I have my own terribly biased opinions on Marilyn Manson’s new album, but that’ll be covered further down. First, a compilation of links to interviews from the current era and reviews of the album by various critics. This blog post is in celebration of the official release of Born Villain and its rightful status as one of the top albums on iTunes; it took the #3 spot on the iTunes “Top 100 Albums Chart” on the day of its release and held through May 2nd. As of May 3rd, it’s #5 on the chart.
By Abbey Goodman, posted May 1st
UMG (Universal Music Germany) Interview
By UMG, video posted April 25th
Marilyn Manson on Born Villain, the “Celebrity Era,” and How He Got His “Stones Back”
By Marc Spitz, posted April 23rd
Artist Direct News Album Review
By Rick Florino, posted May 1st
The Wild Poets Project Track-by-Track Album Review
By The Wild Poets Project, put on youtube April 30th
New Adventures in Hi-Fi Album Review
By James, posted April 30th
GigWise Album Review: “Could easily be considered one of Manson’s best productions to date.”
By Flora Neighbour, posted April 30th
Sputnik Music Album Review
By Jeremy Bentham, posted April 25th
In My Own Words
If I had to rate this album from one to five, I’d give it a five easy. I think that this is definately one of his best albums, if not the best. I’ve never really been able to settle on a favorite Manson album before (and still can’t settle on any single piece when it comes to the songs), but now that his latest one is out I can definitively say I have one now: Born Villain. There are a few songs I like less than others, but in my honest opinion every single one on here is fucking brilliant.
Hey Cruel World…, the first track, just seems to dive right in, which isn’t unprecedented (ref. Irresponsible Hate Anthem, Great Big White World, If I Was Your Vampire). But even though there’s no introductory track like Prelude (The Family Trip) or Thaeter in the quiet sense, the beginnings of a few songs are reminiscent of a sort of mini-prelude, such as the recitation of lines from Macbeth in Overneath the Path of Misery. Or in the first few seconds of The Gardener… though short, the first, “I’m not man enough to be human, but I’m trying to fit in, and I’m learning to fake it,” is spoken in much the same way as is done with the Shakespeare quote.
The Gardener itself is a mostly spoken song that I look at as one of Manson’s most insightful commentaries on the nature of relationships since User Friendly (See “She is doomed to be your idea of her/Your book isn’t burned, it was never written” from Gardener compared to “‘I’m not in love, but I’m gonna fuck you, ’till somebody better comes along’/Use me like I was a whore, Relationships are such a bore, Delete the ones that you’ve fucked” from User Friendly). Of course, I think that can be interpreted as applying to more than just the obvious relationship angle.
To me, it seems that parallels can readily be drawn to connect it with his best works of the past; synthesized, with little elements throughout that remind me of Portrait, Mechanical Animals, Antichrist, etc., yet they’re integrated as part of an album that’s set apart, an album that stands alone as something all its own, something new. All in all, I think this album is fucking awesome (see the first paragraph up top, referencing my bias).
Official Born Villain era Sites – Marilyn Manson.com and Born Villain.com
Marilyn Manson’s Official Website
This is the artists main site, recently revamped to reflect the current era in imagery, ambience, format, and overall aesthetic changes. It includes his journal, upcoming tour dates, photography, paintings, a full catalogue of music videos spanning his career, and a few more things here and there.
Born Villain | Lyrics, Videos, Etc.
A “sister site” to MarilynManson.com, this site originally housed the Born Villain short film directed by Shia LaBeouf. In the absence of a Lyric Booklet to accompany physical copies of the album, the CD case directs its buyers to this site for lyrics. Videos tieing into the album, including the short film, the music video for the lead single No Reflection, and the short “I Am Among No One” teaser clip can be found here.