The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

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The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

SMU professor Susanne Scholz in the West Bank in 2018.
SMU professor to return to campus after being trapped in Gaza for 12 years
Sara Hummadi, Video Editor • May 18, 2024
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Nine Inch Nails returns with eighth album release

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Nine Inch Nails was formed in 1988 and performs a variety of musical genres, including rock and metal. (Courtesy of Fanart.com)” height=”168

Nine Inch Nails eased itself back into discussion in an major way this year with its eighth studio album “Hesitation Marks.”

This may come as a surprise to some following the band’s adventurous career.

NIN lynchpin Trent Reznor put the band on hold to focus on side projects and film scoring, even managing to win a Grammy for his work on “The Social Network” (2010).

Somewhere during Reznor’s trailblazing projects, though, Nine Inch Nails got lost in the mix.

It’s a shame – the band’s landmark album “The Downward Spiral” (1994) introduced the marriage of nihilism and progress, freedom and slavery into
pop music.

Reznor left a powerful spell on the hearts and minds of music fans that’s still kicking.

One would think Reznor, favorite producer of 2008’s beat laureate Timbaland, would have more of a presence in pop music.

Well, now’s the time.

The man whose impact David Bowie once compared to The Velvet Underground’s birth of a new noisy litter’s finally birthed some healthy babies of his own, in a manner of speaking.

Most obnoxious on this list is pop’s mischievous prince Kanye West. “Yeezus” (2013), the producer’s latest offering, owes part of its essence to Reznor.

Harsh, clanging drums, citrusy pops over warm vocals and shrieks overtake “Yeezus,” a far cry from West’s former opulent persona.

Here is someone with his back against the wall on multiple levels lashing out to a beat.

Dueling themes of freedom and degradation find their way onto “Yeezus,” too.

Reznor’s gone on record saying he doesn’t approve of the album’s lyrics, but what does it matter if he was there first?

Let’s remember West’s recent VMA performance of “Blood on the Leaves” last August.

Beams of light left our would-be hero in otherwise darkness pouting at the devil, not unlike Nine Inch Nails’ own dazzling, hateful shows.

Death Grips exist on the other side of the spectrum here. The trio of Stephen “MC Ride” Burnett and producers Zach Hill and Andy “Flatlander” Morin.

Whereas West is never without his pop aspirations, Death Grips is a bit harder to figure out.

The band’s sound isn’t exactly radio ready – a bedlam of noises flying into each other like roided-out deaf kids.

“MC Ride” barks pleas for absolute freedom in a style that recalls Public Enemy’s Chuck D.

For a band with a relatively small profile, Death Grips operate on a unexpectedly high level.

Its highly anticipated third album, “No Love Deep Web” (2012), drew eyes with the hard penis posing on its cover.

People were naturally stunned.

The feedback from critics ruined the unlikely bond between Death Grips and major label Epic Records, forcing the group to leak the album itself from a
hotel room.

The Death Grips live experience is slowly evolving from an aggressive shouting match to something else entirely.

On Aug. 3, 2013 Death Grips pull a no-show for its set at Lollapalooza. Instruments and other equipment were left for the audience to watch while music blared from speakers.

Why? Death Grips wanted to have a show where the audience is the focal point, not the band.

Audience members tore through the equipment in a rage. The band probably wouldn’t have it any other way.

Death Grips’ antics bear the influence of Nine Inch Nails in a time where the old media machine has given way to the Internet.

Fans of Death Grips may accuse West of biting styles for “Yeezus”, but all directions point to Reznor, a man whose career has lived to see its seeds take form while still banging out jams of his own.

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