November 2012 Reddit AMA
On 13 November 2012, Trent Reznor did an AmA-style ("Ask me anything") interview on Reddit entitled "I am Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails and How to destroy angels. AMA" . He would later do another March 2013 Reddit AmA.
Someone really has to ask this, so there it goes... Can you disclosure any future plans for Nine Inch Nails?
- Sure I could.
Any updates (good, bad or otherwise) on a Year Zero mini-series?
- Let's start on a down note! This is currently in a holding state. We didn't find the right match with a writer, and really have been avoiding doing what we should have done from the beginning: write it ourselves. We = Rob and myself. This project means a lot to me and will see the light of day in one form or another.
Can Rob really play instruments? How did he get promoted to musical responsibilities? He seems like a cool guy.
- He's sitting right next to me so I can't really talk right now.
Hi Trent. Thanks for the years of music. What's the status on The Fragile reissue? I know you talked about how Alan was doing a 5.1 remix a few years ago during a New York Times interview during the promotion for The Social Network.
- The 5.1 mixes are done and sound amazing. Alan was the only person who could have possibly done it, and he did not disappoint. There are a couple other elements involved that we want to get right before we put this into production. These involve packaging and additional content. Patience, my friends.
How is the creative process different working with your wife as opposed to a NIN studio musician (Lohner, Finck, etc)?
- She's a better kisser.
Are you going to be releasing multi-tracks of the HTDA songs for remixing?
- We're open to this. I'm a big believer in remix culture and would have loved to have had access to my favorite artists' stems when I was coming up. Of course there was the issue of primitive technology way back then... I don't know, do you want them?
I had a English teacher who said he has been a fan of yours throughout your rise to fame. If I recall correctly, he said the first show he saw was in a very small venue and it was just you (no band) performing Pretty Hate Machine material to like 20 people in attendance. Did such shows ever take place or was he lying to try and earn some cool points in the eyes of the class?
- Clearly, he was bullshitting. 30 people I can believe. 20? I don't think so.
How did you come up with the "Halo" number catalog? Did you have the foresight to now it would take on a life of its own with collectors? Why did you chose the word "halo" Was there any deep meaning behind it? Also, can you shed some light on "Null", "Seed", and "Sigil"? What was the goal behind all of these?
- I remember Depeche Mode did a similar thing and I thought it was cool. Somebody please remind me what the word Depeche Mode used was, I'm too old to remember what it was.
Trent, Thanks for doing this. Love the new HTDA stuff, love the Black Ops theme (but enough fellating you – you’ll get plenty of that here!). I’m really interested to know what your involvement may be in the rest of the “Millennium Trilogy” films. Last I read, Fincher wasn’t sure if he was going to be “brought back” to complete the rest of the series or not. If Fincher does return, will you and Atticus be doing the score? Thank you for all the great music you’ve created that has enriched my life over the years. You, Bowie and Tom Waits are my holy musical trinity and when I say you’ve enriched my life I genuinely mean it… good art is prone to do that, huh?
- Thank you. I'm not sure I belong in the same sentence as Bowie and Tom Waits, but I'll take it. Regarding the Millennium trilogy, my interest in this would be contingent upon Fincher's involvement.
What's your favourite piece of gear you've ever owned?
- My Dad got me a Wurlitzer 200a electric piano as a preteen, and it pretty much changed the trajectory of my life. That piano is long gone, but I did recently pick one up, which I love.
What was the first computer and software you used for music?
- I had a Commodore 64 with, I think, the Sequential Circuits Model 64 Sequencer Cartridge. And it was the greatest thing in the world (or so I thought at the time). Moving on... The first "real" platform I used for composition was a Mac+ running Performer. Pretty Hate Machine was done with this.
Was there anything you didn't/couldn't do for the Year Zero arg/promotions because it would have pushed the boundaries too far?
- Several ideas came up, including blowing up a building, actually incarcerating fans, and staging an appearance of the Presence in real life. Can't win em all.
Hey Trent. I've really enjoyed your new EP and I had a question about 'Ice Age' (Great track btw). How did this come to be? On the surface, it sounds poppy and maybe a little bit hopeful, but the lyrics and the underlying effects suggest something a bit darker. Should we expect the full album to sound more like this or will it be something entirely different?
- Thank you. We were experimenting around with the juxtaposition of something familiar and almost folky sounding sitting in a very cold and sterile environment. Mariqueen had this melody that would have been happy living in a Fleetwood Mac record, and we created this plucky accompaniment that sounded acoustic but was anything but. Then we put all that in the freezer. The full record expands the boundaries of the EP a bit more.
Aside from destroy angel's new EP, what's next for you?
- A number of things. Tweaking some things for the HTDA full LP (coming in Spring), helping Josh out on a new QOTSA track, working with Roy, starting rehearsals for two bands.
You are probably one of my biggest influences and inspirations, and I hope one day to be on your level. Creepy shit aside, I saw a video a few years ago about how much you love Mainstage. Do you still use it, and will you/have you used it with How To Destroy Angels? I'm taking my band on the road early next year, would you still recommend it for live use? Thanks for doing this AMA :)
- Mainstage worked well on the last NIN outing. It was my keyboard, guitar, and vocal rig, and was very stable. We're getting into HTDA live shortly, and I'll re-address the situation.
Total geek question right here and sure to get 1000 down votes: (from a fellow SSL large format console owner) How's the SSL Duality treating you guys?
- Simple: We love it. I hadn't had a chance to really use it before purchasing, so there's always that risk it might not suit your workflow. But it's been really great.
What drew you to Ilan Rubin as a drummer, for the last NIN tour? Considering he's so young, were you worried he wouldn't be able to fill the shoes of Freese?
- Ilan is a star.