Marilyn Manson
Holy Wood
(Nothing/Interscope 490790)

When I first started this review, I began with an overly long philosophical discussion focusing on Manson's use of his life as art and his references to Nietzsche. I thought it would be a good idea to shed some light upon the veil of confusion and fear Manson has purposefully cast over his career in order to make himself the Antichrist of American culture while at the same time making himself enormously popular.

I really feel that Marilyn's message is quite deep and ultimately important. The trilogy of discs that concludes with Holy Wood (and began with Antichrist Superstar and Mechanical Animals), is possibly one of the most interesting post-existentialist works by a living American artist. It is certainly one of the most cerebral works by a supposed rock star.

In my original review, I explored the way he integrates Nietzsche into his work. I focused on the way the "Over-Man" theme is imbued into the three works by following the steps outlined by Nietzsche:

  1. Self-discovery and near enlightenment, followed by a reactionary confusion and irresponsible rage (Antichrist Superstar, where Manson played the title character)
  2. A period of extreme self-loathing and contempt (Mechanical Animals, where Manson played Omega)
  3. Final understanding and enlightenment (Holy Wood, where Manson finally plays himself)
Upon re-reading my two-page review (which was nowhere near complete), I realized how fantastically boring it was. 99% of the fans that would actually buy Holy Wood have no interest in this type of dialogue. I began to wonder if Manson was indeed preaching to deaf ears. So, to help Manson's record sales, I'm taking a different approach …

Holy Wood fucking rocks! It starts off with some kickass tunes like the shit he did on Antichrist. "The Love Song," "The Fight Song," and "Disposable Teens" wipe the floor with any of that weird glam shit from Mechanical Animals. Fucking-A!

Things get a little downbeat after that with a series of creepy power ballads. But hey man, don't think Manson's lost his fucking edge!! No fucking way! He'll kick all of yer asses! And then fuck yer asses too! Fuck yeah!

Things get back to rocking with "The Death Song" and the ballbusting "Burning Flag." After this rock-out-the-fucking-wazoo death match, things get really fucked up with "Coma Black" and "Valentines Day" and keeps kinda weird until the end of the album.

But dOOd! Most of the album fucking rocks! Buy it and remember: WE HATE LOVE! WE LOVE HATE!

Booo-ya! I dispense with the Loud Bassoon rating scale and award Holy Wood Seven Gun-Wielding Monkeys.

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Review by Dr. Martin Absinthe