An Omen


Nine Inch Nails mastermind Trent Reznor continues to play mad chemist with industrial music, this time via a side project featuring his wife, Mariqueen Maandig. Her soothing voice lends a twisted effect to this EP. The largely acoustic “Ice Age” is oddly folksy, and for a six-song set, An Omen boasts a wide emotional spectrum. There are periods of tranquility that give way to invocations of disaster—something Reznor and Maandig convey on the chorus of the opening track: “I … can’t … keep it together.” Though Reznor forges new ground, he doesn’t forget his past. The electronic violence of “On the Wing” is reminiscent of “Terrible Lie,” and “The Loop Closes” would have fit comfortably on Pretty Hate Machine. Closer “Speaking in Tongues” is slow, distorted and disturbing. Rather than tame him, marriage has nurtured Trent’s deviance. –Ray Cavanaugh

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