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Nine Inch Nails九寸钉

地区: United States of America 美国
风格: 工业金属 Industrial Metal, 重金属 Heavy Metal, 另类金属 Alternative Metal, 工业摇滚 Industrial Rock
档案:
成立时间:1989 克里福兰 俄亥俄
风格划分:工业重金属、工业舞曲
 
工业音乐久远的历史过程中诞生过很多杰出的代表艺人、Ministry、Skinny Puppy、Front 242、KMFDM等等等等。但是,进入九十年代后,Nine Inch Nails一跃成为了最受欢迎的工业音乐艺人,这难免让人感到有点意外,某些乐评人在谈及这一现象不无嘲讽地说,“NIN只是工业音乐外表下的流行音乐,他从未做过真正的工业音乐”。而Marilyn Manson这样靠噱头、变态起家的工业新秀再次授人以柄,成为人们争论工业音乐前进还是倒退这一话题时的反方证据。
 
无论如何,1989年Nine Inch Nails发行的首张专辑《Pretty Hate Machine》到底还是为工业音乐挽回了一些颜面。单是它在排行榜上逗留数年之久这一记录,就足以证明一切了。专辑的音乐载体无一不是标准的工业味道,机械、冰冷、扭曲应有尽有。而事实上,它最成功的地方还是出色的流行感觉,一来拉近了一般乐迷对于工业音乐的距离感,二来增加了专辑的人情味、耐听性,双管齐下。专辑的歌词也尽量摆脱了工业音乐一贯的直白灰色甚至黑色的腔调,较多采用打油诗般的流畅语言婉转地表达同样极端的思想内容。
 
1994年,Nine Inch Nails终于推出了第二张专辑《The Downward Spiral》,该张专辑因明显带有的70年代前卫摇滚痕迹而被看作工业音乐的新概念专辑。NIN的核心人物Trent Reznor很熟练地在跨度巨大的两种摇滚风格之间找到了结合点,得到了另类/主流乐迷的极力推崇。
 
关于1999年专辑《The Fragile》的评价,显然走上了两个极端。单就整体制作水平来看,Trent Reznor明显是下了一番功夫的。这张双CD专辑中没有太多的亮点,而且显得不够凶猛,但它拥有更加深邃阴柔的工业音乐氛围,注重深层的心理感受,以至于专辑听起来有些生涩。对于这一变革,有人说是一种成熟,也有人数是一种无所适从的创作枯竭地表现。
 
工业音乐本身天生带有的局限性是不争的事实,鉴于此,我们宁可看到创新失败的尝试,也不愿永远停留在铁砧上锻造出来的昨天。
 
Nine Inch Nails were the most popular industrial group ever and were largely responsible for bringing the music to a mass audience. It isn't really accurate to call NIN a group; the only official member is singer/producer/multi-instrumentalist Trent Reznor, who always remained solely responsible for NIN's musical direction (he was, however, supported in concert by a regular backing band). Unlike the vast majority of industrial artists, Reznor wrote melodic, traditionally structured songs where lyrics were a focal point. His pop instincts not only made the harsh electronic beats of industrial music easier to digest, but also put a human face on a style that usually tried to sound as mechanical as possible. While Ministry crossed over to heavy metal audiences, NIN built up a large alternative rock fan base right around the time of Nirvana's mainstream breakthrough. As a result, Reznor became a genuine star and his notoriously dark, brooding persona and provocateur instincts made him a Jim Morrison-esque sex symbol for the '90s. A long period of inactivity and writer's block followed, which gave virtually every alternative metal band of the late '90s a chance to rip off elements of NIN's sound. By the time Reznor's five-year hiatus finally ended, he was still a popular figure but his commercial momentum had slowed somewhat.
 
Michael Trent Reznor was born May 17, 1965, in the small town of Mercer, PA; he went by his middle name to avoid confusion with his father, Michael. At age five, Reznor's parents divorced and he wound up being raised mostly by his maternal grandparents; even so, Reznor stated repeatedly that his childhood was mostly happy. He began playing the piano at age five, studying classical music, and later learned tenor sax and tuba in the school band; he also acted in musicals and became an avid Kiss fan. Reznor spent a year studying music and computers at Allegheny College, but dropped out after a year to pursue music full-time; he soon packed up and moved to Cleveland with high school friend Chris Vrenna. Around the same time, he was discovering new wave and assorted underground music; he was most fascinated with early industrial, since it offered an edgy, aggressive way to use electronic instruments. At age 19, he successfully auditioned to join an AOR band called the Innocent, which released one album, Livin' in the Streets (Reznor's picture does appear on the jacket). He quit the Innocent after just three months and subsequently gigged with local bands; he also worked in a keyboard store and as a janitor in the local Right Track recording studio. Eventually, he became a studio engineer, teaching himself various computer applications and working on his own material during off hours. In 1987, Reznor appeared in the Michael J. Fox/Joan Jett film Light of Day, where he played keyboards with a trio dubbed the Problems during a bar scene.
 
As Nine Inch Nails, Reznor began recording his own Ministry- and Skinny Puppy-influenced compositions in 1988, playing all the instruments himself. At first, he simply hoped to release a 12& single on a small European label, but when he sent demo tapes to around ten American labels, nearly every one offered him a deal. He wound up signing with TVT, which released NIN's debut album, Pretty Hate Machine, in 1989 (after having rejected an initial effort called Industrial Nation). Reznor quickly assembled a backing band and toured with Skinny Puppy for a short time, but soon tired of playing for strictly industrial artists. With a tighter outfit featuring Chris Vrenna on drums and Richard Patrick on guitar (plus several revolving-door keyboardists), he consciously chose to open for alt-rock acts (including, early on, the Jesus and Mary Chain and Peter Murphy), partly for the challenge of winning over fans who might not have liked industrial music. The strategy helped expand Nine Inch Nails' fan base substantially; the single &Down in It& got some airplay in dance clubs, reaching Billboard's dance and modern rock charts, and MTV later picked up on the video for the more rock-oriented &Head Like a Hole.& In 1991, after settling on keyboardist James Woolley, Nine Inch Nails became part of the inaugural Lollapalooza tour, which expanded their fan base by leaps and bounds. Pretty Hate Machine's momentum kept building slowly, and although it never climbed higher than number 75, it spent over two years on the album charts and eventually sold over a million copies — one of the first indie-label rock albums to do so.
 
TVT had a massive hit on their hands, and to ensure that Reznor would produce another one, they attempted to take control of the follow-up's creative direction. Enraged by the outside meddling, Reznor tried to secure a release from his contract, leading to a vicious court battle. His only recording outlets were side projects; in 1990, he co-wrote and sang on &Suck,& a track on Pigface's debut album, Gub, and also sang on the Al Jourgensen-led 1000 Homo DJs cover of Black Sabbath's &Supernaut.& (TVT ordered Reznor's vocals removed from the track, but Jourgensen actually just altered them slightly and said he'd re-recorded it.) Eventually, he was able to sign with Interscope, which helped him set up his own label, the Cleveland-based Nothing imprint. Reznor had been recording new material on the sly, and in 1992 Nothing released the EP Broken as well as a concurrent remix disc titled Fixed. Broken featured more (and heavier) guitars than Pretty Hate Machine, partly in response to NIN's live sound and partly as a sonic evocation of Reznor's boiling frustration in the wake of the legal wars; it also featured two bonus cuts, a version of &Suck& and the Adam Ant cover &(You're So) Physical,& a nod to Reznor's new wave roots. Despite many reviews characterizing the EP as a harrowing, difficult listen, Broken — supported by NIN's now-considerable fan base — debuted in the Top Ten and the first single/video, &Wish,& won a Grammy for Best Heavy Metal Performance. Reznor enhanced his reputation as a provocateur with a widely banned clip for &Happiness in Slavery,& which depicted S&M performance artist Bob Flanagan being torn apart by a machine; there was also a long-form clip for Broken that was never released commercially due to its graphic content (a torture victim is dismembered while viewing NIN videos).
 
Reznor moved to Los Angeles to craft the second full-length NIN album, assembling a studio in the house where actress Sharon Tate was murdered by Charles Manson's associates. The Downward Spiral was a highly ambitious work, a concept album indebted to progressive rock that featured the most detailed, layered studio craft of any NIN release yet. Hugely anticipated, the album debuted at number two and became one of the bleakest multi-platinum albums ever. Richard Patrick had departed the touring band to form Filter, and Reznor revamped the group with drummer Vrenna, keyboardist Woolley, guitarist Robin Finck, and bassist Danny Lohner. NIN caused a sensation at that summer's 25th-anniversary Woodstock concert, performing a ferocious set after horsing around and covering themselves in mud just before hitting the stage. Meanwhile, MTV had put an edited version of the video for &Closer& in heavy rotation and NIN scored one of the year's unlikeliest hits: a song whose chorus began &I want to f*ck you like an animal,& which helped make Reznor one of alternative rock's biggest sex symbols. The subdued ballad &Hurt& gained some further airplay, even though it lacked the titillating shock value of &Closer.& Later in the year, Reznor assembled the soundtrack of Oliver Stone's controversial Natural Born Killers, editing the songs together to create an innovative collage; he also guested on &Past the Mission,& a track on Tori Amos' second album, Under the Pink. In 1995, with new keyboardist Charlie Clouser, Nine Inch Nails hit the road with David Bowie, whose late-'70s albums (along with Pink Floyd) had been a major influence on The Downward Spiral. He also contributed a cover of Joy Division's &Dead Souls& to the soundtrack of The Crow and issued the remix album Further Down the Spiral, which nearly reached the Top 20 (a testament to his popularity).
 
Using money from The Downward Spiral, Reznor built a state-of-the-art studio in New Orleans in a building that had once been a funeral home. While pondering his next move in the wake of his sudden stardom, he produced Nothing signee Marilyn Manson's second album, Antichrist Superstar, which did indeed make him a superstar. In 1997, longtime friend Vrenna had a falling out with Reznor and eventually was replaced by Jerome Dillon; Reznor's maternal grandmother also passed away that year and his friendship with Manson soon deteriorated. Even so, he produced another movie soundtrack, for David Lynch's Lost Highway, and contributed the new single &The Perfect Drug,& which flitted unpredictably between several different rhythm tracks. Though &The Perfect Drug& kept him in the public eye for a time, Reznor was still unsure what kind of statement would be an appropriate follow-up to The Downward Spiral; that uncertainty resulted in a severe case of writer's block. In the meantime, NIN were proving vastly influential on a new crop of bands; major labels signed up industrial metal outfits like Filter and Stabbing Westward, and an assortment of alternative metal bands started grafting industrial production flourishes onto their music; Guns N' Roses lead singer Axl Rose even fired the rest of his band and holed up in a studio to pursue a more NIN-influenced direction.
 
Nine Inch Nails finally returned in 1999 with the double-CD opus The Fragile. It debuted at number one with massive first-week sales, but slipped down the charts rather quickly afterward, perhaps because the musical climate had changed a great deal over the past five years. The remix album Things Falling Apart followed a year later, as did an extensive world tour. An album of live performances culled from the tour, And All That Could Have Been, was released in early 2002. Reznor was largely quiet during the next three years, finally re-emerging in 2005 with another chart-topper, With Teeth. Touring continued into 2006, where NIN spent the spring and summer on the road with various support acts including Saul Williams, Bauhaus, TV on the Radio, and Peaches. The EP Every Day Is Exactly the Same appeared in April 2006; it contained the title track and five various remixes (all originally from With Teeth). Touring America followed, and then late in the year Reznor was back in the studio working on the next album. In early 2007 the band resumed touring, this time in Europe. A viral marketing campaign began when USB key chains that contained new songs were found in the restrooms during NIN shows. These key chains also contained a noisy audio file that, when run through a spectrum analyzer, drew an audio wave in the shape of a phone number. The phone numbers were answering machines filled with conspiracy theories, there were fake websites strewn across the net, and busy Internet forums and wikis appeared to theorize about and document it all. The big payoff appeared in April when the dystopian concept album Year Zero arrived. A year later Reznor began experimenting with different methods of distribution when he made the Saul Williams album The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of Niggy Tardust available as a digital download. Reznor had helped produce the album and had planned to release it on his Nothing imprint but as his distaste for the major label system increased, so did the possibilities of digital distribution. He completely broke free from the system when he left Interscope and released the entirely instrumental album Ghosts I-IV on his own in 2008, making it available in both digital download and CD formats. The album's release also marked the end of his Interscope distributed Nothing label and the beginning of a new imprint, Null Corporation.
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