Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Into The Depraved New World: Mechanical Animals

"Inhale, exhale, let's all hail, it's a depraved new world afterall..."

Coma White, "the mannequin of depression"

One of the main characters Lenina in Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World" dwells in London in the future a "biologically improved" being, Beta Plus to function in this new society. However she questions every now and then the practice of sex for recreational purposes, opposite to Bernard's philosophy, who is an outcast.

This gives us an idea to help illustrate the second part of the Triptych named "Mechanical Animals", which title origin has many different levels of interpretation but it openly suggests a story set in the future as well.

Looking back at "Holywood" to keep some continuity we left Adam in a prison cell waiting for a sentence. Instead he decides to end everything commiting suicide. Adam never really dies, but falls slowly into a coma in the same prison and as he slowly regains consciousness he is put into a psychiatric ward. It was obvious that the decaying Holywood society was no good.

On the next chapter "Mechanical Animals" opens with the track "Great Big White World" which parallels the title of the book mentioned above. Adam wakes up into another dimension of his self; this is Hollywood. Once again this society is full of many vices but the main difference is that it's incredibly irresistible and glamorous. A world in which feelings seize to exist and have been replaced with drugs. Without them its "drained of all colors".

The reason why the futuristic version of Hollywood is so empty can be the result or a side effect of Adam's desire to stop getting hurt by others, as this was the premise of Pink in "The Wall".


However Adam becomes horrified of this new dimension and wishes to revolt once again. He is still captive and while inside the padded walls he reflects upon his new plans.

Curiously, in Hollywood he discovers through TV a familiar face but with a different name. She is Coma White. In his state of unconsciousness he dreamt he was tied to this being as the first track describes;

"And I dreamt I was a spaceman, burned like moth in a flame and the world was so f****** gone..."

At some point both beings separated and fell to Earth like fallen angels. Only to discover that Adam is apparently insane and Coma White was captured and turned into a model/actress/singer.

She has been raised to the level of idol and they see her as the ultimate face of perfection.

While technically Coma White counts as the counterpart of Adam, at some point is also another side of himself that wanted to reach stardom and power but was forgotten. You can also interpret it as a shadow of his innocence in a female almost androgynous form. That explains why her anatomy is not entirely made up of a man or a woman.

On religious folklore however, androgynous and bisexual creatures are heavily referenced as angels and demons.

Getting back to "Brave New World" Lenina is induced again and again to be promiscuous. This aspect is loosely explored on album tracks "New Model No. 15" and "User Friendly" highlighting some of the incredibly sexual features of Coma White.

The second track "The Dope Show" openly describes the use of drugs as a means of pleasure, entertainment and success:

"There's lots of pretty, pretty ones that wanna get you high, but all the pretty, pretty ones will leave you low and blow your mind..."

In "Brave New World" all drugs have been substitued for "soma"; designed mostly to eliminate all the bad feelings. This idea could have been inspired by the context in London or also a response to the uninspiring ambient.

The third track "Mechanical Animals" Adam describes the nature of his relationship with Coma White after watching TV;obligated activity by the goverment.

At the same time he reveals part of his nature, trying to find an identity;

"...this isn't me , I'm not mechanical, I'm just a boy playing the Suicide King"

By the way, the Suicide King is also known as the King of Hearts and its equivalent on the Tarot would be King of Cups. In a few words, the King of Cups represents love, emotions, passion all that which Hollywood lacks. If we put this together with the idea that this society truly has been "drained of all colors" Adam has found a new purpose; to induce feelings into his universe once again by going back to his counterpart.

Thus, Adam reveals a new identity; Omega. Also known as "the end" described in the Revelations book of the Bible. In order to feel he must embrace Coma White and seal her into himself.

The next track "Rock Is Dead" echoes "Disposable Teens" because it exposes all the depravity Adam's audience has fallen into. This reminds me of the chapters of "Brave New World" where the character of John the Savage protests about the futuristic London with quotes from Shakespeare;

"O wonder!
How many goodly creatures are there here! How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world! That has such people in't!"

and Adam's response in "Rock Is Dead" is;

"all simple monkeys, alien babies, amphetamines for boys, crucifixes for ladies..."

You can also hear a second voice which may stand for Coma White:

"Anything to belong, anything to belong...God is in the TV..."

It seems that title "Rock is Dead" suggests that rock music combines raw emotions like rage and sometimes and none of this is visible or permitted in Hollywood. On another level it can be an osbcure reference for "God Is Dead!" in Nietzsche's words.

Moving on to the next track "Disassociative".

The opening lyrics;

"I can tell you what they say in space, that our Earth is too grey..."

"Space" was referring to the higher forces and that they might feel disappointed about the world they see. The world can also have a double meaning;

"I don't wanna float in fear, dead astronaut in space..."

Space is a like a hole to the mind which is another word for madness. Makes sense with the word disassociative or splitting into two selves: the Omega and the Alpha or Coma White.

However in the real world he is mad and fears not being able to recover. The song itself continues to have references to "space" as he slowly sinks into madness.

Adam is still trapped and hopeless. Is there a way out?

The next song "The Speed of Pain" is self explanantory. when he feels there is pain because he remembers he is still tied to Coma White. This becomes a love/hate relationship.

"I wish I could sleep but I can't lay on my back, cuz there's a knife for every day that I've known you."

Luckily, Adam is found by some outcasts named the Mechanical Animals and plan an escape from prison. Although technically there is no track to support this the next song is "Posthuman" which also describes Coma White. Apparently her figure has become a form of dictator and she sells the "fascism of beauty".

With this new band, Omega and the Mechanical Animals they plot to destroy this "mannequin of depression with the face of a dead star". The next track is "I Wanna Disappear".

The songs sounds like a parody of what happened to him and Coma White. His rage is evident and won't stop until he's heard.

Finally this comes to Coma White's attention and Omega is invited to visit her.

The place seems to be very inviting and seductive. This parallels to "Brave New World" chapters 10 to 18, when John the Savage enters the World State.

Omega, however is seduced by some very powerful drugs with the promise that they will make him famous and powerful just like he always wanted.

The lyrics explain his dilemma:

"I don't like the drugs but the drugs like me".

After succumbing to these fabulous new drugs Omega sees that now Coma White will be available to everyone and be copied or cloned into the "New Model No. 15"

Omega runs mad thinking that if this happens this will definitely degrade her spirit and will never be able to save her. The only way to help each other is by creating mutual feelings so they can bind and be in peace.

Example of this song "Fundamentally Loathsome":

"When I hate I know I can feel, but when you love you know it's not real..."

Coma White addresses his counterpart and strongly warns him that if they go back to being just one person the world of Hollywood will perish as in the Apocalypse, as the energy of their souls is so intense like a collision or a big bang. As in "The Last Day on Earth":

"I know that it's the last day on Earth; we'll be together while the planet dies..."

Finally, the world itself doesn't end, Omega just jumps into another dimension. This time he has another personality and talks about the loss of Coma White, like in a form of a peaceful requiem:

"All the drugs in this world won't save her from herself."

Love is no more, only hate.

He goes back to the same place where he started; the psychiatric ward. The background is more obscure and this time the padded walls become his only and best friends. His final revelations and nightmares are about to become real...

While believing that Coma White would permit Omega feel again and perhaps pursue love, it actually became a long forgotten promise and disappeared. Remember "Coma Black" from Holywood? the song says:

"...the simple word of love itself already died and went away..."

To conclude the similarities with "Brave New World" John the Savage loses his mother and feels enormous guilt and decides to punish himself. Sadly, this becomes a public and televised event for entertainment purposes.

The way this ending and "Antichrist Superstar" are linked is that once again the public has corrupted and created a new being, yet a reflection of their biggest fears.

Still, all Adam has now is hate, as in "Irresponsible Hate Anthem". His final transition is into a world with no name posing as the Antichrist Superstar.

1 comentarios:

Eriq said...

Your site is RICH with reflections and information! I'm feeling ready to dive in! When did you start this page? Thanks for it :)

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