This was definitely a dream coming true given that I have the deepest admiration for this Guitar Hero, a genius that I put in the same category than a Sir Paul McCartney or a Damon Albarn (sure there are many others but well.)
This is a musician that through its incredible energy and charisma will make you feel in a way that you can only experience when you see your music gods on stage. Like a ball that literally eats your stomach away until HE appears, in front of you, on his pedestal, in the middle of the stage.
He’s accompanied by six marvelous young women looking spectacular in their blue dresses. He wears a suit on the same tones of blue and and obviously, his sex appeal (oh yes!).
The set-list is just impeccable and created specifically for the occasion: the perfect showcase of Mr White vast talent.
Here it is (And since I am a very nice girl I have included the different bands with which these songs were composed. You’re welcome :P)
1. Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground (The White Stripes song)
2. Sixteen Saltines
3. Love Interruption
4. Hotel Yorba (The White Stripes song)
5. You Know That I Know (Hank Williams cover)
6. I Guess I Should Go to Sleep
7. Two Against One (Danger Mouse cover)
8. Weep Themselves to Sleep
9. Hypocritical Kiss
10. Hip (Eponymous) Poor Boy
11. Top Yourself (The Raconteurs song)
12. Ball and Biscuit (The White Stripes song)
13. Freedom At 21
14. Take Me With You When You Go
15. Cannon (The White Stripes song)
16. My Doorbell (The White Stripes song)
17. Blue Blood Blues (The Dead Weather song)
18. The Same Boy You’ve Always Known (The White Stripes song)
19. Steady, As She Goes (The Raconteurs song)
20. I’m Slowly Turning Into You (The White Stripes song)
21. Seven Nation Army (The White Stripes song)
Even now, while I am writing this, I am re-living the set-list…and oh, what a bloody good set list this was! The bar was set high from the first few chords of “Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground”, and when the following track ensued, the audience was already transfixed in total mind and body captivation. The perfect dream state for the slow and sweet arrival of the ballad: “Love Interruption”. Just incredible.
The rest of the gig was just as amazing and, as you could easily guess, I am impatient to repeat the experience and to have Mr White, and its fellow musicians, come back to us with another project, another concert. One of those concerts that effortlessly slips in the top-ten-best-gigs-ever. A concert so worthy that it doesn’t even make you cringe when everybody starts singing the uber-famous “Seven nation Army” in that Stadium hymn way that has become –unfortunately- so annoying. But no, when in the presence of the great Jack, you sing it loud and proud, not like the irritating drunkster does in the club, but with its proper words ‘And I’m talking to myself at night because I can’t forget / Back and forth through my mind/ behind a cigarette’ …and you continue even the music it’s over. Because it’s so true.
Obviously, when you play in a band associated to the rock/metal/hard rock scene, it’s cool to say that your next album is gonna be “the heaviest you’ve ever recorded”. You can also say that it’s a true “way back to your roots”. However, as a listener, 99% of the time you’ll realize that all those claims weren’t true.
This time, it’s our friend Brian Warner aka Marilyn Manson who tried the “come back” trick. He kept on saying that his new record “Born Villain” would be like a new born (but not Christian, don’t worry !). Well, we gotta say that after at least two – ehm ehm – embarrassing records, this new release indeed reminds us that the God of fuck still has something to say and offer. But what about the live performance ?
We went to Le Zénith (Paris), a pretty cool venue, not too big so that you can actually enjoy more than just blurry shadows of musicians from far away. First thing I notice: the audience is totally multi-generational. Marilyn Manson has been playing music for more than 20 years and you can definitely see it when you spot the majority of people running to find a seat. Clearly, they are looking for a quiet seated show than a place as close as possible to the Reverend. But hey, no judgement. Let’s skip the horrible performance of the most annoying opening act of the year from… you know what ? I don’t even wanna name the band. If someone in the audience actually liked it, I’m willing to listen to you. It’s 10pm and the ceremony can now begin.
Marilyn Manson has had a long enough career that he could totally turn this show into a live greatest hits. And in fact, after a good version of the brand new “Hey Cruel World…”, he goes back to the amazing “Holy Wood” (“The Love Song” = love !). And then, reality strikes our ears : “No reflection” starts and confirms that what we thought was just a microphone or mix problem sadly it’s not. Marilyn Manson certainly didn’t give his best performance as a singer tonight. Sounds like he is now more able to scream (and damn, he’s good at it !) than to properly sing any melody. Unfortunately, he doesn’t even have the excuse of being too physical on stage anymore. If we can salute the talent of his musicians (especially the disturbing Twiggy Ramirez aka Jeordie White), this new version of the band is pretty… quiet ! Yes, we said it. No more crazy costumes or outrageous animations on stage, no more shocking moments, no more unpredictable behaviors, just music. If it was too much for some critics before, it is now probably not enough. I definitely wasn’t expecting a brutal song like “Irresponsible Hate Anthem” to turn into a rock tune. Yet, it happened.
In fact, the whole concert turned into a rock concert. Marilyn Manson is not playing metal/goth rock or whatever you want to call it anymore, he is not scary or provocative anymore. He is now a rock artist, and even if he does it well, there’s definitely some regret in seeing him this way… I mean, Ozzy Osbourne is “The prince of darkness”, right ? And Marilyn Manson “The God of fuck” ?
Dear Satan, time to look for a new spokesman…
In 2012, more than ever, you’re going to see a lot of our friends showing off proudly their new business cards stating « photographer ». You know, that friend who photographed an old empty chair in sepia, the one who has a Flickr account, or that one that told you you NEED a Tumblr account, etc… Indeed, the man we met for this interview also has “photographer” written on his business card. Yet, Stanley Greene’s work and career brought him to some of the most dangerous places in the world – as in fashion studios. Whenever he had to portray a model or a dead body, he did it with his own vision.
Schilt Publishing recently had the brilliant idea to summaraise Greene’s long career with a very impressive trailer. More powerful than any introduction about Stanley Greene; we would like to steal two minutes of your life , so you can hear the man speak for himself. So turn the volume up and take it straight to your face !
We had the pleasure to meet him in Paris last September, to talk about love, life, his job and the ongoing fight between digital photography and film. Click below to read the complete interview.