NINE INCH NAILS
March 8, 1994 - 2019: 25 years of The Downward Spiral.
The Downward Spiral = the downward of mankind.
A quarter of a century ago, grunge and gangsta-rap were dominating the scene ...yet none of these would derail the trailblazing musical genius and visionary that is NINE INCH NAILS's creator and mastermind: Trent Reznor.
The industrial-rock genre started a decade before with SKINNY PUPPY, FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY, KMFDM and the mighty MINISTRY, but after NIN's debut 1989's Pretty Hate Machine LP and 92's Broken MCD ...shit got mainstream and shit got really serious. Part alternative, part metal, part electro, part ambient and a lot of industrial, NINE INCH NAILS's The Downward Spiral is all-that ...and way more.
Recorded at Le Pig, yes that very house on Cielo Drive in Beverly Hills where the bloody Manson-murders took place in 1969, it brought that extra eerie-ness to elevate The Downward into an organized-chaos juggernaut. The album is a voyage into Reznor's tormented mind, a place of both beauty and sheer madness. Musically, as well as lyrically, The Downward introspect and retrospect every emotions from the human psyche.
The album kicks-off with "Mr. Self Destruct" a heavy guitar-driven fast-paced track, to the lounge vibe of the lovable "Piggy", followed by "Heresy" with it's hypnotic synth-intro and military sub bass-drum beat, to the majestic "Ruiner", to the mechanical rhythms of "The Becoming" and to the muscular up-beat of "Big Man With A Gun" with it's repeated demented "shoot shoot shoot shoot shoot" gun/penis innuendo.
On the B-side, the sad and despaired "A Warm Place" feels like a death in the family, yet the gigantic "Eraser" rocks us right back into action and "Reptile" pounds the listener into oblivion. The slow and epic melancholic piece "Hurt" closes the album and opens another angle into Reznor's personal mayhem. Covered by legend Johnny Cash in 2002, this cut has now been cemented as one of the saddest song ever put to tape !
The pinnacle of the album shines with track #4, the elitist "March Of The Pigs" with it's abrasive guitars and schizophrenic drum-pattern, intertwining with lovely piano off-set chorus-bit, pure dynamic brilliance. Another number that still today gets ANY crowd in the mood is the eclectic/enigmatic/erotic "Closer" ...a dance-floor favorite worldwide.
NINE INCH NAILS's The Downward Spiral is a dirty soundtrack and goes way beyond just mere rock-music: it's a full-on experience for the senses. From the artwork's pristine soiled canvas, to the posh, sexy and suave promo-videos ...this is full 360° art.
25 years later, it's RIAA-certified multi-Platinum legacy still remain un-fuckin-matched. If ONE ALBUM could encapsulate the term "musical masterpiece" ...look no further than: The Downward Spiral !
I want to break it up !
I want to smash it up !
I want to fuck it up !
I want to watch it come down !
MARCH OF THE PIGS
LIVE WOODSTOCK 1994
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