is a god in my books, and along with David Lynch, is a constant inspiration to do and create whatever you want - and not worry about it being liked or successful. There will always be people for whom it resonates, and has a deep emotional meaning.

Pretty Hate Machine is not my favourite NIN album, but it is the one that opened the door for me becoming an obsessive fanboy, and I still love it. I managed to see Nine Inch Nails at Nottingham Arena in 2014, something I'd never imagined possible, and they still play tracks from Pretty Hate Machine (Terrible Lie, and they finished off with Head Like A Hole before their encores). 

Amazing gig, and not the last time Nine Inch Nails will appear in my 20 Albums that shaped me...

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