"Whatever flaws I found in Portrait paled in comparison to the disaster this EP turned out to be," said Marilyn Manson in his autobiography, The Long Hard Road Out of Hell.
I couldn't've put it better myself: Smells Like Children is the band's worst album... EVER. Drug-addled and jam-packed with buckets of vitriol, Marilyn Manson tossed together this disappointment in between the releases of Portrait of an American Family (1994) and the album that made Marilyn Manson famous, Antichrist Superstar (1996); however, this EP did little to buttress the notoriety of the industrial rock deities behind the name, save for but one song, "Sweet Dreams," a slower, darker cover of the Eurythmics' popular 80s song.
Some of the most watered-down remixes and dry fillers drag this album into the Abyss, the only noteworthy ones being the three cover songs. The third of the three cover songs is Patti Smith's "Rock 'n' Roll Nigger," a track that, naturally, resulted in Marilyn Manson being accused of racism. Yet, Twiggy Ramirez's bassline of "Diary Of A Dope Fiend" that kicks in after "The Hands Of Small Children" and Pogo's mesmerizing organ solo in "Kiddie Grinder" argue that there's more to Smells Like Children than the perverted pastime of a lethargic ensemble. -- Matthew Gist