Sound of a Generation – pt.5 July 25, 2008Posted by Matt in Sound of a Generation.
Tags: Generation X, music, Nine Inch Nails, video
As we have seen from the past few weeks, the dawn of the 90’s was a revolutionary time in the music world, but these changes were not just occurring in the murky mist of the Pacific northwest or in the long-neglected inner cities, suddenly movements seemed to appear across the country, taking sounds into new and different directions than they had previously been and turning a youthful multitude on its ear.
While the idea of hopelessness may be one that pervaded much of the music of the time, the response to the realization of the futility of life varied greatly. Nirvana and much of the Seattle scene reacted with anger, the angst of a generation realizing the world wasn’t all the great after all, the music aimed toward black America seemed to diverge into two directions: either crying out for justice or reveling in rampant materialism. Though, at this time, one person went another way, delving deep into the pit of despair and wallowing in the darkness.
Industrial music had existed for some time prior to 1989, but it was Trent Reznor who pulled the shadowy genre into the mainstream with his band (which was really just him), Nine Inch Nails. Employing a mix of synthesizers, percussion, and crunching guitars, Reznor’s nihilistic tales of gloom and woe found its niche with much of America’s disaffected youth. And it was this song, Head Like a Hole, that began his trek to the top.