The old saying, "You can't go home again" has always held true. Many have tried, college drop outs, artists, teeny bopper parents and even presidents but none have succeeded. Sometimes it is a catastrophe like Spielberg's excrutiatingly mediocre sequel Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
. Other times it can be not a little less painful like Marilyn Manson's latest record, The High End of Low
, which finds Manson making up with writing partner Twiggy Ramirez and returning to 1998, or at least attempting to.The High End of the Low
is a decent album that tries to fit itself somewhere between Holywood and Mechanical Animals but never quite makes it. Back in the late 90's Manson was still public enemy number one and had no trouble courting controversy. However around 2002 He split up with his long time writing partner Twiggy Ramirez and replaced him with KMFDM collaborator Tim Skold. That partnership ended with the excruciatingly bad 80's goth pop-esque "Eat me, Drink Me"
High End of The Low is a nice try but too little, too late. Songs like Pretty as a ($)
, We're From America
, and Arma-Goddamn-motherfuckin-geddon
try to be the hard rock anthems that Manson has been very good at in the past but they just don't ever seem to reach the level of Beautiful People
or Rock is Dead
The album opener, Devour
doesn't really start things off on the best footing since it sounds like somehting left over from Eat Me, Drink me. Then there is the hevily repetive Four Rusted Horses
and the overly long I want to Kill you Like in the Movies
that clocks in at 9 minutes. There's and abundance of songs that are more aimed at humanizing the monster. But does anyone in this country still think Manson is the antichrist? The songs that do try to capture that evil and scary sound from Antichrist Superstar seem like imitations and bad ones at that.
While High End of the Low
is definetly a return to the Manson of the 90's, it falls short of offering anything new. Manson had some great albums where he was able to re-invent himself over and over again, but now he may be running out of lives. Perhaps it really boils down to what kind of fan you are as to whether you like this record. Fans of AntiChrist Superstar
, and Holywood
will probably appreciate the effort but delete it from there playlist after a few listens. Fans of the later Albums such as Mechanical Animals
and Golden age of the Grotesque
may like what they find here.
I guess for me I just like my Manson scary, mysterious, and very evil and The High End of Low
Fails on all 3 counts.
5.5 out of 10