Marilyn Manson

Album Review: Marilyn Manson – Born Villain

We could probably argue for a while over where it all went wrong for Marilyn Manson. Maybe it was the world’s fault for not finding him shocking anymore; or maybe it was because he stopped utilising massively awesome riffs (Manson himself should listen to ‘Holy Wood’ sometime) and replaced them with weak sounding synths.

Either way, Manson hasn’t been critically acclaimed for anything in a decade. Is it worth paying attention now for the release of his 8th album ‘Born Villain’?

Maybe. While the promise of “suicide death metal” from the man himself was predictably bullshit, the change of pace and tone is certainly commendable. While his previous two albums in particular sounded both boring and lazy, ‘Born Villain’ sounds like Manson is actually enjoying making music again.
Marilyn Manson Born Villain Artwork
While I’m sure he wouldn’t appreciate the comparison, there are more than just a few Nine Inch Nails-like numbers in here, none more so than the standout ‘Murderers Are Getting Prettier Every Day.’ It harkens back to the ‘Mechanical Animals’ days, and when you consider his recent releases, it’s a welcome return for Manson’s confidence, aggression and glam.

Lead single ‘No Reflection’ is a fair representation of the album. The sinister riffing of Twiggy constantly behind Manson’s vocals adds a spooky atmosphere that has been missing of late, and the inclusion of frequent vocal melodies has paid off greatly. ‘Slo-Mo-Tion’ has a chorus that sounds painful without Manson having to howl, layered over an industrial creeping rhythm.

It wouldn’t be hard to top ‘Eat Me, Drink Me’ and ‘The High End of Low.’ Impressively, ‘Born Villain’ may be good enough for fans to forget they ever happened. The intimidating figure from the turn of the century may be gone, but if his future releases are as strong as this then his career could be far from over.

Rating – 6


About Scott Wilson

Having spent the last twenty years of his life telling his friends his opinion of the latest release by every band he has ever heard of, Scott is an enthusiastic journalist and keen writer. A fan of every genre of music, though his heart firmly belongs to rock, he has been spending far too much money on gigs and not enough on digs. Reachable by either email or Twitter where copious amounts of commentating and general excitement can also be found.

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