Following up 2017 release Heaven Upside Down with his 11th studio album, the ‘God of Fuck’ wrote, recorded, and finished the album before the Covid-19 pandemic shrouded the world whilst also providing the cover art with his own painting ‘Infinite Darkness’. This concept album is said to have a side A and B and Manson states to have to say to himself “Tame your crazy, stitch your suit and pretend that you are not an animal.” So just how much crazy have been tamed?
As the album begins and the sounds of Manson’s narration begins, there is a feeling of impending doom, something that he has been known for previously and as the music kicks in, the powerful drums are met with some traditional sounding striking guitars as ’Red Black and Blue’ powers us back to an era of old MM, this is a very strong start to the album.
As the album progresses we have the previously released ‘We Are Chaos’ a predominantly acoustic offering and the also released ‘Don’t Chase The Dead’ which has more on a Depeche Mode vibe to it, whilst still be provoking and disturbing.
This shift in music styles is one that the album does throughout as there are aspects of all previous albums released by Manson, but this is something that also tends to go with concept albums and. H no means makes it bad, I think it’s fair to say that is anyone every expected another Antichrist Superstar, then they have not followed the evolution of the man.
The album does not progress through the styles either, it goes back and forth, incorporating the many different styles and influences that Manson has both drawn on and expressed previously whilst also maintaining that disturbing edge. Yes, it is not so outwardly insulting or abusive, but more on a psychological level now as the lyrics get you thinking about things maybe didn’t you never thought of before and probably didn’t want to.
If you have come in We Are Chaos expecting a Smells Like Children or even a Holy Wood then please accept that the evolution of the man has passed those times, however, those times have helped to build what is released today and therefore there are the odd influences thrown in. It appears that Manson now favours the more dark and subtle approach than full-on outrage but be sick and twisted base is very much still there, just displayed in a different way. A way that in some ways is more disturbing than the days of old as this way gets into your head without realizing. If an album could be a psychologic thriller then the title would be We Are Chaos.
We Are Chaos is out now on Loma Vista Records.
1. RED BLACK AND BLUE
2. WE ARE CHAOS
3. DON’T CHASE THE DEAD
4. PAINT YOU WITH MY LOVE
5. HALF-WAY & ONE STEP FORWARD
6. INFINITE DARKNESS
8. KEEP MY HEAD TOGETHER
9. SOLVE COAGULA
10. BROKEN NEEDLE