Having highly enjoyed Manson's breakthrough album "Antichrist Superstar" I was initially skeptical about their other releases which fell far behind the commercial success of Antichrist. I was quickly reminded that sales are no indication of the content as this album quickly grabbed my attention and took me on a ride, before i knew it i was hooked. My preconceptions were shattered and what initially struck me about this album has become very clear after several spins.
On this record the band as a whole move in a much more focused and expressive direction with Manson stepping up his game vocally, his presence is stronger and lyrically his poetry hits home hard with some deep messages and ideas. A couple of moments stuck in my mind, on the track "Coma White" he expresses a sorrowful message about self destructive personalities through an unforgeable chorus "A pill to make you numb, a pill to make you dumb...." its a dark realization delivered in a sing along format that ends the album on a emotional deep. On the track "Mechanical Animals" Manson chimes in beautifully with the soaring guitar riff in a heart in mouth moment. Across these songs his artistic expression is deep and meaningful, delivered with more sensibility.
Instrumentally the band are right behind him, moving the direction away from the metallic Industrial sound, more towards an Alternative Metal / Rock sound with the Industrial element paining intricate sounds and details along side the core instruments. At times the songwriting is pure class, forging charactered songs that compliment Manson well. For example "The Dope Show" has a brooding base line that builds a shady atmosphere with some unusual synthetic sounds, painting a vivid picture in the listeners mind. Theres a lot to talk about as many of these songs have great creativity in the instrumentals. Production wise everything sounds fantastic, in general i was blown away by this album and looking forward to Holy Wood.
Favorite Songs: The Dope Show, Mechanical Animals, Disassociative, User Friendly, Coma White