on May 5, 2004
This is a genre of music I know little about and like even less. It is the first I have heard Marilyn Manson. I only purchased it because I happened across his autobiography ("The Long Hard Road Out of Hell") and found that so fascinating I was driven to try his music. I am what most Manson listeners would refer to as Establishment, a middle aged conservative housewife. In fact, I'm one of those that Manson wishes to make hate him. He has failed.
I chose this album because of the description of its creation in the autobiography, and I find it to be completely consistant in tone and message with his book. Manson is very clear and unwavering about his mission, and has woven it brilliantly into this record. It is every bit the hard, ugly, utterly desolate wasteland that is his self-described soul, and of course, such pathos is the best kind of entertainment.
To those of us who love extremes, and can appreciate plunging to the dark depths as much as soaring the pristine heights, such intense music is very therapeutic. We all have a dark side, and Manson treads into it unapologetically. One gets the sense he is holding up a mirror to the devil in all of mankind; in Christian terms, displaying the Fall magnificently.
Now, being a hearing-damaged old lady, I will say that the slower, more melodious tracks are the ones that speak to me. To the extent Manson tones down the screeching, the result is as sweet and heartfelt as any love ballad. But as always, it is the lyrics that bring the emotion into the experience, and his lyrics are astounding. "Man That You Fear" for example, is a summary in one song of all the tragedy that was his journey out of childhood and into the damnation he now feels. As with "Tourniquet", a bitter rendition of innocence spoiling to ruins, and the inevitability of the process (flies will lay their eggs), it is this harsh imagery that is so refreshing, as well as his honesty. What else can the line, "Take your hatred out on me," be but an open invitation to what society is obliging him by doing?
Even if most of the songs exceed my personal listening tolerance for "shards of glass" delivery, their lyrics are incredible. Digesting this album was like going on a rollercoaster ride; intense, frightening, and exhiliarating. I felt as if I had been changed in some way, which is exactly what excellent art should do. This album probes into the very heart of spiritual angst, both on a personal level, and a social level. He's made no bones about the fact he is on the warpath against institutionalized religion, and seems all too aware that without depraved ugliness such as his, beauty and goodness would have no meaning. This goes to the heart of the question, "why does God allow evil to exist?" The Christian answer might be so that God's glory can be all the more appreciated. Manson's role as the AntiChrist can be seen not only in terms of slamming the hypocrisy of religion, but also as giving them exactly what they want. In this album, he gives us a foreshadowing of the very thing they warned him about as a child; the horror of the Apocalypse. He has virtually become the expression of that thing he feared the most. This journey between extreme poles is another clue that he is an artistic force to be reckoned with. Manson has consciously chosen the role of manifesting man's darker nature, that part which follows Satan, if you will, and this album is a fine presentation of his message. If this is an exposition of the evil AntiChrist, we must ask ourselves a hard question: Is Manson's dark world really evil, or is the album actually an indictment of sanctimonious "good" people?
But, as with the book, one doesn't need to delve into all the inner meanings to enjoy this music. It has a deep, driving intensity that matches a person's need for introspective down time; music in which one can indulge one's more "vulnerable moments", to borrow a term from the secret reversed intro to track 4. On a practical level, this means it is perfect for when you're grieving a breakup, are enraged at being wronged, or simply wish to blast yourself with a good, hard, emotional listen. I highly recommend this album to those who like this kind of music, or to the curious who can be very open-minded.
on September 25, 2004
When this came out, People were blown away. Parents and Christians began picketing (And still do) his concerts; not realizing that they are only adding to the fuel of the fire. A large portion of what I can say about Antichrist Superstar can be said in Manson's own Autobiography the Long Hard Road Out of Hell, so instead of repeating what is said in that marvelous book, I shall state how I discovered Marilyn Manson, the meanings, and what I think of Antichrist Superstar.
I live/grew up on the edge of my town, without cable and very few people around me. Therefore it was quite easy for my parents to shield me from the world. I grew up as a kid with a foggy idea of what was around me so to say. The one thing about my parents was that they were not very religious. I have never gone to church except for weddings and funerals. Heck, I didn't really find out about the concept of God until fourth grade.(Yet I knew what Christmas was; thank you Public Schools!) I had always heard of Marilyn Manson and when you "hear of" Marilyn Manson, you hear the Rumors of Marilyn Manson. I thought he was a psycho who did things with his ribs. When the whole Columbine thing happened, I was afraid that listening to his music would brainwash me. At the time the only song of his I heard (Still thought was good, but was afraid of listening to it) was the song on the Spawn Soundtrack that has the same title as his book. After a period of time and occasionally hearing a song here and there, (Rock is Dead, Sweet Dreams) I wanted go deeper into what Manson is all about and examined his music and messages carefully. What ended up happening is that Manson is now one of my favorite Artists/bands and I own all of his/their records. Ironic isn't it?
The album Antichrist Superstar is a concept album which tells the story of the rise and fall of the Antichrist Superstar. It's his growing up as a worm; to becoming the man that you fear. It is a view on our society and how it functions. It has the reputation as Manson's darkest and most industrial album. There are 3 Parts. This is how the story unfolds.
Part 1: The Heirophant
Irresponsible hate Anthem: It's February 14, 1997 (Valentines Day) The Antichrist has risen, but we most go back to the beginning to understand his origins.
The Beautiful People: The Worm is born into a world where you must look good to succeed in life. (Awesome Video too)
Dried Up, Tied and Dead to the World: Throughout childhood the Worm has been used by people so that they can succeed and not him.
Tourniquet: This is the Worms's love life; every woman has taken advantage of him as well. He tries to create "the perfect woman", (see the video) but in the end he is her tourniquet and he is back to square 1. (Or so it seems)
Part 2: Inauguration of the Worm
Little Horn: Dark clouds begin to gather and The Worm is growing. He tries to save others, but he knows he can't. On an additional note, Little Horn appears in the Bible in the book of Daniel. He was a man that spoke out against god, it is often interpreted that Little Horn is the Antichrist.
Cryptorchild: Even though the Worm is weak, his metamorphosis is starting and he will become stronger. (The video for this was banned by the way)
Deformography: This is where he begins to become a rock star and starts to learn the tricks of the trade. Some people start to look at him as a leader.
Wormboy: He is just starting to understand what is happening to him.
Mr. Superstar: A Song that analyzes the way rock stars are seen as gods by their fans. His control over people is growing.
Angel with the Scabbed Wings: His followers and fanatics are doomed, simply put. He is now inhuman.
Kinderfeld: The title is Field of Children in German. Technically it's about Manson's grandparents. It's a type of flashback of when the Superstar was a Worm and he is reflecting on all that he has gone through and prepares himself for the final phase.
Part 3: Disintegrator Rising
Antichrist Superstar: At this point he tells the people that He didn't do this to them, it was themselves. He has become the monster.
1996: It's an Election year and the new leader is none other than the Antichrist Superstar. This is the peek of his wrath.
The Minute of Decay: After all the destruction, hardly anything is left and though he might as well go down, he wants to take everyone with him. Surprisingly it's a slow song.
The Reflecting God: It turns out that at the end, the only God was himself. This is where the whole be your own god attitude comes from (I think). He gives not himself or anyone forgiveness.
Man That You Fear: A nice slow song that shows History repeats itself. Any Worm can become the next Man that you Fear.
Then there are the untitled silent tracks. Track 17 is 9 seconds long, tracks 18-97 are 4 seconds long. And track 98 is 5 seconds long. I have no idea why it's like that, it just is.
Track 99: It's a small electro plea from the Antichrist. Is the he really gone? Lyrics are not given and I had to look them up via the net to understand it.
I honestly feel that this album is a masterpiece. The only songs that I occasionally skip are Wormboy, Mr. Superstar, and The Minute of Decay. However it may take a few listens to fully understand everything. Very angry, original and has yet to be copied. Manson used to have my fear but now he has my utmost respect. I hoped this helped.
on June 21, 2005
ANTICHRIST SUPERSTAR (ACSS) indeed is heavy, offensive, and accessible enough to top any of his other albums. The concept is the Wormboy, who is vulnerable and abused, being the cold and emotionless antichrist to take over America's youth and bring them with him during his downfall. It sounds like Bowie's Ziggy Stardust or Pink Floyd's The Wall, but with Trent Reznor's industrial and technical work making it brutally heavy. The lyrics do a great job insulting Christianity and middle America in general. The only problem with the production was the chaotic personnel problems. Founding guitarist Daisy Berkowitz left after only writing and recording on a handful of songs, Trent Reznor cowrote 3 songs, played guitar on a few, and brought NIN member Danny Lohner to play guitar, then Manson's bassist Twiggy Ramirez filled in for Daisy's absense by doing both bass and lead/rythem guitar slots. Let's not forget Zim Zum, Daisy's hired replacement who may or may not have played guitar on Irresponsible Hate Anthem. If you're into heavy metal or industrial and like a hard rock sensibility, this band is for you and ACSS is their finest album. It's by no means an easy listen, you should follow the concept to hear the story. Now for the songs...
IRRESPONSIBLE HATE ANTHEM-Perfect opener, my personal favorite. It's a fast and furious blistering piece of rock and roll with hateful lyrics, to me it sounds like terrorists blowing up a church. This song is set in 1997 when the antichrist is at the top.
BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE-The big single from the album doesn't disappoint. The riffs are so heavy and catchy they'll be in your head forever. It's about people with money and beauty having it better at life, which is unfair.
DRIED UP, TIED UP, AND DEAD TO THE WORLD-The tour was named after this song. It has alot of fancy industrial beats and keyboards and especially the ending really rocks. Lyrics about being used for everything by manipulative others.
TOURNIQUET-Another single and a concert favorite to this day. One of the most emotional songs with moaning guitars and sad lyrics about one of Manson's disturbing nightmares about making a girl out of his dead body parts.
LITTLE HORN-This song is another fast paced heavy metal rocker with all screaming vocals, perfect for moshing and headbanging. Lyrics about the antichrist rising to popularity.
CRYPTOCHILD-It's kind of filler but it's still an interesting listen with great keyboard work and a computer voice singing.
DEFORMOGRAPHY-This is an essential song about abusive relationships ending in murderous disaster. The verses are the best part because the lyrics are so sick and perverted.
WORMBOY-Daisy did this song and he was a really creative guitarist. The lyrics here are great but it's really an excuse for Daisy to play all the weird guitar parts he wants.
MR. SUPERSTAR-Another essential song about lusting fans going after the antichrist superstar and what they will do to be with him. The lyrics and chorus are great, and the guitar riffs in the chorus are very heavy like the upcoming Reflecting God. Fun listening song.
ANGEL WITH THE SCABBED WINGS-Another mid tempo hard rocker about the abuse the antichrist allows himself. This song has the best chorus on the album.
KINDERFIELD-The fans are correct, this is the creepiest song ever recorded. If you read his autobiography you'll find it's about his grandfather, a twisted porno creep.
ANTICHRIST SUPERSTAR-The title track is the perfect arena rocker, with the "hey!" chants and the awesome driving guitar riff. He's saying the people who love him and the people who hate him are both helping him get what he wants. The voice at the end is scary, it says "when you are suffering, know that I have betrayed you."
1996-The is even faster and heavier than Little Horn, the lyrics are anti-everything and everyone! If you're angry, you will love this song. Cool drums and guitars too.
MINUTE OF DECAY-Slow, stripped down, and sad. The antichrist wants to take his fans with him when he dies. He can't live the lie of life anymore because he's already dead. Manson wrote all the music for once on this song so it's worth a listen for the guitar work and bass lines he wrote.
REFLECTING GOD-Crying time is over, time for headbanging riffs, roaring screams, a great opening bass line, and the deepest anti Christian lyrics he's ever written. His idea of being God is scary yet excitingly violent.
MAN THAT YOU FEAR-The saddest song on the album, and probably of his career. If Manson songs could cause suicide, this would be Jonestown. The lyrics make life so trivial you question your own existence.
All in all, someone was going to make an album like this for the 90s, and Manson did it perfectly well. "Here's your antichrist superstar!!!!"
Okay, I like Marilyn Manson. At least his music. I don't compare him to Alice Cooper because I don't see Brian Warner out there swinging golf clubs on VH1's Fairway to Heaven. It may be easy to dismiss Marilyn Manson as all shock and no value, but that wouldn't be accurate. It is also easy to say that Brian Warner is Trent Reznor's brainchild, but that isn't entirely true either. What I do think, is of the three full length studio cds that Marilyn Manson has made, Antichrist Superstar is the best, most cohesive effort. It's right on the mark for angry, grungy angst. I can't think of another artist who does this kind of music so well. It's not speed metal where all meaning is lost, it's not hard rock which is more friendly and accessible. This album is dark and angry and it's great for that reason. 1998's Mechanical Animals shows Brian moving in a more Bowie-esque direction and while that's interesting, Antichrist Superstar is more Brian's pace. Although Trent Reznor produced, Brian still manages to keep the music and lyrics in his own arena. A must have for any rock collector.
on August 20, 2005
this album is a classic...i'm not a fan of industrial or popular music at all...i hate the stuff, to be honest with you...it's terrible, trite and repetitive and it'll more than likely go the way of disco. but this...this is amazing. i've never liked marilyn manson's albums very much either, but this is a bona fide classic. and i love every song on this cd...the lyrics are incredibly clever, and the music is catchy and not radio friendly at the same time...and i want to tell the christians that have reviewed this cd and the teen dabblers alike that not all christians are uptight freaks of nature who think Satan made rock and roll...i'm a christian, i love this album and i listen to hardcore and metal...so everyone can shut up about christians not thinking for themselves and being mindless drones for the church. for starters...catholics are the ones with "The Church" and fundamentalists are the psychopaths who burn records at demonstrations and protest shows...we're not all soccer mom psychos and we're not all anal retentive morons, either. SOME of us appreciate good music...so lay off already. the best songs on this album in my opinion are Irresponsible Hate Anthem, Mr. Superstar, Tourniquet [one of my favorite songs, period, actually] and 1996...well...i liked that one more when i was thirteen...but it's still decent when you're really in a bad mood. i don't listen to this that often anymore...but it's good to know that the album is still amazing nine years after you bought it initially.
on January 9, 2004
I don't care what any youth-group or money-grubbing, hypocritical preacher says (that means YOU, Pat Robertson) This guy isn't as bad as you religious nuts say he is. It's no less of an act than Ziggy Stardust. Shock-rock, you say? The shock is all in your head. Just like Slim Shady, he is whatever you say he is and he doesn't really care one way or the other so long as he's making an impression on you. Be it fear or fondness.
I don't get why everyone fights over Marilyn Manson. The church groups dislike him because he's just another thing they don't understand and the music fans complain that he is a sell out. How did he sell out? Everything's fine until you leave the underground and become popular isn't it? Then you're just crap. That's a wonderful way to treat somebody who's busting their hump to make music for your discerning taste.
Brian may borrow from some other past looks and ideals (David Bowie, Gary Numan, Alice Cooper) but he does have his own style and agenda. Speaking of Alice.. Didn't that old geezer get "saved" or some kinda junk? There's your sell-out right in front of you. When Brian prays for forgiveness on his death-bed.. then and only then will I call him a sell out. And maybe that will be his last shock before he leaves us...
And here's a shocker, every band you listen to now can be traced back to a band from before.. so they're >ALL< copying off of somebody. Originality is dead and has been dead ever since 'retro' got big. But when given the choice I'd rather listen to this than that Debbie Gibson knock-off, Brittany Spears. I want music that is trying to say something to me other than "Drink pepsi and look at my perky breasts!"
I do like some underground and lesser known bands but some stuff is just too hard to get into. Mr. Manson's music is exciting compared to what else is out there on the radio and TV. He makes goth palatable for those like me who're too lazy to try and understand Joy Division or Sisters of Mercy. NIN did the same thing for industrial. Skinny Puppy and Thrill Kill Cult are fine and dandy but some of it is just too eclectic, and who wants to listen to a band they >DON'T< like just so they can be cool and fit in?
Not that those aren't good bands. I prefer stuff like Mindless Self Indulgence, Inkkubus Sukkubus, Ophelia Rising, Razed in Black, VNV Nation, Cruxshadows, and the awesome japanese metal band: Malice Mizer (ironic that Manson is rumored to have consulted Mana for his fashion ideas ^.^) and us "goth" folks don't know real metal? Try SLAYER on for size and forget Slipknot ever existed.
It amazes me they STILL show the same video in youth-group and sunday school about how horrible Slayer and Dungeons and Dragons is for out prescious little children. So if the christians are still yapping about them now.. they must've done SOMETHING right. I have a wide and varied musical taste. I don't sit around all day listening to ONLY Nine Inch Nails and Marylin Manson. And I DON'T watch MTV, atleast not since the recent influx of hip-pop and the rap-rock scene.
Okay, now that I'm done ranting.
This >IS< a good album, although I do prefer their ealier stuff like "Portrait of An American Family" they were alot less produced back then and had a more realistic guitar driven sound with less synth. But that's not saying that 'Antichrist' isn't good. Some of the songs like "Tourniquet" and "Beautiful People" are very memorable. "Man That You Fear" is very sad but not as good as the Pink Floyd-ish "Speed of Pain" (compare to Comfortably Numb) from the album 'Mechanical Animals'
The other songs are good as well but most folks are too lazy to listen to an album all the way through so they never get to hear them. I love "The Reflecting God," its like Brian is talking about how he creates his own world inside his mind and in that world he is his own God and no one can touch him. He creates and destroys as he sees fit.
I love an artist who can criticize himself.
"World spreads its legs for another star."
Brian sold himself to his music and his image. He's just another star for us to crucify/sanctify and he knows full well that he is martyring himself for his cause, becoming the anti-christ that everyone loves to hate or the alledged "sell-out" that everyone loves to take shots at and he honestly doesn't give a damn what you think. In his world, you don't exist.. 'You can kill yourself now because your dead in my mind'
He does his own thing and if you like him and get the joke, that's great. If you don't understand and you protest at his concerts and blame your children's suicides/school shootings on his songs, well that's good too. No such thing as "Bad Press." Your fear and stupidity sell the records for him the same way it did for Ozzy Osbourne and Slayer. The same goes for Eminem. If the preachers and parents hate it then that gives the kiddies all the more reason to buy it, crank it loud and proud, and aggravate the heck out of you with it.
Oh c'mon.. like you didn't drive your folks crazy with KISS, Black Sabbath, or AC/DC in the 70's when you were a young'un? Back in YOUR parents' day that was theeee evil music right there *snickers* Now its in constant rotation on the Classic Rock radio stations. I wonder what my kids will be listening to when... Oh wait, I don't have any kids.. But if I did, I'd eat them with fava beans and a nice kiante.
"I've always measured sucess not only by the ammount of people that love you but the ones that hate you too. I like to provoke people so that they think. I think that's a healthy part of entertainment... that you don't get too much from the Spice Girls."
-Rev. Brian Warner, David Letterman interview.
on October 25, 2003
Now for the very small group of people that read my reviews i have stopped writing about bad cds i hate and i figured i'd write a review on an amazing cd. This was my 2nd marilyn manson ( the 1st being portrait of an american family) being the teenage metalhead i am, Marilyn manson is a dream band come true it mixes goth hrard rock with intelligence probably his heaviest cd. Holy wood in 2nd. It blew me away 1st listen every song heavy & dark as hell I'll list track ratings below..........
Irresponsible hate anthem 9/10 -When you 1s play this song you know Manson is DEAD SERIOUS about making a hard scary as hell album and this is a concept album, a perfect start to the album
The beautiful people 9/10 - The song that made MM popular not the best on the album but the lyrics are amazing but so is every song on the album
Dried up,tied up, and dead to the world 9/10 - A very gothic like feel to this song the chorus is incredible & ginger fish beats the *hit out of the drums in this one.
Tourniquet 11/10 - A great song and single i really like the rock feel that this song brings parents seemed to worry about the lyrical content in this song, give me a break...
Little horn 9/10 - This song isnt to long a little under 3 minutes but its one of the few death metal songs on this cd you can even hear the bass a bit which is rare for alot of bands lately
Cryptorchid - 8/10 - ANother gothic feel to this song a pretty mellow song i think M.W. gacy did a great job with electronics in this one
Deformography 10/10 - ANother favorite The best part of this song is vocals, lyrics,drums & electronics
WOrmboy 7/10 - Not a great song but i still like it, its decent just nothing special on it.
Mister superstar 10/10 - i like the fact that it starts out with some mellow strings but as the song goes on it gets heavier & heavier.
Anger with the scabbed wings 12/10 - a good rock song with some great lyrics by a great vocalist.
Kinderfeld 8/10 - A very emotinal song for brian warner a.k.a Marilyn manson I didn't know wh othe hell he was talking about in this one ti'll i read " the long road out of hell" written by MM himself and you find out its about his grandfather
Antichrist superstar 9/10 - Title track for this amazing piece of work heavy with overall great lyrics
1996 9/10 - As another reviewer said this is irresponsible hate anthem pt. 2
The minute of decay 8/10 - Also this has a very gothic feel i think the chorus in this one is incredible
The reflecting god 25/10 - My favorite song on this cd and the last heavy song on this album incredible drum,bass, guitars vocals everything it might even make the most die hard christian re think there religion.
Man that you fear 20/10 - ANother incredible song and the perfect end to this perfect cd slow emotinal sad & angry all at the same time and it shows MM has some serious singing talents
In conclusion this is a masterpice and will go down as one of the greatest cds of te 90's if you want to hear meaningful lyrics by a grea musician buy this and if you are a die hard christian give it a chance and don't judge a book by its cover
on October 17, 2005
It's common knowledge that Marilyn Manson's first few albums sounded like they were made by a bunch of teenagers who were doing their best to sound like a parody of themselves. But then Trent Reznor stepped into the scene and, all of the sudden, Marilyn Manson emerged with what might be the most brilliant album of their career.
Like Nine Inch Nails' 1994 album, "The Downward Spiral," this is a concept album (meaning it tells a story) which frequently has intelligent, thought-provoking lyrics. "Antichrist Superstar" supposedly tells the story of a person who is dead inside (this person is referred to as "The Worm") who is in love with a self-abusive rock star. But there is dispute among fans about what the story is, because, unlike "The Downward Spiral," "Antichrist Superstar" is deliberately vague; it lets the fans put their own meanings to most of the songs.
The musicianship on here isn't the best you'll ever hear; the guitars mainly just buzz or beep and make sound effects, and the drum beats are usually simple and thrown in for background noise. Fortunately, "Antichrist Superstar" has enough stellar songwriting to make up for the not-so-special music. Plus, vocalist Marilyn Manson uses a very wide range of vocal pitches, styles, and tones. He can go from whispering to singing to high pitched vocals to yelling...all in the same song!
The album opener, "Irresponsible Hate Anthem," begins with the sound of a crowd cheering. Then the actual song begins and, during the verses, Marilyn kind of sings in a way that he sounds like Trent Reznor. The choruses are heavy, though; the heavy guitars kick in and Manson yells "F*** it!"
Track two, "The Beautiful People," is Manson's first ever hit single. Plus, with only one drum beat (which sounds like Middle Eastern drums at times) and a few crunchy riffs, this is also one of the simplest but catchiest tunes Manson ever wrote.
"Little Horn" combines fast, churning riffs with creepy whispers. At one moment, it sounds like Manson is sneering and almost choking, but the next moment, he's yelling.
"Cryporchid" has animated sounding synthesizers while Manson is using a vocal harmonizer. Manson's vocals briefly stop, an organ starts playing, and finally a weird voice (which sort of sounds like a fairy) takes over the track, and repeats the line: "Prick your finger, it is done; the moon has now eclipsed the sun. The angel has spread its wings, the time has come for better things." This part of the song, which is about Satanism, will get stuck in your head, whether you want it to or not.
"Kinderfeld" is about Manson's childhood. The line "he turns his trains on" refers to Manson's grandfather, who would pretend to be playing with his train set in the basement, but he would really be doing something perverted.
The title track is very catchy. It has catchy, beeping guitars, which make a "boom boom" sound, then pause briefly for a shout along of: "Hey!"
"!996" has creepy, foreboding lyrics like "here is my anti-president gun." But this track stands out because it has an irresistible, fist pumping chorus: "Anti people now you've gone too far/here's your antichrist superstar!"
"Minute of Decay" is a cool piano ballad, but the next track, "Reflecting God," is heavy, again (it has an enjoyable bobbing chorus). Lyrically, "Reflecting God" amusingly compares "our world" to an ashtray.
Now, since "Antichrist Superstar" has a pretty strong anti-Christian message, many people have never given this disc a fair spin. This is too bad, because this album is very smart, a good rock album, and a great industrial album. It isn't for everyone (i.e. little kids and suicidals should steer clear of it), but, no matter what you think of Marilyn Manson, if you're a rock fan, you owe it to yourself to check this C.D. out. It's a great starting point if you're new to the band, and if you only get one Manson album, this is the one to get.
on June 1, 2001
You have to keep an open mind in listening to a Marilyn Manson record. That is, if you're not one of the dedicated Mansonites who routinely dye their hair black and make trips to the mall all that much scarier. But I digress...
As someone who primarily enjoys hip-hop and other black music, Marilyn Manson is a bit of a stretch. He's very white and very angry. But as I forked over my $ (...), I kept thinking, "Keep an open mind." And as I popped it in the car for the ride home, I prepared myself for the worst: an all-out non-musical assault, with more distortion than a fun-house mirror. But no. What I got was a crowd chanting (I think) "We hate love... we love hate..." I was a little worried, but I pressed on.
The opener, "Irresponsible Hate Anthem," is a pretty good song. It's got a hard-rocking riff, an up-tempo beat, and lyrics that, while they do aim to shock, are meant to be pondered as well. Manson always lays out grand plans for all his albums, each one a concept and part of a bigger picture. But unless you're one of the above-mentioned hardcore fans, you'll never get the full message.
What I focused on is the talent within the music and vocals. It's pretty ample, I must say. "Antichrist Superstar" was produced by Manson and Trent Reznor, and they give the music a muddy-synthetic, paranoid quality that matches Manson's shifting volume, going from a deathly quiet murmur to a metal-grating scream in mere seconds.
As I saw it, the whole album was about a metamorphosis of sorts, from worm to butterfly. Songs like "Cryptorchid," with references to worms, boys, and rape, and titles like "Kinderfeld" and "Man That You Fear" (whose tag is "the boy you love's become the man that you fear") all point to a major statement about coming into your own. Manson just does it with spooky synthesizers, distorted metal riffs and crashing drums.
There's a certain creepiness to this album that makes it different from the normal electro-metal record. Marilyn Manson, despite his mission to shock America and indeed the world, is a clever guy, and his lyrics prove it. He's not just screaming "Kill your mom, eat your children, have sex with corpses." And if he DOES do it, it's to make you think.
This is an interesting record, but like I said, you have to keep an open mind. If for no other reason, pick it up to prove to yourself that he's not the devil.
on February 7, 2001
Marilyn Manson continues to amaze me with his music. I call him the "Savior" of Rock music. His newest work, "Holy Wood...In the Shadow Of The Valley Of Death" is absolutely amazing and kind of, in a very small way, brings me to discussing this superb, awesome, album. First of all, there is a distinct difference between this album and his most recent one in that he was thinking along very different lines and his life was very different then, than it is now. During "Antichrist Superstar", he was with "the dark side", if you will. Now, he has "seen the light" which started with "Mechanical Animals" and continued with "Holy Wood....". He's awesome! And NO, he's not just for teenagers.
Now let me discuss specifically about "Antichrist Superstar". This is one of his most awesome albums to date and one of his most awesome albums ever recorded. His voice is all-powerful in this album that it's almost indescribable! One great thing about his music, and he'd hate me for saying this, is that he mixes humor with hardcoreness perfectly. NOBODY else does that. This fact is none more evident than in this album. It's hilarious and HARDCORE at the same time. The funniest song and also one of the heaviest songs in this album is the song 'Angel With The Scabbed Wings'. This song is so hilarious and so heavy at the same time. It's awesome. One of the best songs he's ever made is on this album, too. This is the title track, 'Antichrist Superstar'. It is a progressive song and it's mindblowing. When you listen to this album from beginning to end (which is how you should listen to it, and all of his albums) it's like reading a book. Each song is like a chapter in a book, from one chapter to the next. He is absolutely awesome for constructing his albums in such a strict, rigid, controlling manner like this. It makes for an awesome listening experience. In this album, he is aware that now all of the world is looking at him like he is a rock 'n roll superstar, totally famous, and he doesn't like that and doesn't like himself for that. He even just doesn't like himself, period. He says, "...I wish I was dead." quietly in one of the songs. He calls himself an "...idiot who will not be himself" in the first song. But this theme about his bad, dumb self dramatically changes in his next album and subsequent (most recent) album. His eerie rock instrumentals and sound effects in this album is absolutely awesome and mesmerizing to me. Marilyn Manson is an incredible songwriter, singer, and musician. Moreover, he trains his band really well, almost excruciatingly well. I would recommend this album to anyone who loves Hard Rock music with humor in it. All hail and praise to Marilyn Manson, even though he doesn't want it.