first_imgEver since Marilyn Manson donned Aladdin Sane-style hair and make-up for the cover of Mechanical Animals, the world has suspected that wanted to be David Bowie. The Golden Age of Grotesque shows America’s most reviled fetishistic faux-goth adopting Bowie’s most impressive characteristic, the ability reinvent his persona for every album. Manson has cast off the cartoon horror of his debut, the grubby black metal chic of Antichrist Superstar and the religious parody of Holy Wood. This time, the man, the band, the legend, emerges as bizarre amalgamation of tarty burlesque hedonist and sleazy industrial rock star. Taking more than just leaf out of Nine Inch Nails’ book in terms of sharp beats and angsty lyrics, Manson has produced fusion of pervy grindcore and melodramatic groaning, ‘The Bright Young Things’ being a prime example, adding a dash of explosive rock ‘This Is The New Shit’. Oddly, Manson’s friendship with Eminem seems to have rubbed off on his music; the lyrics often turn towards hip hop posturing, with mentions of big cars, bitches and casual sex. And this isn’t the only ludicrous thing about the lyrics. We’ve always known Manson was no poet, but Grotesque has some really awful lines: “I memorise the words to the porno movies, this is a new religion to me” and “I won’t pull out, I just came”. Manson’s deadpan seriousness in wailing these corkers out, banshee style, detracts from the album’s good points, namely its well-mixed beats and darkly atmospheric sounds. Stranger still, there is a curious singalong feel to a couple of tracks, notably ‘Slutgarden’ and ‘mOBSCENE’, the latter being a shameless rip-off of Faith No More’s ‘Be Aggressive’, which Manson is clearly hoping his Kindergoth fans are too young to remember. But Manson isn’t just for the kids in Slipknot hoodies; if you can get past the pseudo-artistic pretentiousness of the frontman whose egocentricity is embarrassingly evident from the album’s artwork, you will be rewarded with some guaranteed rock nite favourites and some quality music-to-shag-to for goths.ARCHIVE: 3rd Week TT 2003last_img