For his latest historical exploration of the wicked annals of depravity, Marilyn Manson is plunging into the burlesque decadence of the 1940s in the video for his new single, "mOBSCENE."
Shot last weekend in Los Angeles, the clip was directed by Thomas Kloss and Manson, who previously lensed Nine Inch Nails' "Starsuckers, Inc." clip and the video for his own "Rock Is Dead," from Mechanical Animals (1998) and the soundtrack to "The Matrix."
The "mOBSCENE" video is set in post-war America and features a carnival atmosphere with elephants, sleazy swing dancers and two scantily dressed pinup girls who sing the cheerleader-style line "Be obscene/ Be, be obscene," an Interscope spokesperson said.
Manson appears as a top hat-wearing ringleader who dons different costumes throughout, and the band's performance is shot in a variety of colors, the spokesperson said. The video also features Manson's burlesque star girlfriend, Dita Von Teese.
The single, which goes to radio April 21, will be the band's first to feature new bassist Tim Skold (ex-KMFDM). Skold also played samples and keyboards on the band's upcoming album, The Golden Age of Grotesque, due May 13 (see "Marilyn Manson's Message: Be Bad, Look Good, Buy My DVD").
"mOBSCENE" is an industrial metal anthem featuring a blazing riff augmented by swelling horn samples, a throbbing bassline and vocals that switch between raspy whispers and full-throated shouting. During the middle section, guitars drop out and there's a brief megaphone passage that sounds like an announcement from a circus ringmaster.
"You want commitment, put on your best suit/ Get your arms around me, now we're going down, down, down," Manson sings, later proclaiming, "You came to the see the mOBSCENE/ I know it isn't your scene / It's better than a sex scene/ It's so f---ing obscene."
The first pressing of The Golden Age of Grotesque will feature a bonus DVD with a short art film called "Doppleherz," which Manson wrote and directed.
He'll promote the album with a series of extravaganzas he's calling "Grotesque Burlesque." The first will take place in Berlin on Friday and will feature Manson playing five or six new songs, a racy performance by Von Teese and an exhibit of Manson's artwork. Similar events will follow in the U.S. in May before Manson hits the road on Ozzfest (see "Manson Wants To Perform With Siamese Twins For Nude Crowds").