The first thing you
need to know about Nine Inch Nails, the guitar / synth army that blew massive
holes in the heads of audiences on the first Lollapalooza tour, the innovative,
darkly intense cyborgs whose "Broken" EP found its way onto critics'
top ten lists last year via its genre-shattering Sex
Pistols-Crash-Through-"The Dark Side of the Moon" cyber-punk ferocity,
is that they don't really exist.
"It's a convenient fiction for me to work
under, that's all," says Trent Reznor, the tech wizard pulling the strings
from behind the curtain. We're talking in a dimly lit alcove in L. A. Record
Plant, a gloomy Reznor-like biosphere where he sits, lotus-like, a veritable
guru of gloom, relaxing between mixes of his groundbreaking new album,
"The Downward Spiral". Bathing in the eerie melancholy of music by
his friends Coil (who sound like congenitally depressed Tibetan monks from Neptune), Reznor runs his hands through hs
raven-black hair and murmurs, "I guess I have a real affinity for working
with machines in certain ways. It's like they're my friends." He looks up,
grinning. "I mean, I have *real* friends, too."
Oh yeah, like Uncle Festus, and the Thing, and
Cousin It... Reznor chuckles, a rare event. "Actually, a lot of people who
meet me wonder where the cape and fangs are." Thin, handsome---he could
pass for Andy Garcia's younger brother---Reznor has the air of a man who is
bravely attempting to bear up under bad news. And he is. For Reznor, that great
sucking sound you hear is God and the Universe abandoning us, drawing us into
the void. On Nine Inch Nails' debut, PHM (quasi-industrial synth-pop) and the
EP "Broken" (more machine-driven, more raw guitar punk), he railed
against the dissolution of his inner and outer universes with a laser-like
ferocity at once chilling and a bit over the top. Indeed, the first thing you
notice about Reznor up close and personal is the absence of any malice in his
mien. Though often painted as some bitter lost soul, his music suggests deeper
yearnings towards faith, hope, even charity. He also made the most repulsive
video you've never seen for "Broken", Happiness in Slavery, featuring
a naked man being mechanically eviscerated and castrated. Small-town geniuses
seem partial to castration fantasies.
Well, better to externalize it, "to get it
out and feel purged", as Reznor puts it, than to cut off your ear a la Van
Gogh. One of the hallmarks of Nine Inch Nails' music is a sense of catharsis,
of toxins being purged and cleared, rather than the impacted whining and
wallowing in the mire of bands that blindly celebrate their pain. In that
regard, Reznor is less pop's Dracula than its Edward Scissorhands, the gentle,
wounded Prince of Disorder, struggling against his isolation to reconnect with
a greater whole. One listen to "TDS" will change the way you think
about electronic and industrial music forever. Combining technique and
institution, Reznor has made machine music which carries the human pulse in
ways that astonish. Even the guitars, processed through a virtual wall of
electronic mirrors, sound like everything you've ever loved and nothing you've
ever heard before. The child of divorced parents, he was raised by grandparents
in Mercer, Pennsylvania, whose bleak cultural landscape echoed Grant Wood's
"American Gothic". Reznor's back door literally overlooked a
cornfield. Every child of divorce blames him or herself on some level---the
mind may forget or rationalize such traumas, but the emotional impact can
resonate through a lifetime. For Reznor, classical piano lessons and Kiss
fandom eventually suggested a creative outlet via electronic music.
A move to Cleveland led to a contract with TVT and
1989's "PHM", which spawned two semi hits, "HLAH" and
"Terrible Lie". But TVT was expecting more of a pretty hit machine,
and two painful years of litigation ensued when Reznor found more compatible
quarters at Interscope Records. His 1991 EP "Broken" was, as Reznor
puts it, "The kind of record that sounds like a real band playing but upon
further investigation there's something definitely wrong with it."
Layering tracks beyond the assimilative power of the human ear ("if we had
48 tracks we wanted to bury 48 riffs that were meant to come out with repeated
listenings"), manipulating raw sounds through intricate machinery, Reznor
succeeded in creating an overall effect at once primal and complex. "The
starting point there was to make a dense record," he observes with some
understatement. "We approached the new one from the opposite point of
view---a record with holes everywhere."
Indeed, "TDS" marks another quantum
leap musically for Reznor, even featuring other humanoids, including some
Mobius strip guitar work by Adrian Belew. Lyrically, songs like "Mr. Self
Destruct" and "Reptile" are as cheery as ever. But Reznor is not
Lucifer with a drum machine; he's more like the suffering Job crossed with the
raging Jeremiah, tearing down the false in a desperate, oddly confident search
for higher reconciling truths. Over the course of two lengthy conversations, we
attempted to do just that, going beyond the how of his music into the
"why". He struggled to answer questions he'd never articulated,
perhaps even to himself, but which are very much at the root of his artistry.
We even got him to laugh once or twice...okay, twice.
Musician: There's a political correctness
creeping into alternative music lately that tries to define punk, or
alternative legitimacy, according to an unspoken set of rules. As if being raw
and abrasive automatically means you have integrity. They must go crazy trying
to pigeonhole you.
Reznor: It seems like the media demand
everything be categorized and labeled to be understood, yeah. That became really
apparent when we went to England. This guy comes in to do an
interview and he's really pissed at me. What have I done? And he's fuming.
[imitates his anger] "Well, what kind of music do you guys play? Are you
electronic? Then why the guitars? And your show was bordering on being
theatrical---what's going on?" I said, "You're the one who's making
up the names, I just do what I do. I'm sorry I don't fit into your retro-all
sythesizer-cyberpunk-category bullshit." I'm watching him struggle with
"I want to like this...but I can't because I don't know what I'm
liking." If I told him it was electronic, he'd still be pissed off because
it wasn't pure electronic: "Wait, you're a synth band but you use
guitars!" Well, blow me.
Musician: The new album goes beyond blending
genres. The machines sound so warm and human, while the vocals sound eerily
mechanical. As if the two have switched places.
Reznor: I'm flattered you say that. I think I
was setting out to make a record that you might not realize is mostly synthetic.
When you sit down behind a drum machine and a computer, there's a very obvious
way to use it, and if you read the instructions, the music comes out a certain
way. A lot of people reject that because they don't want a Janet Jackson or
Gary Numan sounding record. It's dismissed as unfashionable. And I was at a
point where I'm thinking, maybe there's a reason every rock band has guitars,
drums, real people playing them. So I started this album on the computer or
keyboards, then I fleshed them out by bringing in some guitar. Because of my
classical training, I feel more competent on keyboards. As soon as I put my
hands on the piano the chord is far richer than the E or A barre chord when I
naively play guitar. I know where that added bit of harmonic depth is on
keyboard, and that's one thing I wanted to expand on with this album. The
organic thing is true on a number of levels. This album focuses on decay, and I
chose to use a lot more organic sounds, from real instruments to swarms of
bees. I hired a guy whose job was to do nothing but sample those sounds. So
there were these new textures. But the guitar is a more expressive instrument
in many ways, you can get nuances that are very hard to simulate on keyboards,
and especially samplers.
Musician: I think Pete Townshend once said he
wished he could play like Larry Carlton early on. But if he had that facility
then, he probably wouldn't have been so innovative.
Reznor: Yeah, there's a transcription of
"Wish" in some guitar magazine, and the best part was where they
said, "This middle section is virtually untranscribable." All right,
success! Now, that main riff has got to be the simplest thing in the world for
any real guitar player. But a lot of them ask me how the hell I got that sound.
The answer is, Don't read the instruction book! Fiddle around. The studio
itself became a real instrument for me. I didn't really know how it worked, but
that's where the naivete factor kicks in. You do something "wrong"
and think, "Wow, that sounds cool, why not try this instead?" Just
like my guitar revelation. Everyone mikes the speaker. Why not plug the amp
right into the board? That sounds crazy to some people, it's not technically a
"good sound". Who cares? What some players might initially think was
a godawful sound was inspiring to me and it fit what the track needed. You have
to get past the barriers that come with training. I have a hard time working
with other engineers, Flood excepted, because they'll try to undo everything
I've made sound a certain way because "drums or guitar don't sound that
way." Now with computers I can create guitar parts that I couldn't sit
down and play.
Musician: So we're talking about a kind of
"virtual reality" approach to music?
Reznor: I try to avoid any word that defines
the process, but it's a really unique sound. On this album and
"Broken" I played stuff right into the board and then into the
computer, and manipulated it with programs that don't work in real time. Once
it's in there, you can do things to it that have no equivalency in the real
world. Like analyze the frequency and flip it upside-down. It takes maybe 10
minutes for the Macintosh to process that cut, and you wind up with sounds that
are different from anything you could get otherwise. I like the idea that there
are guitar players out there trying to figure them out. Hopefully, that'll
cause some misery.
Musician: Thematically, the lyrics and vocals
have the opposite effect: They're so cold, miserable and mechanical. "The
Becoming" seems to be this hilling metaphor of a person literally losing
their humanity, becoming machine-like.
Reznor: I'm afraid some of this stuff is pretty
intense, and I can see how it can be dismissed as calculating and theatrical.
But it's real, to me. When I think about the state I'm in I feel like a fucking
loser because I've got things I really should be glad about. I'm aware that I'm
fortunate to live in this house and do what I've always wanted to do. And be
one of the few who got the record deal. I hear myself bitching about how "it
sucks to be popular", then I have to just stop because that's bullshit to
say so. By the same token, I'm not more happy or content with my life than I
was ten years ago. I got everything I wanted in my life... except I don't
really have a life right now. I don't have any real friends, any relationships
that mean anything to me, and I've turned myself into this
music-creation-performance machine. When I got off the road after the PHM and
Lollapalooza tours, I didn't write a note of music and I wasn't sure I wanted
to do it anymore, to be honest with you. But we had this horrible fucking
lawsuit hanging over our heads in order to get off our old label, TVT.
"PHM" was written from the point of view of someone who felt that the
world may suck, but I like myself as a person and I can fight my way out of
this bullshit. "Broken" introduced self-loathing, which is not a
popular topic with anybody, especially in a song.
Musician: But it doesn't feel like you're
wallowing in the pain and betrayal. There's an urge for healing in the howling,
a purging of all these emotional toxins.
Reznor: I absolutely feel that it's a positive
release. Like, some of the songs hit home to where, this sounds idiotic, but
honestly, tears just... "Terrible Lie" is one that always kicks into
gear. Maybe the first minute I'm adjusting to technically what's wrong onstage,
the monitor is feeding back, but by the end of the song it's taken you over and
you mean what you say. You can't fake that, people can tell. There's a feeling
of elation and a strong sense of calmness. Suddenly, I don't really have a
desire to go out and fight people anymore. I've gotten something out of my
system, and when you do that four or five times a week for a couple of years
that's enough. I didn't need to be around alcohol, drugs, backstage scenarios,
adulation. Then there's that weird juxtaposition of singing to audiences of
being isolated and not being able to fit into anything or relate to anybody. To
find a little niche you can just disappear into and be normal. To not have
pain, and have the path laid out for you, which is something I long for at
times. And you're onstage with 10,00 people grabbing at you, do you know what I
Musician: We're with you in your isolation. All
Reznor: Yeah, and you're meaning what you're
singing and looking down at these subhuman things going, Take a shit on my
head, spit on me, anything. That fucks up anybody after a while. I've learned
these little ploys where when the audience isn't into it I'd ram it down their
throats and get them to hate us. But often by the end of the show when the last
thing you feel like doing is going onstage, and your throat's sore and at some
point you look out on the crowd and they know the words and they're shouting
them back at you, and they're having a real experience of flushing it out of
their systems--- it's probably the best feeling of my life.
Musician: Did that influence the sound on
Reznor: Definitely. When we played the songs
live they mutated, they got heavier and more rock oriented because of the live
drums and guitars and the sound began to take on a life of its own. A lot of
people had seen us live and said we were great--- then they went, "God, I
bought your record and it sucks, man! It's like some synth shit or
something." After hearing that so many times you start getting macho about
it: "I'm gonna make the hardest-sounding record I can."
Musician: Offstage, do you get feedback from
your fans that your music is helpful or purgative for them?
Reznor: I don't know what kind of mail a
mainstream rock band gets but we get about one letter out of 1,000 that says,
"Your music is the only thing that keeps me going." And then, "I
totally relate to what you're saying, however..." Insert horrible
situation: "My parents beat me, I'm gonna run away; I'm a drug addict;
I've tried to kill myself...and if you get this please just call me and
respond...you don't know how much it would mean...that would keep me
going." I didn't know what to do. I could call this person up, but I'm
inevitably going to let them down. I can't talk to you 100 times a day. And if
I write a little note, you get one back the next day and another the day after.
Musician: You probably would eventually hurt
them by trying to help them.
Reznor: Yeah, the world fucked them and then I
did too, by inaction. I felt shitty about this for four or five days, and after
talking to some people I thought the best thing was not to, because I did
exchange letters with a woman once and she wanted tickets and she showed up
with this, "Hi, we're engaged to be married" scenario. I try to make
a point of not being a dick to anyone who comes up to me, and believe me there
are many times when you don't want someone on your bus fucking with you. I
always try to think about if I were meeting someone I respected... Prince was
in the studio here the first day I came in, and somebody said, "Hey,
Prince likes your stuff, he had your "Broken" CD in the car and he
later actually told his people to mix their tracks harder and it might have
been due to hearing Broken ". I thought they were kidding, 'cause this is
a guy whose work I respect immensely. Figured it might just be cool to say
"hi" if I ran into him around the studio. Then I find myself at one
end of a big long hallway and he's at the other end walking towards me. So I
simply said "hi" and waited for him to make eye contact. He just
turned away. That strikes a wrong chord in my Midwestern upbringing regarding
simple human decency. I don't mean to sound judgmental, but I've no great
desire to meet Bowie now, because in my mind, I'd rather think of him as this cool guy.
Musician: Is that why you chose Adrian Belew
for "TDS"? And how was it working with a live musician in the studio
for the first time? Any control issues come up?
Reznor: No, he was an inspiration. To be
honest, I've been listening to a ot of music I avoided when I grew up --- like
Led Zeppelin-- becuase people who I didn't like liked them. Flood and I have
been on a big Bowie kick, "Low/Heroes" era, "Hunky Dory" --- stuff that
I never heard growing up in rural western PA. But we were infatuated with that
whole "Low"/Belew style of playing, and we wondered if he'd be into
doing it. It happened he was in LA, and agreed to come up to the house the next
day, so our bluff was called and we were intimidated. What are we going to do?
We figured we'd just put on six songs and have him play through them. So Adrian shows up, totally nice guy, no
attitude. But I could tell he was thinking, "What am I doing here?"
We were in the living room where Sharon Tate was murdered, the vibes
started...what's going on here? So we rolled the tapes and just asked him to
play. He's "Do you want rhythm stuff?" I said, "Anything you
feel like doing." "Well, what key is it in?" "Uh, I'm not
sure, probably E, see what happens, don't worry about it."
Musician: This is exactly what Fripp says Bowie
and Eno did to him on the "Heroes" session, incidentally. Go on...
Reznor: He said something about just doing
something with Paul Simon, and we said okay, this is the anti-Paul Simon. This
totally fast machine thing kicks in, he stops for a minute and just starts
playing and immediately all of our mouths drop open. Just to see someone who
can play that well and tasteful. We stopped the tape and he thought we were mad
at him or something. And I said, "No, it's worth paying you just to watch
you play, man." Next round, we told him to just make some noise, come up
with some riffs. Later we cut up the tape and dropped it in where it fit. The
end of "Mr. Self Destruct" was all loops and his playing straight in
Musician: Earlier you talked about almost
giving up music after Lollapalooza and your tour with Guns n' Roses. Was there
a part of you expecting not to be liked? You talked about wanting to almost
alienate people at times.
Reznor: I think it was the insecurity of
heavily overstepped boundaries. With Lollapalooza, we were still an
up-and-coming thing. The biggest show we'd ever played was 200 people. Now
we're in front of this scary, potentially hostile audience of 25,000. I was
afraid the other bands might be into this star thing, "I want
catering!" But everybody, with the exception of Henry Rollins, was totally
friendly. I remember Ice-T playing guitar with us on "HLAH", totally
cool guy, very talented. But it was a soul destroyer in terms of the technical
problems we were having. My performance started revolving around dealing with
what was fucking up rather than communicating with the audience. Plus this is
the tail end of about 2 1/2 years of touring, compounded by the fact that my
drummer had a heroin problem and... now he's dead. And other band members had
traumas and I felt beaten up to the point where I was hiding, I couldn't deal
with it. The lyrics from "Broken" started to form around then. Then
Axl Rose made contact with us. He was a fan, and wanted to help out. We were
going to Europe to do a tour, and we figured out
what better way to confuse people than to open for GN'R? So we did, and the
audience hated us. We were terrified to start with, and then we're talking
onstage in front of 65,000 people in Germany. The first song goes okay. Second
song people realize we're not Skid Row, who came on after us. Third song they'd
confirmed the fact that they've heard a synthesizer and it's time to *attack*.
There's something about the sight of every single person flipping you off in a
giant stadium that makes you go instantly numb. I started laughing, then
insulted them with anything I could think of. At that moment I see this fucking
link sausage come flying up onstage and I thought, okay, Germany, link sausage, you got us. So that
was a penis shrinker. Then I looked into the audience and about 20 rows back
there's some poor fucking kid holding up a NIN shirt, and I gave him a quick thumbs
up. Suddenly there was this scuffle and he was *gone*. Never to be seen again.
That night we got the figures for our t-shirt sales. Out of 65,000 people, how
many did we sell? Three. Now, I know I saw one of them myself. You would think,
just in the general confusion, some folks might have thought, Oh, that's a cool
Musician: Chaos theory would support that
Reznor: I thought we would have done at least
double digits. Twenty, maybe. That was amazing. The TVT thing is nearing
litigation, a two-year process, we're told. I've got to stop doing this for a
while. Then some idiot booked us on the stupidest tour of all time, opening for
The Wonder Stuff. Were they throwing fucking darts, or what? And those guys
were egomaniac fuckheads. I started drinking, which we never do when we play.
And I couldn't get this stuff we were talking about out of my system onstage.
Then I knew I had to get out but I couldn't. The only way out was through the
crowd back to the dressing room, and I struggled but people kept putting me
back on stage. I looked down and our road manager's mouth was a bloody mess. I
asked what happened, and he said, "You punched me four times in the
mouth!" I freaked, had to get away from that scene, and everything onstage
was broken. It was just too much shit to deal with.
Musician: Which led to "Broken", and
the notorious video for "HiS", featuring castration and other
gruesomeness. You knew it wouldn't get airplay. People ask, why spend all that
Reznor: We're not defiantly doing it so it
won't get played. We did it because the director and I were both into gore
movies. We're both into feeling repulsed, the feeling of pushing limits, of
seeing something that makes you squirm...
Musician: Why? Because you've been numbed by
the world and you need to jolt yourself to get what you really feel?
Reznor: I don't know why. No---I can tell you
why. Because I grew up in rural PA where it felt like the world happened five
hours away in a place where I could never get to. I can see a bit of it on TV,
but I can't have access to it. And nobody's doing what I would like to do here.
I don't know how to do what I want, and I feel crushed because I have this
shitty education. There's a lot of things I wish I knew about, like Eastern
religions. My scope of travel was maybe a half-hour radius, and every little
town had the same K-Mart and Cineplex playing the same five movies, all
Sylvester Stallone. It's hard for people who've grown up in cities to
understand that, to have an endless cornfield for your backyard. But that's
what a lot of America is---it's not dodging gunfire from
gangs. I know what I *don't* believe in. I don't have my own life together,
really. I don't wake up in the morning feeling spiritually whole, or great about
nature or God or the universe. And I've been on a quest instead of finding a
way to start a life.
Musician: But even Stephen King doesn't get
that much horror and hurt from a cornfield. We're all screwed up, but
twentysomething artists saw the accelerated collapse of many of your inner and
outer supports---religion, government, educational institutions, and a 40%
divorce rate among your parents. It's hard for our minds to understand, or even
see, what that can do to our emotions. It's not the only factor, but a
therapist friend told me that in 20 years of practice, he's never seen the
child of a divorce who doesn't blame himself or herself. Mom and Dad, the sole
source of security to a child, have come apart. Unconsciously, it's like the
kids' trust bone is shattered, which cripples all your relationships until it
heals. Cobain, Vedder, both come from broken homes...
Reznor: The stuff you're saying makes a lot of
sense. [pause] Yes, my parents broke up when I was five. I grew up with my
grandparents. It wasn't bad. I love my parents and I'm friends with both of
them. I don't blame them at all, because they were really young and I would
have done the same thing...
Musician: Of course. It's not about blame or
guilt. But those emotional scars, the sense of separation, of not being able to
trust, is still flushing out, healing up. Looking back, do you sense any of
that in your art and life?
Reznor: I know I haven't come to terms with all
that shit. I just felt sort of...off to the side. I hated school...I fucking
hated it. The fact that it revolved around something you didn't have access to.
If you weren't on the football team, if you were in the band, you were a leper.
When people say those were the best years of our lives, I want to scream. But
my parents allowed me to do things that my friends weren't allowed to do. I
smoked pot with my dad the first time. I didn't have to be in by midnight. It was an open environment. And
when I moved away I didn't completely fuck myself up or become a drug addict, like
some of my friends who had a more oppressive home life. But I remember seeing
"The Exorcist" when I was 11 or 12. It fucked me up permanently
because it was the most terrifying thing I could ever imagine. I couldn't
discredit it like I could "The Alien". Because I'd been fed all this
bullshit by Christianity that said yes, this could happen.
Musician: So your parents encouraged your
freedom of expression and experimentation, which you use in your music in
creative ways to deal with your shit.
Reznor: Maybe all this comes down to me seeing
"The Exorcist". But at least I had that liberating, questioning
environment, too. We did this long-form video around "Broken" and a
lot of people thought I'd become fascinated with serial killers, which I'm not.
It's more about questioning my own motives---do I have it in me where I could
do that? Like in "Silence of the Lambs" or "Red Dragon",
where the scariest thing is when the detective realizes that he has this side
of his brain where he could figure out what the killer could be doing. Because
he has part of that in him. Facing that. Not that I'd go out and kill
Musician: Yeah, the more you're conscious of
where your pain or fears actually come from, the less they come up as complexes
Reznor: Well, I actually thought I was the
Antichrist after I saw "The Omen" when I was 13.
Musician: That explains a lot of your lyrics,
plus those funny marks on your forehead. [laughter] One last question. There's
a piece on the new album called "A Warm Place" that is unlike
anything you've ever done before. It has a lot of heart...
Reznor: I wanted to make a little spot in the
context of the record where there was a break in the action. In the midst of
this build-up of these ever-growing, terrible machines, I just wanted to
remember that there is somewhere...else.
Tools Of The Devil
Steve Albini supposedly makes a band sound like
you‘re playing in a room,“ muses Reznor. “I don‘t know what room he‘s listening
to bands in, but that‘s not what a real drum kit sounds like to me.“ Instead of
sampling drums and storing them digitally, Trent put his Tama drum kits in 20 or 30
rooms, then played each drum at different levels of intensity into two PZM
mikes. “Then I made banks in my sampler of just that, so everything was in
stereo, every drum was just the way you hear it, no close miking, no EQing,“ he
explains. “When I played them on the keyboard I was shocked to find they
sounded the same as I remember hearing them in that room. You can tell they‘re
Downward Spiral, Reznor‘s keyboard sampler arsenal included four Akai S-ll00s,
an Oberheim Expander, a Mini-Moog, a Prophet VS, a Waldorf Microwave and his
favorite, the Kurzweil K-2000. “The Kurzweil is the coolest Instrument to come
along in the last five years,“ asserts Reznor. He’ll import guitar samples
played an a late-model Les Paul or Gibson Explorer into the Kurzweil for some
“real-time modulation.“ Other string things include a Fender Precision bass and
a Takamine Acoustic. From the samplers, sounds are then fed into his Macintosh
Quadra computer and manipulated via his favorite software program, Studiovision
by Opcode (“great for MlDlfying, EQing and creatively distorting guitar
sounds“) plus Pro-Tools and Turbo Synth, both by Digidesign. Same of Adrian
Belew‘s guitar samples are run through Ilnfinity Looper. Reznor utilizes
Marshall JMP1 and Peavey 5150 amps, and GHS Boomers (Light) strings. Out board
effects include a Zoom 90-30, an MXR Blue Box, a Mutron, a Big Muff and a Screaming
Bird, often run through a Demeter preamp Vocals are usually punched directly
into the board via a Shure 58 and an AKG 414 “when we needed a more ‘hi-fi feel“
His “secret weapon“ was two old Neve mike preamp EQs ripped out of an old board
which he overdrove for vocal distortion effects and “sometimes ran the whole
mix through it just to crunch things up a bit.“ Trent also wants to thank Interscope
pres Ted Fields for the loan of John Lennon‘s Mellotron, and adds that his “hallucinogen
of choice“ while recording was Cuervo 1800. Presumably MIDI‘d through the internal organs directly
to the brain.