The Twins Of Evil – Marilyn Manson & Rob Zombie

Twins of Evil - Hovet, Stockholm 5th December 2012Hovet, Stockholm, 2012-12-05

When the two horror rockers Manson and Zombie declared that they would tour together, on paper it  looked like a match made in heaven (or Hell, maybe). But as we all knew that the two masters of shock really can’t stand each other, it wasn’t even close to obvious that the tour would run smoothly. But for the most part, the tour has been running without any major head butts, although there has been some name calling from the stage a little now and then. For me, who has never seen Manson live and Zombie only in the light of day, it would be the first time I would catch their live show the way it was supposed to. First of all, I thought it was a bit strange that Manson played before Zombie as I have always thought that Manson is the biggest selling artist of the two of them, but it turned out that Manson got the opening slot while Zombie played as headline. It was first when this spectacle had ended that I realised why the running order was the way it was. More of that later.

Marilyn Manson opened up the show and my first thought was that he looked both tired and jaded. The sound was pretty bad and the fact that they were only four guys on stage a whole lot of the music and vocals were on backing tracks, a thing they didn’t even try to hide. It looks pretty weird when you can hear the backing vocals, but no one on stage is singing. It wasn’t all bad though. Songs like “Coma White”, “The Dope Show” and “Beautiful People” worked very well and he got crowd singing their hearts out to “Sweet Dreams”. But a killer song like “mOBSCENE” was completely destroyed. Manson didn’t even bother to sing parts of that song, which is a shame as it is one of his finest tunes. The show itself were good and somewhat lavish, but the fact is, I had expected more in that department as well. To sum it up, Manson’s gig tonight was disappointing, but not entirely bad.

Check out the review of Marilyn Manson “Born Villain” album >>>

Rob Zombie, on the other hand, did everything right this evening. From opener “Jesus Frankenstein” to the encore “Dragula”, he showed everybody how a true professional works an arena. Where Manson hardly said a single word between songs, Zombie’s stage rap was both funny and crowd pleasing. His band, which consists of both John 5 (guitar) and Ginger Fish (drums) who used to play with Manson, together with bassist Piggy D, who really wants to be Nikki Sixx, were tight and put on a great performance, something that Manson’s anonymous band didn’t achieve. The sound was lots better and his show looked very expensive, with shitloads of screens and monsters running around the stage. Zombie also knows how to entertain a crowd while a dull guitar solo takes place. He simply ran out in the audience and up the stairs where people were seated. Zombie’s songs are perfect for a live situation, they’re all groovy, heavy, melodic and even danceable and it’s hard to both sit and stand still when those are played. And he did play all of the songs we all wanted to hear. “Superbeast”, “Living Dead Girl”, “Meet The Creeper”, “Mars Needs Women” and “Scum Of The Earth”and of course “More Human Than Human” and “Thunder Kiss ’65” by his former band White Zombie.  The only negative thing I can think of is why he had to play a completely useless cover of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman”. The cover of Alice Cooper’s “School’s Out” feels a bit more natural as The Coop is one of Zombie’s big heroes, but I would have preferred two more original Zombie tunes instead. “Spookshow Baby” and “Feel So Numb”, maybe?

As I wrote in the beginning, after the show it was pretty clear why Rob Zombie got the headline spot. I think that even Manson knew that he could never compete with Rob Zombie’s show and the whole thing would have been a big anti climax if the running order had been the other way around. But I’m still wondering how it must feel for Manson to get out there and get his ass kicked by Zombie every night. Or maybe he just doesn’t give a shit. It kind of looked like that at times during his show, which makes Rob Zombie the superior winner on this tour.

Marilyn Manson (5/10)

1. Hey, Cruel World
2. Disposable Teens
3. The Love Song
4. No Reflection
6. The Dope Show
7. Slo-Mo-Tion
8. Rock Is Dead
9. Personal Jesus
10. Sweet Dreams
11. Come White
12. King Kill 33
13. Antichrist Superstar
14. Beautiful People

Rob Zombie (8/10)

1.  Jesus Frankenstein
2. Superbeast
3. Meet The Creeper
4. Living Dead Girl
5. More Human Than Human
6. Theme For An Angry Red Planet
7. Mars Needs Women
8. Never Gonna Stop
9. Sick Bubble Gum
10. Scum Of The Earth
11. Lords Of Salem
12. Enter Sandman
13. Thunder Kiss ’65
14. School’s Out
15. Dragula

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