The band broke through in 1996, and some where shocked not only by what one journalist called "Brians helium pinched groan", (I strongly disagree with those words, for the record) but also his shoulder long black hair, layers of makeup and tendency to favor mini-dresses as stage-wear.
His bisexuality was also fuzzed a bit about in many interviews.
He is said to have been amused by the fact that people thought he was a girl- and a good looking one at that.
He has said himself that people usually think he is "incredibly gorgeous or ripping ugly", and that is the way with his music as well. You'll probably either love it, or hate it.
His guitar playing is quite unique, and sometimes it just doesn't sound like guitar playing at all. Again, you'll probably either love it, or hate it.
His songwriting is said to be "that of a very disturbed, depressed person" or the work of a genius.
If you like one aspect- the voice, the music, the lyrics or the attitude, the chance is, you are going to love it all.
(This is the impression I have got from the articles I have read. And I have read quite a few of them.)