His battles with depression and social anxiety are so legendary that, during NIN's prime, Reznor was reduced to being a relative shut-in, putting out albums at a career-halting pace of one every five years or so. Johnny Cash covered a Nine Inch Nails song as a roundabout means of informing his fans that he was about to die. That is the kind of music that a guy like Trent Reznor makes.
The Artist You Don't Know
Trent Reznor pictured with his New Kids on the Block tribute band, Step by Step.
Trent Reznor used to be the keyboard player in an early '80s new wave cover band. That's him on the far right in the above picture, pretending he doesn't hear the cameraman telling everyone to look needlessly serious. At the time, he was a fresh-faced 18-year-old student of computer engineering at Allegheny College in Pennsylvania. The band was called Option 30, and his duties included lead vocals, keyboards, and (we're assuming) keytar.
Awesomely, the only known recordings from Reznor's foray into walking on sunshine consist of a bunch of covers of songs by bands like Icehouse, the Thompson Twins, and Falco. We know what you're thinking right now, and the answer is yes, we do have a clip of Trent Reznor singing Falco's "Der Kommissar."