Nine Inch Nails Sued Over Six Songs
All-Star Music August 1997

Musician Mark Nicholas Onofrio is suing Nine Inch Nails and Trent Reznor for allegedly failing to credit him as the author and performer of six Nine Inch Nails songs.

Onofrio claims in the suit that he submitted a copyrighted album titled Elephant Man to Reznor in 1993, after Reznor responded to an e-mail sent by Onofrio agreeing to listen to the album. Of the songs he submitted, Onofrio claims that four sound "strikingly similar" to five of the songs on NIN's album The Downward Spiral, and another one of his songs sounds like the NIN song "Burn" off of the Reznor- produced soundtrack Natural Born Killers. Both albums were released in 1994 on nothing/ Interscope Records.

Onofrio states that his song "Voice" sounds similar to both "Closer" and "Mr. Self- Destruct"; his song "Nothing" sounds like "March of Pigs"; his song "Real" sounds like "Hurt"; his song "Dinner with Jeff" sounds like "Downward Spiral"; and his song "This Hell" sounds similar to "Burn."

Onofrio filed the suit Monday (Aug. 18) in Los Angeles Central District Court for damages for injunctive relief for copyright infringement and unfair competition, and demands a trial by jury to pursue his claim. TVT Records, nothing Records, Interscope Records, Warner Bros., and the music publishing company Leaving Hope/ TVT Music are also named as defendants.

By Tina Johnson