First, a confession. I feel uncomfortable reviewing Marilyn Manson’s “The Pale Emperor.” I mean, I’m thirty six, for christ’s sake. Haven’t we outgrown the shock rocker of the 90s, and the androgynous king of self indulgence that followed in the 00s, finally bottoming out in almost overnight, Robert Smithesque debauch that spurned on memes like:
Well. Haven’t we all outgrown it?
I think that’s precisely the point. You get the sense throughout this album of a kind of dawning, bleary eyed sobriety. The album gets more raw as it goes. Seven days? Imagine waking up from a twenty year long binge. And your alter ego once took control of the airwaves, it took over your personal life, and only when that was smoking wreckage did you manage to take a look backward and see the alter ego staring back at you. And on the other hand is the ever immanent grave.… Read the rest