Since the band's inception in 1989, Marilyn Manson the group and the singer its named after have earned a reputation as artists who consistently deliver entertainment that shocks the status quo in popular music. After nearly two decades of high voltage rock and roll drenched in social commentary you might be left wondering how the band could possibly offer anything substantially innovative while maintaining the integrity of their own style. That's precisely what I worried over myself.

Rest assured that 'Eat Me, Drink Me' not only upholds the core appeal of Manson's previous musical endeavors, it turns the screw in dynamic, unexpected ways. After all, what we've got here is a band thrust forward into the spotlight with a brand of alternative rock that not only challenged conventional values of American culture, but willfully stepped across the boundaries of then accepted artistic expression. What's left for an artist who took on religious leaders, celebrity cult worship and the government itself? The answer's deceptively simple: love and relationships.

That's right, this, the sixth studio album from Marilyn Manson, strips the lead performer down to the basest level of human emotions. Having gone through a painful divorce with his former wife Dita Von Teese and lost his best friend and artistic partner Twiggy Ramirez to 'other projects' (namely, A Perfect Circle), Marilyn Manson's personal life had been scorched to ashes so the only opportunity left to him was to rise up like the proverbial Phoenix and re-create himself and the image of his band.

What you have in this album is a refreshingly raw singing style from the lead and a deep, complex sonic framework laid out by Tim Skold who stepped in to replace Ramirez. The two primary singles, 'If I Was Your Vampire' and 'Heart-Shaped Glasses (When the Heart Guides the Hand)' cut deeply at the emotional core with a blade refined in the furnace of personal chaos. These are not merely hard rock tunes, they are absolutely pop tunes which reinforces what Manson's always claimed to be: a pop musician. Not only do the lyrics deliver catchy, clever refrains they maintain the band's commitment to delivering unpopular messages in an attractive package.

Speaking of packages, the visual artwork which accompanies the album absolutely adds to the experience by showing a brand new Manson re-conceived with a heavier emphasis on his role as an artist rather than simply a performer. Photography that captures the mind and reinforces a bleak, casually hellish emotional state through an infusion of bold, warm colors rather than the somewhat fascistic coldness evident in earlier albums' artwork. There's a definite nod to Manson's Alice in Wonderland fetish not only in the album's title, but also in the song 'Are You the Rabbit?' Songs like 'Red Carpet Grave', 'Putting Holes in Happiness' and 'Mutilation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery' display a playful quality that keeps sanity present in an otherwise emotionally-charged offering.

I have to say that this album stands entirely on its own and if you're expecting a cookie-cutter copy of the band's previous work that's not going to be what you get. Yes, the authenticity of Manson's trademark double-speak and layers of interpretation are woven throughout this CD, but at the same time he's coming from a different place than in prior recordings and he's speaking to a different facet of the human existence. Skold's guitar work is nothing short of brilliant and there are as many head-banging moments as there are tracks that inspire dancing so regardless of where your tastes lie in terms of Manson's past work you're very likely to find at least a few tunes that suit you. The entire CD is cohesive and listening to it from start to finish certainly provides a much clearer look at what Manson's conveying which is his own personal experience that at the same time touches all of us because we've all loved and lost in some form or another.

In the end, 'Eat Me, Drink Me' scores a direct hit on the multiple targets of depth, emotion, style and meanings that all artists strive to strike when they produce a work of art. Even if you've not been a Manson fan up until now I've introduced several new fans to his work by this CD alone so I feel strongly that you should give it a spin and see if it might not win you over, too.

All hail the man who would not be destroyed, for he stands as proof that each of us can rise again from the defeats that life may hand us!


Lyrics submitted by mike

Marilyn Manson - Eat Me, Drink Me song meanings
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    General CommentI'm SO happy when other people appreciate Manson (ALL of manson) like this. Nothing irritates me more than a bad review because people can't come to terms with the fact that Manson isn't always going to be the Antichrist Superstar. I personally am in love with every single era of his, all for different reasons. I love Holy Wood, Mechanical Animals, and AS. But, his newer works amaze me even more. I could sit here and rant forever on how amazing Golden Age, Eat Me Drink Me, and High End of Low all are. Basically, Manson has proved to be a chamelion of a musician that can produce amazing works of art no matter how he wants to be seen..as a devil, heart breaker, one who has his heart broken, a broken person. Anything. And it all works exceptionally for him, there isn't a single aspect of Manson that I'm not completely in love with. <3
    alisonnx3on November 22, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI'm SO happy when other people appreciate Manson (ALL of manson) like this. Nothing irritates me more than a bad review because people can't come to terms with the fact that Manson isn't always going to be the Antichrist Superstar. I personally am in love with every single era of his, all for different reasons. I love Holy Wood, Mechanical Animals, and AS. But, his newer works amaze me even more. I could sit here and rant forever on how amazing Golden Age, Eat Me Drink Me, and High End of Low all are. Basically, Manson has proved to be a chamelion of a musician that can produce amazing works of art no matter how he wants to be seen..as a devil, heart breaker, one who has his heart broken, a broken person. Anything. And it all works exceptionally for him, there isn't a single aspect of Manson that I'm not completely in love with. <3
    alisonnx3on November 22, 2009   Link

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