If there were any pillars that were still present in the powerful medium that is metal music, Slipknot and Marilyn Manson would be two acts that you point to. Many would think that this tour would be a no-brainer given both bands’ history to revel in the counterculture of what rock music was interpreted to be. Since his start as Marilyn Manson and the Spooky Kids back in 1990, Manson has dared to push the boundaries of the imaginations of musical and religious mores. Slipknot, a nine-men frenetic assemble from Des Moines, Iowa continue to ply whatever you interpret the mainstream to be to bend at their will.
As metal goes through the ebb and flow of finding what the definition means in the new landscape of sub-genres and streaming – it’s nice to see that there are constants that people can still be excited for. Given the turnout at the BB&T Pavilion at Camden, NJ, rock is far from dead – just a bit older and aware of the long road that it’s come.
Of Mice & Men opened up the nice with a short set that was large on songs from their latest album, Restoring Force. They saved their newest single, “Pain” and one of the most heaviest songs in their repertoire, “The Depths” to close out their set. Marilyn Manson, although older than in his boisterous shock-rock days of the 90’s still had a set that was packed with hits and theatrics. There was still the demented ‘show’ aspect within the ten song set.
During “Sweet Dreams”, Manson came out on stilts to sing. The backdrop was a huge dollar bill with Manson’s face in the center and during the classic “Antichrist Superstar”, the old ‘down-arrow’ podium came out much to fans delight. Manson concluded with what would be his most recognized song, “The Beautiful People,” jumping into the front row and singing it with whoever would grab the mic. You have to think that most in attendance were in their teens when the song first was released. During the MTV TRL days, it served as an anthem against the clean-cut stream of pop music that was plentiful. It was messy, it was raw, and it was unkempt – a quintessential Marilyn Manson set.
“You’ve been with us since the Electric Factory days,” lead singer Corey Taylor within a blistering hour and a half run through that included a new screen which flashed snippets from the band’s previous videos and imagery like a picture of deceased bassist Paul Grey at the ending of “Skeptic”. While the band’s stage presence is unlike anything you will see, it’s the sincerity and bond with fans that has amounted to the three-year support of the band’s latest album, 5: The Gray Chapter.
Taylor had told a personal story before “The Devil In I,” that a five-year old girl named Laney who is fighting cancer had chosen it as her fight song. Fans, many who had worn their own version of masks or the trademark jumpsuits never sat down. Some has pondered the future of the band as they are planning to take a short hiatus after the tour ends. Hopefully it is not as long as the six-year road that it took to get back to The Grey Chapter, but as the band lead the entire amphitheater into their trademark ‘jump’ at the end of “Spit It Out,’ you can see that the admiration will be their once they return.
Check out the full gallery from the show here.