Released as a stand alone single, two of the biggest names in shock rock/metal have covered The Beatles, Helter Skelter. Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson are soon to head out on a joint North American tour called Twins of Evil 2018. In preparation for that, we get a bit of marketing in this cover, published via Nuclear Blast.
Originally released in 1968, Helter Skelter featured on The Beatles self titled double album often referred to as The White Album. Love them or hate them, The Beatles are probably the main influencer to many forms of music and Helter Skelter itself is one of the most influential of all. Whether being part of serial killer, Charles Manson’s, beliefs or even believed to be a key influence is the early development of heavy metal, Helter Skelter is well known, and well covered. Bands ranging from Pat Benatar to Aerosmith to U2 to Oasis have all had a crack at it and now it’s metals turn.
Neither Rob Zombie nor Marilyn Manson need any introduction. Everyone knows who they are, whether in or out of the metal community. Both band’s court controversy, though none more so than Manson. Manson recently released his 10th studio album, Heaven Upside Down, whereas Zombie last released an album in 2016. That was the “catchy” titled The Electric Warlock Acid Witch Satanic Orgy Celebration Dispenser. Erm, okay. Rob Zombie is as famous these days for his film directing and producing having been at the helm at some cracking horror movies, as well as some terrible ones. Just some of these titles include House of 1000 Corpses, The Devil’s Rejects, remakes/prequels Halloween and Halloween II, The Lords of Salem and 31.
Helter Skelter is 3 and a half minutes long and is, well, a cover. We already know what we are going to get to a degree but how well do they pull it off? I should probably start by saying that I don’t particularly care for the original so being a close copy is not something I am bothered about. Manson and Zombie both come in at different points in the track though it seems like Manson’s is the predominant vocalist. The production is exactly what you expect from both bands with that metallic, synth heavy and glossy feel despite the anarchic nature of the song.
It is pretty good, to be fair. They definitely make it their own song and it could easily sit on either band’s own catalogue. The drums have a lot of meat to them and there are little guitar melodies and solos peppered all over the track which work really well. It is a really decent cover that stays true enough to the original to be recognisable. Somehow though, with all modern production and gloss they lose the raw, energetic thrashy feel of the original. It is a fun, listenable gimmick to rock out too while waiting for them to record more original music.
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You can check it out for yourself at any of the usual streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify. You can also check it out on Nuclear Blast’s YouTube channel, here. If you live in America and fancy checking out The Evil Twins tour, you can grab tickets from here. Find out more about Rob Zombie at his Facebook or Twitter page. You can also find out more about Marilyn Manson at his Facebook and Twitter page too.
Helter Skelter by Rob Zombie & Marilyn Manson
The Final Score - 7.5/10