No. 4: Nine Inch Nails, ‘Pretty Hate Machine’ – Best Debut Hard Rock Albums
In a post Guns N’ Roses glut with labels rushing to sign the next big rock band, Nine Inch Nails mastermind Trent Reznor was the next rocker to flip what would be considered “hard rock” on its head. The delivery and the passion of rock was there, but Reznor added in darker themes, industrial sounds and an infectious beat that was just as at home in clubs as it was on rock stages.
‘Head Like a Hole,’ with its screeching monkey sounds and synth-led brutality, was the disc’s breakout track, but songs like ‘Down in It’ and ‘Terrible Lie’ brought plenty of angst as well. ‘Something I Can Never Have’ was equally heavy in a more intimate setting and ‘Sin’ was also a standout from the record.
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