Earlier today, an old friend of mine Tweeted, "Hey Marilyn Manson, 1995 called. They want their Metal Zone back." My friend is a guitar player and was referring to the eardrum-grating guitar pedal used by novice rockers to achieve a sort of '90s rock distortion.
He and I come from a similar background, one in which we were programmed by our parents and youth pastors to think that Marilyn Manson is bad. By now, both of us have adjusted well enough and know that the whole Manson Anti-Christ thing is just a bit, but it's hard to shake that original sentiment completely. I sensed a little bit of it in his tweet.
I replied, "You have to admit, 'The Beautiful People' was kind of a jam."
I hadn't heard the song in years, but I pulled it up on Spotify and checked just to be sure. Yep, it's still kind of a jam. Especially that breakdown part that comes right after the choruses. That was the part that hooked me years ago when I watched a live performance of Marilyn Manson on MTV (totally against the rules of my house) when I was in high school.
There was nothing else on TV that afternoon, so I just decided not to change the channel and watch the performance. Besides, there was something intriguing about Manson, even though his brand of commercial shock rock never really resonated with me, and still really hasn't. It was about the spectacle and little more. Probably why he's playing the club circuit now, rather than the arena tours he did a decade ago.
That huge breakdown part came up in the song and it caught me off guard. "This is awesome," I thought, though I would never actually admit it to anyone until just now. I went out to the garage and figured out the drum part on my beat up set of black Ludwigs, jumping the rhythm just like it does on the song.
Come to think of it, I've probably nicked that rhythm and used it on the drums during a church service. I wonder what my youth pastor would think.
Marilyn Manson will be at the Palladium Ballroom on Friday, May 11.