Trent Reznor's music is often grating, always suggestive, and never passive. But the creative finesse in his work is a significant factor of Reznor's success that's often overlooked. Broken Machine: A Tribute to Nine Inch Nails features relative unknowns covering many of NIN's best-known songs with mostly lackluster results. The problem here is simplicity. Industrial music, despite its heavy-handed drill-press rhythms and tortured vocals, is deceptive. To do it well -- as NIN does -- takes real talent. Unfortunately, the artists who appear on Broken Machine only replicate the bombast and aggression of the music, never digging deep enough into Reznor's material to create anything more than a blurred facsimile. Cleopatra's Covered in Nails is the superior Nine Inch Nails tribute, featuring name-brand industrial/goth artists such as Die Krupps and Rosetta Stone.
AllMusic Review by Johnny Loftus