They said it couldn’t happen again. That’s the tag line for the “Twins of Evil” tour with Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson. Though it is a pretty catchy phrase, I’m not sure why anyone would say it. Aside from a small feud between the two back then (and a rough show in Vegas) it seemed to go quite well. We did wonder if Manson would put on a better show than he did the last time around. Complete with missed cues, monitor troubles, and him trashing the set pieces on and off stage, this was hopefully going to be a redemption show for us.
The show took place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Being that I’ve been to this place defaultcountless times for work and play, I knew what to expect. They know how to run a show.
We got there just in time to grab a few drinks as Manson started up. Dropping the usual songs like Antichrist Superstar, Dope Show, this is The New Shit, everything you would expect plus some other songs from the Heaven Upside Down Album. Side note, does he look like JP from Grandma’s Boy on that cover, or is it just me?
Now, this was 100% a better performance from the last time. But I did notice one thing. His vocals always seem to be lacking. Far be it from me to criticize a vocalist, that shit is tough. But it’s not what you’re going to hear on the album. That being the case is perfectly fine. Touring is rough. But you do have to wonder what the guy would sound like if he turned down the party meter.
Manson finished up his set and we made our way a bit closer to the stage. Now, let me start by saying that I am a huge Rob Zombie fan. Saying that, is an understatement. I haven’t missed a show of his in Vegas for as long as I can remember. There is one thing that comes to mind when I think about every one of them. Consistency. Every single time, it’s a banger. I’m sure there are hiccups here and there, maybe every show here just goes flawlessly. But I’ve yet to have a bad time.
The opener, Meet The Creeper, hits so damn hard live. It’s a simple, loud, banger. There’s pretty much zero lull in song choice from here on out. 17 songs played so damn well you’d think it was tracked and played by robots. About mid-way is a fucking ridiculous solo by John 5 while Zombie walks the crowd with a giant flashlight. I saw a few people looking around to see where he was, but seeing this exact thing happen on the previous tour, I opted to watch the solo. This guy makes me ashamed to say I play an instrument, and inspires me to get better all at the same time.
Right after that finishes the crowd gets a bit of a finger wag from Zombie. Again, I’ve seen this bit before. And while you would think someone doing an old bit again would get old, I believe in the message so much, that I don’t even care if it’s a repeat. What is the message you say? PUT THE FUCKING PHONE AWAY. Now I’m just as guilty as anyone else. I did manage to grab a few pictures here and there, none of which came out any good. But I’ll be damned the man is right. Enjoy the moment and watch the show with your own eyes, not through the phone screen.
After all the shenanigans they kick into Thunderkiss 65. Classic White Zombie. Amping the crowd up and calling the two mosh pits weak (which the crowd quickly corrected by merging them into one big pit, they drop into Blitzkrieg Bop, and School’s out. I normally hate covers, but as usual, they do it right. Closing the main set is the new Beatles cover with Manon, Helter Skelter, the two do a bang up job.
So, what else is there to say? These two pair up great. Manson definitely made up for our last time seeing him. And once again Rob Zombie did not disappoint. They say it couldn’t happen again. Hell, if it happens a third time, I’ll be there.
Author: Thomas Palmer – Bassist for Vegas local band Vatican Falling