Manson's impenetrable coldness and lack of emotion helped to make him a compelling figure, so it’s a little disconcerting to hear him wail with sadness over something as banal as heartbreak.
This record arrives following the demise of Manson’s marriage to burlesque dancer Dita Von Teese, an experience that left him, by his own admission, “completely destroyed”. Indeed, even by the gloomy standards set on previous MM releases, it seems to have been written in the throes of some seriously black moods.
See, Manson may not have always been the happiest bunny in the pop world, but he used to possess a withering sense of humour, and took a gleeful delight in winding up his conservative opponents. His music may have been hit-and-miss, but the interaction between Manson and his enemies always made for terrific entertainment.
The problem with this record is that Mr. Warner has effectively opted out of his usual bracing discourse with the outside world, instead looking within for inspiration. The results are too often less-than-inspiring, and our Marilyn’s music has not established the sort of consistency required to atone for this lack of drama.
Besides, who wants to hear a figure like Manson moping about a break-up? His impenetrable coldness and lack of emotion helped to make him a compelling figure, so it’s a little disconcerting to hear him wail with sadness over something as banal as heartbreak.
The sound tends to reflect its creator’s bleak moods. There’s a lot of desolate, booming heavy rock, and a number of tortuous guitar solos. Manson’s croak sounds disappointingly human, and possesses none of the sarcastic energy that fired classic singles ‘The Beautiful People’ and ‘The Dope Show’. Standout track ‘Mutilation Is The Most Sincere Form Of Flattery’ proves that he can still do a spirited glam-metal stomp when he feels like it, but the fun factor is disappointingly absent elsewhere.
But let’s not worry: rumour has it that Manson’s promotional videos remain as sick as ever, and this visual aspect accounts for at least 50 per cent of his appeal. Perhaps this record will act as little more than a cathartic experience, from which he will emerge even nastier than ever. Fingers crossed.
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Considering Marilyn Manson changed from being a rag-wearing societal reject to an alt-fashion icon the nanosecond the opportunity presented itself, it should be no surprise that there’s not a trace of goth left in the band anymore. In fact the only thing to separate ‘Heart Shaped Glasses’, the lead track of Eat Me Drink Me, from Franz Ferdinand’s sound is Mr. Manson’s trademark vocals, which are part of his image. The increasing difference between the product and its packaging is only confirmed by the oh-so-shocking Natural Born Killers-inspired video, which features him and his girlfriend, the inspiration for the track, having (possibly real) sex. Oh, please.Read More
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I previously couldn’t stand Marilyn Manson. This album has changed my mind. My preview copy came complete with a letter from Mr Manson himself, articulately explaining his attitude to his art, and rightly castigating the US media for demonising him in the wake of the Littleton, Colorado, high-school killings.Read More