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 Access, 18. Mai 2004

question submitted by blue:

are expectations daunting to you? when a new nin album is coming out, it seems to me that everyone expects you to reinvent the wheel. to turn music on its head again. do you sometimes wish that that expectation wasn’t there? that you could just write good songs and not worry about how sonically challenging they are? or is it important to you to always be pushing the envelope? thanks for your time, and for this opportunity.


response from trent:

the highest expectations are the ones i place an myself. the main reason i haven’t put out more NIN records is that i haven’t always felt i was in a place to s a great record. my brain hasn‘t always operated in a “career—friendly” way, so i‘ve tried to fit a career around it.

question submitted by tim:

in our current climate of file sharing & declining record sales, do you ever see music coming to exist purely in a digital form?

if so, do you think that it could mean the death of the album, with “artists“ recording single songs at a time?


response from trent:

the album as a format was dictated by vinyl. digital is here to stay. i think “single” artists will sell far less “albums”, but they’re mostly filler anyway. album artists will continue to work in longer forms – collections f songs. everyone lives happily ever after.

question submitted by mademoiselle:

allo mr. trent,

i noticed that you now have links to chomsky and moveon.org in the resources section. in the past you expressed little interest, if not outright apathy when it comes to politics. does the addition of these links indicate anything in terms of your lyrical direction for the new album? or is it merely a reflection of a new found political awareness or awakening?


best wishes with the new album.


response from trent:

today’s political climate does not allow the luxury of apathy.

question submitted by idioteque:

your care to the art that accompanies your music hat always bee something that impressed me about nin. the packaging of your albums, the websites, the live shows etc. it’s clear that a great deal of effort goes into it all, where other bands just shit out whatever will get the job done. is it difficult to keep your quality standards up in an industry driven by low overheads and a general lack of care?


response from trent:

in general, the industry is a lot less receptive to those things. art seems to keep getting in the way of commerce. success is determined by sales over quality. i‘ve had many arguments with those that claim nobody cares about packaging, light shows, t-shirt quality, etc. but i do. it does matter to me and i think it must to some others as well.

question submitted by digital:

if i may ask, what are the reasons behind putting “rules“ an yourself for this album? you mentioned no chords. is there a specific reasoning behind this? what do you hope it will accomplish? are there any other “rules“ on this album?


response from trent:

perhaps because i don’t have a “band“ to arrange material, sometimes it helps me to create guidelines or rules to follow. limitations to narrow the focus on the particular situation - too many options can be bad.

question submitted by toe.knee.bee:

first of all, i am a 30 year old man who acts like a kid when there is new nin material, so thank you for doing what you are doing. my question is: you’ve always taken an artistic approach to the video medium and often shown your disgust at how few people use it as a viable form of artistic expression - will you continue to put videos out for mtv/mtv2 viewers or will forfeit those productions to put those out in a different way (i.e. dvd, the website, etc)?


response from trent:

i’m exploring different ways to get the message across and i’m not sure at the moment.

question submitted by will:

how do you feel about these legendary artists such as bob dylan, & led zeppelin selling their for tv commercials, and would you ever consider doing something that stupid?


response from trent:

if an artist owns the controlling rights of their music, then its their decision to do what they please. i wonder if dylan could understand the sinking, hollow feeling i had when i heard his music in that context. how much money does led fucking zeppelin need? do they realize (or care) that when you hear their track now you visualize a shitty car whizzing by? do they understand the significance of what their music once held for people — or is it really all about how many units you can sell and commerce at any cost?