The men who rule the world have made a fucking mess sings Shirley Manson, demurring misogyny and sexism, systemic racism, religious ideals, the detrimental effects of a capitalistic world, environmental concerns—all the things mulling in her head over the past two decades. “The Men Who Rule the World” sets the scene for Garbage’s seventh studio album No Gods No Masters (Stunvolume/Infectious Music).
Produced by longtime collaborator Billy Bush, No Gods No Masters was a different inception for Garbage. For the first time in the band’s 25-year career, there were no formulated ideas when the band—Manson, along with Duke Erikson, Steve Marker and Butch Vig—holed up in a Palm Springs house with the intent to jam, then wrote more than a dozen songs within a two-week period.
No Gods No Masters covers the seven virtues, seven sorrows and seven deadly sins, and Manson insists she’s the thread through it all.
“Whenever you’re the person presenter of ideas, which is what a lead singer essentially is, you by default become the glue that holds everything together,” says Manson. “In terms of lyrics, I had a burning need to articulate some of the things that I’d been talking about in my private life, and I felt it would be disingenuous not to put that onto the record.”