The 2013 Manson tour came to Vancouver and it was…disappointing. Five days before the shock (not so much anymore) rocker hit the west coast at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, he passed out on stage in Saskatoon with reports stating that he may be suffering from the flu. That should have been a warning that his performance might not be spectacular.
The show started out with a group called Butcher Babies and they were pretty damn good. I haven’t heard of them before and I was very impressed with the hard-hitting guitars, drums and wicked vocals growled and howled by the two hot female singers. An adrenaline fueled intro to get the audience ready for the Antichrist Superstar.
Then the man himself appeared, the audience yelled and cheered and the band opened with Hey Cruel World off the new album Born Villain. And it was not good. Manson mumbled through the track as he did for a majority of the songs taken from several of his albums but none from Eat Me Drink Me or The High End of The Low. I thought it was a nice touch for him to wear his red pope outfit during The Love Song and tear up and eat a bible during Antichrist Superstar on the same day that the pope resigned. Mobscene started out well until Manson left the stage near the end of the tune and Twiggy finished singing it. Slo-Mo-Tion was descent, maybe it was the slow part that helped. I Don’t Like The Drugs was OK and Sweet Dreams was going so well until he left the stage without finishing…again. Then came the big one, The Beautiful People and it was pretty good, probably the best song of the night for him. And the encore? Nope. I saw two roadies helping him off the stage behind the background.
Butcher Babies – Mr. Slowdeath – Check out the video, song starts after about 1:30
Final Thoughts: The highlight of the show was the opening act Butcher Babies and Manson’s band who carried his set, especially Twiggy. This was the 3rd time I’ve seen Manson and it was not good. I would like to say, hey he’s getting up there in years but he’s only 44 and musicians like Bruce Dickinson can still give a hell of a performance. I think the low part of the event was when he stopped singing during one song and just rolled around on the ground with his legs in the air. I hope that the poor performance was due to a flu but I’m beginning to think that perhaps he is just not as good live as he probably was 15 years ago. Maybe it’s just me that was disappointed, I don’t know but I would have preferred to not see him perform if he was ill, then to see him perform so poorly. I believe that if a musician is that sick, sick enough to not be able to finish the songs, then they should just cancel the show.