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Marilyn Manson Eat Me, Drink Me

One has to wonder exactly how the self proclaimed “God of Fuck” fits in to the ‘noughties’ — an era where one can view hardcore sex and drugs on television and read about the latest supposed terrorist act before leaving for work/school/whatever else in the morning. The sad fact is, he doesn’t. People just aren’t as easily shocked any more: the days where Manson could rip out songs such as ‘Antichrist Superstar’ or ‘Cake and Sodomy’ and expect a serious reaction are long gone, and it shows. That’s not to stop a man from trying, though, and try he does…

Murder cute happy rape/murder cute happy happy rape/killer— You and Me and the Devil Makes 3

The above quote, amusingly enough, sums up most of Eat Me, Drink Me, and exposes the album for what it truly is — Manson jumping around, yelling “HEY GUYS, I’M STILL CONTROVERSIAL, I’M STILL FREAKY! C’MON, SOMEONE PAY ATTENTION TO ME!” Where once lay witty, cutting edge lyrics filled with puns and Nietzschean references, we have… that. Even the names themselves feel like painful self-parodies (‘If I Was Your Vampire,’ ‘They Say That Hell’s Not Hot’). I was about halfway through the album, when finally it hit me: Manson’s best albums have sprawling concepts and story lines, this I already knew… but the main idea of EM,DM is Manson himself.

The lowest point of the album, however, comes in the first single, ‘Heart-Shaped Glasses (When the Heart Guides the Hand)’. The fact that it sounds like ‘Panic! At the Disco’ on steroids is bad enough, but when Manson bizarrely begins to croak “don’t break, don’t break my heart, and I won’t break your heart-shaped glasses” over the chorus, one can either laugh or cry.1 The worst thing about it all is that he’s not even being ironic; he truly believes that, in this day and age, he can turn a handful of diary entries about his divorce and subsequent Lolita-esque affair into songs and call it a record. He spends half the album trying to convince the audience he possesses a previously unseen emotional depth, and the other half desperately attempting to reclaim his youth.

That’s not to say that Eat Me, Drink Me is all bad. There are some fantastic songs — ‘Are You The Rabbit?’ recalls his Mechanical Animals-era glam stage, ‘Putting Holes in Happiness’ (despite the ridiculous name) is a pounding freight train, and the titular track closes the record in a downright eerie fashion — but it’s too little, too sparse, too late. The fact that the aforementioned songs all recall earlier stages in Manson’s vast career does not bode well. When you get down to it, Eat Me, Drink Me is a muddle… a muddle that by all rights should have been far, far better.

YAY: ‘Are You The Rabbit?’, ‘Eat Me, Drink Me’ — both tracks supposedly based on Alice in Wonderland. Both prove my hypothesis that he works best when he doesn’t allow his own life to “inspire” his music.

NAY: ‘If I Was Your Vampire’ (sprawling six-minute epic track of Manson whining about Dita von Teese), ‘Just a Car Crash Away’ (and I quote: “love is a fire/burns down all that it sees/burns down everything/everything you think burns down/everything you feel/burns down/everything you think” ad nauseum), ‘Heart-Shaped Glasses’ (MANSON: LOL I R DATIN A TEENRGR <33333).

  1. The music video is even better; Marilyn and Evan Rachel Woods having unconvincing sex in a rain of blood. Beautiful.
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