Marilyn Manson – The Pale Emperor


The Pale Emperor


Cooking Vinyl Australia




For Fans Of

Nine Inch Nails, Queens of the Stone Age


The audio equivalent of saying his name three times into a mirror.


92 / 100

If you are anything like us, you may have lost faith in Marilyn Manson, whether it was due to drifting away from his albums as they slowly became mere repetitions of themselves, or his woeful Soundwave performances that made it seem like the musician really wasn’t that interested in being Marilyn Manson anymore.

Maybe thanks, in part, to his jail stint in Sons of Anarchy, or maybe just as a consequence to finding new thrills that can once again give him a high, Manson seems to have returned to his former glory on ninth studio album, ‘The Pale Emperor.’

Opening with a stomp that gives you an idea of what The Black Keys would sound like if they went a little goth. Killing Strangers is a cool, laidback track in which Manson shows of his matured, strained vocals which has him sounding the best he ever has while drawing lyrical influence from America’s ever-ongoing gun issues, something which the frontman is no stranger to after his music ridiculously being blamed for shootings in the past.

From here an older ‘Mechanical Animals’ style Manson reveals itself on Deep Six. Creepy guitar lines, which turn into distorted stabs and Manson‘s screams help everything fall back into a low grumble without warning. For the initiated it’s familiar territory but with a sense of attack that hasn’t been heard in this camp for awhile.

Musically, this may be one of the most eerie Manson records. The guitars maintain a certain element of scare and gore which offset perfectly on the man’s vocals. Warship My Wreck is a good example, it creeps along at a dragging pace allowing the vocal lines to push to their limits while the guitars stand behind like the grim reaper.

The album is not without a certain element of groove however, songs like Third Day of a Seven Day Binge and The Devil Beneath My Feet make it seem as though Manson wants to dance every now on then. This is Marilyn Manson style dance though, it’s dark, but it’s sexy and easily some of the record’s highlighted moments.

Closing with Odds of Even, it is a scary clown, haunted house moment. Imagine walking through a house while ghouls who are dressed extremely well sing you this song with grins on their faces while they lead you deeper and deeper into their never-ending pit of gloom. This is how Manson chooses to leave you this time.


He may have lost his way, or his passion, for a little bit there, but Marilyn Manson seems reinvigorated and intent on creeping the hell out of you on ‘The Pale Emperor.’ This is a record that combines the elements about him you love, with a few new tricks and modern touches, to make itself one of the finest in his large catalogue.


1. Killing Strangers

2. Deep Six

3. Third Day of a Seven Day Binge

4. The Mephistopheles of Los Angeles

5. Warship My Wreck

6. Slave Only Dreams to be King

7. The Devil Beneath My Feet

8. Birds of Hell Awaiting

9. Cupid Carries A Gun

10. Odds of Even


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