Zeitschrift unbekannt


Veröffentlichungsdatum unbekannt ca. 1992

Son Of  Hammer Horror  

Autor: Dele Fadele





TRENT REZNOR is currently the acceptable face of industrial music. He‘s managed to use his self-contained electronic group to distil the foreboding European essence of Front 242 et al and put an attractive gloss on what was once the most underground of styles.

After the top-selling ‘Pretty Hate Machine‘ made Trent into someone that American kids might look up to, legal complications bore down on him, stalling recordings, causing unpleasantness. This year‘s mini-album ‘Broken‘ was recorded amidst scenes of paranoia and secrecy and. whether by default or design, the result sounded like a sample-based descent into hell.

And it gets stranger. Apparently at Trent‘s instigation, the tracks from ‘Broken‘ have been handed to an array of left-field remixers to form ‘Fixed‘, which rivals Lou Reed‘s ‘Metal Machine Music‘ as an exercise in wanton experimentation.

Reznor might have a right to feel aggrieved, but there‘s really nothing to excuse monumental self-indulgence on such a gross scale. If ‘Fixed‘ is commercial then I’m Michael Jackson’s llama. Even the furthest voyages out there into unlistenable noise have nothing on the final track, ‘Screaming Slave‘, which is the musical equivalent of having a virus in your computer — scrambled nonsense. And you can guess by the track record of the chosen remixers— Coil, Jim ‘Foetus‘ Thirwell, Butch Vig and Trent himself—that these are hardly going to be floor-filling cosmetic surgeries of the like favoured by, say, Shep Pettibone.

No, the main advantage of ‘Fixed‘, apart from its value as a handy party-pooper, is the way the constituent elements of ‘Broken‘ have been discarded for a ‘F— You‘ aesthetic. No longer do you have to suffer Trent Reznor‘s self-obsessed, graphic lyrics (except on ‘Happiness In Slavery‘) which show a persecution streak as wide as The Nile; no-one‘s life is this hopeless, surety. And, certainly, no longer do you have to deal with his pleading, snarling whine. On the negative side, you do miss those massed ranks of sampled guitars he used to stimulate the illusion that there was a real band in the studio with him.

But let‘s not get carried away. Amongst the pleasing ambient fluff (‘Throw This Away‘s drawn-out intro} and the occasional echoes of orchestral swooning (The charmingly titled ‘Fist F—‘ — get a life! — as overhauled by Foetus), and the computer percussion, lies a heart of emptiness, a volcano of nothing. So, Trent Reznor has a sick sense of humour. Just don‘t let him get away with this one middle-digit-raised salute.

(3, for sheer gall)

Dele Fadele