The Beginning of the End
The fragile soul behind NIN scrutinizes a greater existence beyond his own torture with a concept disc that runs like CliffsNotes for 1984 -- ones that have been sealed with rage and stomped through Trent Reznor-patented machinery. In Reznor's mad scientist treatment, sci-fi gets kinky with modern reality and a dystopia ripens in 2022 (Year Zero). An intriguing cacophony of tension-building minimalism, crunching metal hooks, grimy factory beats and paroxysmal distortions, the album is an astute echo of terror, chaos and urgency. Dance, conspire theories and freak your friends out with it.