October 30, 2015
Verizon Theatre at Grand Prairie
Grand Prairie, TX USA
Review by Lewis Leveridge
Photos by Michael Insuaste
Freakers Ball - Marilyn Manson, The Cult
Going Straight To HELL... Who's Going With Me?
The Eagle's 97.1 annual Freaker's Ball once again rolled around with this years headliners Marilyn Manson lead by the incomparable Mr. Manson and co-headliners, The Cult, fronted by the sarcastic Ian Astbury. The place for this years event was the Verizon Theatre that was packed to the top with many dressed in their best Halloween attire. I know this is a radio show, and probably the only one The Cult and Manson are performing at, so I am sure there isn't much love between them! Clash of personalities to say the least.
Didn't get to see any of the opening bands like Aranda, Pop Evil or Theory Of A Madman... but I would have liked to have seen Generator, local Dallas metal group but come on... 5:10 on a Friday night in Grand Prairie with traffic and rain... good fucking luck making it on time. I did hear good things about their set so do yourself a favor and go see these cats live!
To be quite honest I was there for one thing, to see The Cult! I've been a fan since their 1985 LP Love and was fortunate to see them on that tour, live at the Arcadia Theater in Dallas, Texas. To my surprise and pleasure, they opened the show with "Phoenix" that had me and a few true Cult fans groovin', while the majority of the crowd stood still in boredom.
It didn't take long for Ian to come down on the audience with comments like "I see many young faces tonight... here to see some rock and roll... too bad you missed by 30 years or so!" He was obviously not playing to his regular crowd and for the most part he did a fairly decent job of hiding it. Guitarist Billy Duffy was his usual self standing firm on the right side of the stage, cranking up his guitar and remaining silent as Ian mumbled around throwing sarcastic remarks between songs, slamming his tambourine on the stage floor. OOOO he is so tough!
Not sure who he was but the rhythm guitar/keyboards on the far left with a cool hippie hat, feather and all... that dude was great! His work on the Theremin was brilliant and really enhanced all of the newer Cult numbers that were played. Doubtfully we will see him on the next Cult tour, as most musicians do not last long in this band.
I like the Cult, I dig the Cult, but tonight was not their night. Sure they played familiar songs from Sonic Temple, "Firewoman" and several from my favorite LP, Electric like "Wildflower" and closing with "Love Removal Machine" but even before the song was done, Ian literally ran off the stage. No goodbyes, no thanks, no nothing! The biggest cheer The Cult received was when Ian mentioned Marilyn Manson is coming up next!
And now for the headliners... Marilyn Manson. What can I say about this band that most who know a little about their history doesn't already know. Sit tight this isn't going to be pretty!
I describe MM as a visual imagery of convoluted CRAP spewed by an over-rated self-righteous "It's all about ME" artist who likes to prance around stage like Hitler in make-up with an awful hair doo! Should have added the Hitler Stash for good measure!
Seeing them since their start back in 1994 at the Bomb Factory, opening for Nine Inch Nails, MM hit the scene as the modern day shock rock with more show than go and have lived up to that ever since. I was even at the infamous 'Chicken Stomp' show, Trees 1995, and as predicted, MM has lived and empowered themselves in controversy from the begin and today, they still live up to that hype and glory. Why not, it makes them cash and keeps them indoctrinating young minds to their warp perception of the world of shitty music.
This night Mr. Manson took his indoctrination a bite further as he played up to an 11 old year boy who was against the barricade dead center, surround by his parents I'm sure. Manson played up to the kid all night by speaking directly to him, handing him items from the stage and even stepping into the barricade several times to sing right next to him! It's like he fell in love with this kid! Creepy, yeah, very much so!
At one point he asked how old the boy was and when was his next birthday. It would be next July 1st and Manson said he would make sure to get the kid a gun... not to go shoot up his school or anything... or kill himself... but just so he could have one. Later he mention how we all should embrace the young man as he will grow up to have a Big Cock one day. Did Manson cross the line? Possibly. But you have to understand who he is and what his main objective of any show he performs at... SHOCK! One thing he is NOT... he is NO role model for an 11 year old boy or any sensible adult for that matter. That is my personal opinion.
The only positive thing I can say about the MM show, it was visually stimulating with Manson waking around on stilts, dangling like a puppet on the anti-Christ Superstar podium, the burning of the bible prop was an added touch that will surely gain his place in HELL (HAHA) and all the mic slamming and tipping over the fake stage amps was all show... as MM loves to throw his hissy fits throughout the show. Such a queen!
A few funny moments for me were when Mr. Manson almost poked his eye out with the Mic-Knife prop that was placed backwards by the stage hand. Manson walked up, ran into the prop knife and cursed... I'm sure the roady was fired from the tour after that incident. And then there was this cute blonde dancing around stage right, probably Twiggy Ramirez' girlfriend. She was hidden for most of the show but there towards the end, she became more visible and practically on stage. Not for long, as Mr. Manson walked over and pushed her off back behind the curtain. Come on girl, you should know by now... you can't take and spotlight from King Idol!
This will be my last time to see Marilyn Manson and after this review, probably the last time JAM Magazine will get media credentials to cover their show in the future!