From 1989 to 1992, all anyone knew of Nine Inch Nails was prettyhatemachine. Your opinion of that one album was your opinion of Nine Inch Nails.
Before Broken, NIN’s sophomore EP, you could be forgiven for thinking Trent Reznor was the heir apparent of electronic Goth, following the dark path of Joy Division and Depeche Mode. Reznor was the scion of a venerable HVAC company (founded 1888!), and probably spent much of his young life in the presence of gigantic, droning machines. “Industrial” was already wired into his veins.