Mr Manson's dark muse has been rejuvenated after suffering from a chronic lack of inspiration in recent years.
His horrorshow industrial grind has been pruned back to the less cluttered approach of the acts who influenced him, and is supplemented by dabblings in funk, glam (Slo-mo-tion) and blues (Lay Down Your Goddamn Arms), and a good dose of synths in Children of Cain and Breaking the Same Old Ground.
His lyrics tick all the usual boxes, but are more personal and less deliberately provocative (he even quotes from Macbeth in Overneath the Path of Misery).
This has a downside – sometimes, he doesn't sound half as scary as he used to – but overall, Born Villain is a promising return to form.
Best tracks: The Gardener, Lay Down Your Goddamn Arms.
- Reviews by Nick Ward; CDs from Everyman, Nelson.