One of Sonic
's most curious releases, and one of the last under his own name (or pseudonym) for about six years, "Mechanical Man" is actually a two-sided single, each side with a version of the same song. Sonic
plays and sings on one side, while he handles all instruments on the other with noted underground artist Frank Kozik
, who designed the sleeve, tackling the vocals there. It would just be an odd little diversion if not for the choice of song covered -- "Mechanical Man" being one of the compositions by noted frustrated songwriter Charles Manson
's arrangements bring out the fractured chaos of the song pretty well, with odd farm noises and half-heard murmurs mixing with the acid-folk ramble of the core semi-melody. Manson
's lyrics don't make any more sense whether recited by Sonic
or by Kozik
(who wisely takes a speaking, not singing approach), but it makes for engagingly trippy listening regardless.