There are plenty of contenders for the best albums of the '90s, but The Downward Spiral by Nine Inch Nails is an LP that’s more than a look inside 1994. The album is a genuine masterpiece written and recorded by Trent Reznor during the beginning of his descent into drug-fueled madness. Through the record, Reznor was able to channel the depression and mania that were piling on his personal and professional lives into a dense concept album that captured the feeling of falling apart.
The time leading up to the recording of the album was marked by scandal. Reznor was hiding out from his record company, jettisoning members of his touring band, and becoming the poster boy for industrial rock. Reznor wasn’t just writing about the downward spiral, he was living it.