April 24, 2014 12:00pm PT by Michael O'Connell
WGN America's 'Salem' Enlists Marilyn Manson for Opening Titles (Video)
The Rembrandts it's not.
WGN America's Salem has released its opening titles ahead of the second episode, and the sequence sets a suitably dark tone for the series -- thanks in large part to vocals provided by Marilyn Manson.
The singer, who's no stranger to the macabre, makes his TV scoring debut with series composer Tyler Bates on the song "Cupid Carries a Gun." The 50-second titles for the Fox 21-produced period drama make their debut during the April 27 episode.
TV REVIEW: Salem
"The song 'Cupid Carries a Gun' was the last track we just finished for my new album," says Manson. "The occult and witchcraft [are] so often used in cinema with a heinous disregard for even researching its origins. However, I liked the themes of Salem. It looks at the witch trials without being cliche like most modern films."
Bates' previous TV credits include Californication, but he's been much more active in film -- scoring similar genre efforts such as Rob Zombie's The Devil's Rejects and Zack Snyder's Dawn of the Dead reboot.
"Manson and I wrote a draft of 'Cupid Carries a Gun' shortly before I began working on the score for Salem," says Bates. "A couple weeks later I saw the title sequence and the song immediately came to mind. I showed it to Manson for fun more than anything, and it inspired us to finish the song that night. The next day I played it for Brannon Braga and he said that 'Cupid Carries a Gun' was the perfect tone and attitude for the show's main titles."
Salem debuted to a strong ratings on Sunday night. WGN America's first original series, it raked in 2.3 million viewers over the course of the night.