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Nine Inch Nails

The Artistic Evolution: Embracing Change in Music


In the ever-evolving landscape of music, change is not just inevitable but essential. The journey of an artist is marked by an incessant quest for creativity and innovation. As we delve into the stories of bands like PJ Harvey, Radiohead, Beastie Boys, Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode, and Fleetwood Mac, we uncover a shared narrative of transformation. These artists, once confined to their original sounds, dared to venture into uncharted territories, thereby cementing their places in the annals of music history.

The concept of ‘selling out’ is often debated in the music industry. When artists deviate from their original sound, they are often accused of abandoning their roots for commercial success. While it may be the case that record labels push artists in different directions to maximise the profits banked by the oligarchs, it is ludicrous that independent and up-and-coming artists are also greeted by the same accusation. Especially if they have complete creative freedom over what they innovate and orchestrate.

Any real music fan will be aware of how difficult it can be for independent artists to create a comfortable living without seeking other means of income. Just take a recent interview with Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs in the Guardian on how their fans are amazed to hear that they are back in the office after playing shows and they have been fired for taking time off for touring. It is time for music fans to gain perspective and view transformations as acts of autonomous expression, where independent artists exercise their creative freedom to explore and grow, rather than conforming to external expectations.

If you have been caught between feeling compelled to replicate your earlier material and daring to metamorph your sonic signature for your next releases, this article, which demonstrates the detrimental nature of assimilating your older material out of obligation, may give you a clearer view of which avenue to take your future releases.

Loyalty vs Innovation

The music industry often presents a dichotomy: remain loyal to your original sound or innovate and risk alienating your fan base. This dilemma is particularly poignant in the cases of bands like Radiohead and Fleetwood Mac, who dramatically altered their musical directions. Radiohead’s shift from the grunge-inspired “Pablo Honey” to the experimental sounds of “Kid A” and Fleetwood Mac’s evolution from blues-rock to the pop-rock anthems of “Rumours” are testaments to the rewards of embracing change. Their success stories challenge the notion that loyalty to one’s original sound is the only path to enduring relevance.

The Adage “If It Isn’t Broken, Don’t Fix It” Doesn’t Apply to Art

In the realm of art and music, stagnation is akin to regression. The musical journeys of PJ Harvey and Depeche Mode provide inexplicable examples. Harvey’s transition from bluesy punk-rock to a more accessible indie-rock style, and Depeche Mode’s evolution from upbeat synth-pop to a darker, more atmospheric sound, demonstrate the artistic necessity of breaking free from the ‘if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it’ mindset. Their willingness to reinvent themselves not only kept their music relevant but also allowed them to explore new depths of their artistic potential.

The Muse Isn’t Always Found in Chartered Territory

Exploration beyond familiar boundaries often leads to the discovery of a muse that redefines an artist’s work. The Beastie Boys’ transformation from a hardcore punk band to hip-hop icons and Nine Inch Nails’ journey from synthpop to industrial music highlight the importance of seeking inspiration beyond the comfort zone. These shifts not only revolutionized their respective genres but also opened up new avenues for creative expression.

New Material Doesn’t Obsolete the Old

A common fear among artists is that their new work might overshadow or invalidate their previous creations. However, the evolution of these bands shows that new material can coexist with and even enhance the appreciation of their earlier works. The new sounds do not erase the old; instead, they add layers to the artists’ narratives, enriching their musical legacies. You may receive backlash from your fans who find a sense of pride in saying that they have been following you from the start and have grown accustomed to a certain style, but you can’t please everyone’s subjective view, attempting to do so will only serve as an inhibitor to your creativity. That’s the same creativity that drew them to you in the first place.

How Fans Can Decree Music Is ‘Terrible’ When It Is Made with the Same Talent That Produced the Art They Fawn Over

The reaction of fans to an artist’s evolution can be complex. While some embrace the change, others may be quick to criticise, forgetting that the talent and creativity that endeared them to the artist in the first place are still at play. It’s crucial to recognise that the same spark of genius that created the beloved early works is driving these new explorations, even if they take a different form.


The stories of these iconic bands serve as a powerful reminder to musicians and artists everywhere: the pursuit of creative evolution is not just a right, but a responsibility. Embracing change, exploring new horizons, and challenging the status quo are what keep the flames of creativity burning. As artists and fans alike, we should celebrate this journey of evolution, for it is in these changes that the true essence of art is found.

If you have a brand-new sound you want to showcase, submit your music today to see your music featured on our top 10 UK music blog.

Article by Amelia Vandergast

The Ecuadorian Pop Priestess NÍNIVE alchemised explosively ethereal ingenuity in ‘Solo En Ti’

Following the spiritually beguiling prelude of ethereal vocals and minimalist electronic melodicism, the transition into the high-octane installation of fierce feminine energy with body-slamming beats to boot you into rhythmic arrest is a broadsiding testament to the boundless ingenuity of the one and only NÍNIVE.

For her seminal single, Solo En Ti, NÍNIVE collaborated with the world-renowned music producer Enrique Gonzalez, who has worked with everyone from Metallica to Tina Turner to Nine Inch Nails; together, they sonically solidified the Ecuadorian alternative artist’s claim to the pop throne.

Put her on your radar and watch her ascend even further with her forthcoming album; the ingenuity that the LP will breathe was teased by the explosive alchemy within Solo En Ti. If Mitski swallowed an atom bomb, her avant-garde stylings still wouldn’t come close to this scintillating Tour De Force.

Clearly, her strong musical background has served her well. NÍNIVE began her musical education at a young age at the National Conservatory of Quito and furthered her vocal studies at the College of Music at Universidad San Francisco de Quito (a Berklee Global Partner). She also holds a Masters of Music in Songwriting from Bath Spa University.

Solo En Ti will break ground on the airwaves on September 15; stream it on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Nethermead delivered darkwave decadence in his latest alt-pop hit, Bodysnatcher

Sam Smith’s music video for I’m Not Here to Make Friends has nothing on the latest filmic masterpiece from the alt-electro-pop artist, Nethermead; neither does Eyes Wide Shut, for that matter. The baroquely fetishistic aesthetics in Bodysnatcher amplify the tribally entrancing rhythmics of the track that makes a serpentine meal of carnal pleasure.

South Louisiana has spawned innumerable southern gothic icons, but few pertain the same scintillating allure of the artist and producer who genre-bends industrial, darkwave and alt-pop to set salacious scores that have never been settled before. If you want to empower your libido while feeling the sharp hooks of a catchy chorus, hit play and never look back. Closer by Nine Inch Nails may go down as one of the sexiest singles in history, but Bodysnatcher is hot on its lascivious heels.

The official video for Bodysnatcher is now available to stream on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

GLYTSH took control of the UK metal scene with their dark vehement aesthetic in Hard(core) Memory

After boldly covering NIN’s most seductive single for their debut and creating a triumphant hit out of it by unveiling the demure holes that were left unfilled, the London-based metal-inclined duo, GLYTSH, have released their sophomore single, Hard(core) Memory.

Hard(core) Memory is Reznor served with Peaches (hold the cream) paired with the fierce provocative metal aesthetic of In This Moment. Reminiscences aside, their projection of autonomy through infectiously unfuckwithable attitude is nothing short of hypnotic around the bite of the industrial beats, scuzzy grungy drums and feral guitars. It stays on the right side of lascivious, while teasingly toeing the line, unapologetically proving that assertive feminine energy has never been about getting dicks hard.

Considering that Hard(core) vindicated me more than Bikini Kill’s I Like Fucking, it’s safe to say the French vocalist, Jennifer Diehl and Swiss guitarist, Claire Genoud, are a fair way along in their mission in reminding us that the Riot Grrrl ethos didn’t end with the dawn of the new millennium.

The official video for Hard(core) Memory premiered on June 1st. Check it out via YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spotlight Feature: Chris Luke has made a soulfully interstellar return to the airwaves with his industrial cosmic rock track, Love’s Big Machine

After getting sync deals in shows, such as Beverley Hills 90210 and McKenna, and contributing to the OST in the 2021 film, The Girl Who Believes in Miracles, Chris Luke has released his first original single in two decades, Love’s Big Machine.

After a snarling industrial rock intro that establishes the Nine Inch Nails influence right off the bat, Love’s Big Machine starts to veer into a vibey euphonic hit that crosses timelines with its psych-pop nuances, classic rock structure and rock opera styling. It’s as spacey as Bowie, as upraising as a Christian & Gospel release, and thanks to the sporadic industrial touches, it’s as visceral as the similarly titled Pretty Hate Machine.

The Cleveland Ohio-hailing artist has definitively mastered the art of allowing pure expressive soul to resonate as infectiously catchy anthemic energy. We can’t wait to hear what follows.

Love’s Big Machine pulses with raw energy and heart. Both cacophonous and subdued, the lyrics celebrate the endless tumble of life and love, exploring themes of connection and isolation, with love as the driving force at the center. Part soundscape, part alt-rock-epic, Love’s Big Machine blends beauty and chaos in a unique, radio-friendly rock anthem.”

You can check out Love’s Big Machine for yourselves by heading over to Spotify.

Keep up to news with Chris Luke’s latest releases via Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

LA alt-electronica artist and producer Romy has unleashed her pitch-black industrial pop track, Penance.


Romy’s latest single, Penance, is enough to make Peaches sound tame. Against the industrial Nine Inch Nails-inspired beats, her sultry, fierce vocals spill enough magnetism to rival Shirley Manson while she roars through the lyrics that lament the dankness of society while making the unignorable request for the world to be gentle amidst the chaos.

The Australian LA-based artist and producer has exactly what it takes to dominate the mainstream and the grimy underground of alt-electronica. Any fans of Skinny Puppy, Grendel and Faderhead will be won over by the caustic beats. When it comes to the hooky pop elements, no one will be immune to their draw.

Check out Romy on SoundCloud, Instagram and her official website.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

OurNova reached the pinnacle of dark electro-rock with ‘Nicotine & Nosebleeds’.

OurNova’s latest EP, Bloodlines, Vol. 1, finds the middle-ground between lo-fi alt-rock and synth-pop; the perfect introduction to their dark electronic rock style is the ambiently plaintive standout single, Nicotine & Nosebleeds.

With the tempo of a Portishead track, chilling mechanical electronica tones reminiscent of NIN and the evocative sting of Blue October, Nicotine & Nosebleeds sits on the more melancholic side of the emotional spectrum. Yet, with the refreshingly honest lyrics and the sharp angular guitar progressions that cut through the dark atmosphere of the single, there’s no danger of falling into an existential hole while listening to the reflectively powerful single unfold.

Check out Nicotine & Nosebleeds for yourselves via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

12 Below – Jetsam: Austere art-rock

South Florida’s most avant-garde art-rock artist 12 Below is back with his sophomore single, Jetsam, which pulls together as a dark and discordant mash of industrial, darkwave synth-pop and post-punk.

With an intro that shares reminiscence to Manchester post-punk outfit The Chameleons before the soundscape switches into a phantasmal feat of electro-rock that any fans of Dir En Grey or Celldweller will be familiar with, you’ll be hooked from the first haunted note to the last.

The ethereally ambient soundscape was constructed with effect-loaded guitars and glassy keys in downtempo progressions, for the visceral kick, 12 Below loaded caustic drums and a heavy serving of bass. I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to hear an artist similar to NIN, who also makes the dark electro sound their own.

Jetsam is now available to stream via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Phantom Electric deliver protest punk catharsis with “Modern Culture”

Rage Against the Machine may be consistently be heralded as the ultimate political Alt-Rock act, but the visceral aural empowerment which stems from Phantom Electric’s single “Modern Culture” is just as adrenalizing.

Expect broiling buzzsaw riffs, frenetically super-charged drums and a growlingly ominous bassline which demands that Modern Culture is blasted at max volume for the ultimate hit of protest punk catharsis.

Feel the furore in the sonically tight arrangement which throws plenty of virtuosic tumultuous breakdowns your way in between the massive choruses which will undoubtedly be a hit with any fans of Deftones, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Nine Inch Nails.

Modern Culture hits so hard it might just knock some sense into the Alt-Right. The Atlanta-based act who made their debut in 2013 isn’t just one to watch, they’re one to get behind.

You can check out Modern Culture which dropped as a double A-side release with “Lie”, which also attacks the state of America’s increasingly fragile socio-political atmosphere via SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Aorta Project – Perfect Form: Enchantingly Psychotropic Ambient Electronica

AORTAPROJECT is the debut album from Aorta Project, the enchantingly psychotropic release takes electronically-crafted atmospheric ambience to another level in a way which will enamour fans of Deadmau5 and Jon Hopkins. Yet, discernibly, Aorta Project stamped down their transcendent signature sound with their debut – especially with their lead single, ‘’Perfect Form’, which was written and performed by Steven Sheffield & Allanah Maarten and mixed & mastered by Ashton Nagle.

Perfect Form allows you to indulge in over 7 minutes of evocatively progressive aural ingenuity which despite the polished production, still offers a direct intimacy which isn’t often heard in computer-generated music. It’s a track which will have you at the edge of your seat or rhythmically arrested on a dancefloor, wherever you are when it hits you, prepare to be overwhelmed by Aorta Project’s ability to command your rhythmic pulses. With the hauntingly sultry female vocals switching between whispers and mantra-like commands, expect the vocal notes to cut like glass.

You can check out Perfect Form for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast