The enigmatic and unpredictable Trent Reznor has promised a return to work on his esteemed Nine Inch Nails, as he assures fans “all signs point to yes”, in regards to new material from the project that kick-started his career.

In his typically mysterious way, Reznor teased fans in a recent interview detailing his work for blockbuster videogame franchise Call of Duty, Reznor hinted that “there are some things in the works” in regards to the influential industrial project, despite a string of farewell shows in early 2009.

Since then, Reznor has dabbled in scoring film, bagging an Oscar for 2010’s The Social Network, and a Golden Globe nomination for 2011’s Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. Reznor has since returned to the music industry, with his new musical project How To Destroy Angels; which all now seems to be a possible stepping stone towards Nine Inch Nails’ return.

“It’s really been an unexpected, weird ride,” Reznor tells Rolling Stone of the past few years. “I’m grateful to have the opportunity to work. I’m just trying to approach things with integrity and try to find things that are interesting to me.”

Yet it’s more from NIN that fans of the counter culture icon are yearning for, and it seems that their cries for a return may be answered for the first time since 2008’s The Slip. Reznor has also not ruled out the possibility of live performances either.

“Yeah, if it feels right, it’s a possibility. I never said that that wasn’t going to happen, just that it couldn’t go on as it was,” Reznor says of the project’s hiatus and the possibility of any live shows. “Yeah, if it feels right, it’s a possibility. I never said that that wasn’t going to happen, just that it couldn’t go on as it was,”

“Having a few years doing other things, I’ve enjoyed [them] and I’m enjoying doing How to Destroy Angels, and there will be a place for stuff that falls in the Nine Inch Nails column,” he says. “It’s a different kind of work. Stay tuned. We’ll see what happens here.”

Yet for now it’s his work with How To Destroy Angels that will occupy his time, as the band consisting of Reznor’s wife Mariqueen Maandig, and frequent collaborators Atticus Ross, and Rob Sheridan, prepare for the release of their new EP Omen through major label Columbia next week, to be followed by a full-length in 2013.

“It’s coming out sometime Quarter One of next year,” Reznor says of the LP, “music videos will start to creep out pretty soon. You’ll hear about some live performances coming up… We’re just trying to have fun and try to give it its best shot for people to actually check it out.”

Never resting, this news comes hot off the heels of Reznor’s secretive new project with cutting edge headphone makers Beats by Dre. Assuring fans that it “is not what you are expecting”, Reznor has joined forces with the trend setting audio company for a project he has described as “challenging and fascinating.”

Never one to reveal his hand prematurely, Reznor provoked speculation as he refused to detail the project, saying “I’d like to tell you about the things we’ve dreamed up… I just can’t. Not yet…”

Could this project be at all linked to NIN’s return? With so much on the fly, it’s hard to tell, however as Beats diversifies its product line and services it’s impossible to completely rule out some form of connection. The only thing for certain is that this legend of the industry is busier than ever, and that his innovation will continue as he refuses to fade into non-relevance.

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