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Album review: The Pale Emperor by Marilyn Manson

The Pale Emperor is Marilyn Manson's ninth album, and one of his best in 15 years.
The Pale Emperor is Marilyn Manson's ninth album, and one of his best in 15 years.

The Pale Emperor

Marilyn Manson

(Hell, etc)

Three stars

While he remains a headline-grabbing figure in rock-music circles, the common consensus is that the thin white duke of darkness, Marilyn Manson, hasn’t made a genuinely good LP for more than 15 years. The title of his ninth album’s opening track, Killing Strangers, suggests that he still has controversy-courting intentions. Yet with an almost-bluesy croon added to Manson’s misanthropic croak, it seems that he’s keener on crafting fully formed songs than with pushing Middle America’s buttons. Deep Six confirms this, wielding a confident glam-rock stomp. Odds of Even demonstrates a rare subtlety – it’s almost a ballad. Manson returns to his a long-running fixation with the City of Angels on The Mephistopheles of Los Angeles, albeit with refrains that he’s “ready to meet my maker”. And though there’s hardly a hint of the dangerous industrial-rock edge that made Manson infamous, there’s just enough guile here to hint that the 46-year-old isn’t about to shuffle off into the sunset just yet.

This album is available on Amazon.

aworkman@thenational.ae

Published: February 2, 2015 04:00 AM

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