Marilyn Manson – The High End of Low

January 01, 1970

(Interscope)

 

www.interscope.com

 

In
recent months, Marilyn Manson has told Rolling
Stone
, Revolver, and journos at
other metal-minded rock mags that he’s got his groove back – or words to that
effect. Everyone who’s into music even peripherally knows that the guy who uses
mountains of MAC  – heavy on the eyeliner
ala vintage Alice Cooper — has had some rocky personal times since he married
burlesque artist Dita Von Teese in 2005 and she kicked him to the curb just two
years later citing her inability to tear him away from his true passion – lots
of pharmaceuticals.

 

Manson
says he was heartbroken for a while, but moved on pretty quickly into amore
with Evan Rachel Wood (and for those of you playing at home, yes, we know the
happy couple broke up but Wood has hinted the love match is back on).

 

Say
what you will about Manson, this guys’ new 15-track disc The High End of Low is amazing. Yeah, it’s high-energy metal. Yeah,
its lyrics are graphic. But it’s also a real rocker that has you tapping your
foot and starting to sing along – until you realize what the lyrics are really
saying and you glance around guiltily as you roll up your car window.

 

With
tracks such as “I Have To Look Up Just To See Hell” and “I Want To Kill You
Like They Do In the Movies” it seems that Manson may well still be working out
a few – uh – relationship matters. But, hey, it’s fun to go along for the ride
complete with Manson’s smoky vocals and rebel yells mixing perfectly with the
pounding drums and guitars of his metal genre.

 

But
don’t think for a minute that Manson’s latest effort is some screamer rock set
to mind numbing noise that pretends to be metal. Consider “Devour,” the first
song on the CD. What makes the song powerful is that Manson’s smoky voice
conveys the powerful lyrics “I will blow your heart to pieces and I’ll love you
if you let me….” with just simple keyboard work as the accompaniment for a good
portion of the song.  “Leave a Scar” uses
the heavy beat and jarring guitars to underscore Manson’s point that he’s just
“a painting that’s still wet. If you touch me you’ll be stained, stained for
the rest of your life.”

 

Much
has been made about boatloads of profanity Manson uses in his songs. This album
is no different as evidenced by the song title “Arma-goddamn-motherfuckin-geddon.”
Yeah, some of that profanity used by Manson seems thrown in for shock effect,
but Manson is too smart to write lines such as “first you try to fuck and then
you try to eat him.” Believe it or not, it does underscore the song’s message (stay
with us here, kids) of women who try to control or kill men. (Think he’s
thinking of someone specific when he’s singing this? Hmmmm.) And this song is
much more than the words; it’s filled with catchy hooks and an infectious beat.
The same is true of “Wow,” another tap-on-the-dashboard tune with crazy, cool
lyrics “I was happy for a while and I stopped being scared but you thought I’d
change after a while and said you’d better treat me better or else. Or else
seems like a stupid fucking thing to say to someone like me…” Again, think we
have a message to a specific someone here?

 

But
listen, that’s cool if past heartaches or current complications help Manson
turn out music this easy to love. It’s been reported this is Manson’s first
music with bass player Twiggy Ramirez (who now apparently just goes by Twiggy)
since 2000’s Holy Wood.

If
he’s the reason for the wicked cool beats on the album, then let’s be sure not
to let him loose again. Even if you’re not a metal fan, check this disc out.
Manson die-hards are likely to think it’s some of his best work to date.

 

Standout Tracks: “Wow,” “Detour” NANCY
DUNHAM

 

 

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