Wilkes-Barre gig was good but restrained. It was held
in the Kirby Center, a handsome old restored Art Deco movie
palace,whose staff/owners are so protective of it that they
laid tarpaulin on the wood stage to protect it from scuffs
and tape marks. Try to imagine the sublime weirdness of your
typical MM/Danzig crowd being shown to its red velvet seats
(!) by elderly usher ladies with flashlights...after being
searched and metal-detected of course. But I digress.
--Spent most of the pre-show hanging around the back alley (with rooster, who I had the considerable pleasure of meeting and chatting with at this show =) watching the Mansons meet their fans. It's just plain amazing how much friendlier and more approachable they've become since last tour. Even Mr. Manson, who used to barely leave the bus, showed up in the alley several times to sign autographs and talk (even after being mobbed once and booking in haste). Perhaps they're realizing how many people are coming to these gigs just to see them?
Twiggy wandered off the bus half-asleep and was promptly surrounded by fans showing him artwork (including a painting of himself from the Donahue Show) which he seemed delighted with and took several photos of. Madonna arrived wearing a black plastic Elvis wig over his bald dome (causing someone to yell "Sleazy P. Martini!"). Ginger seemed to be loving the heck out of all the attention, and spent at least an hour elaborately tuning and fussing with his drums while clusters of kids watched in fascination. EVB and I took separate advantage of the Reverend's decision to appear: I to finally get his autograph and speak to him (angelynx: "I just want to thank you for doing this music. There's nothing else like it." Mr. M, looking me in the eye: "Well, thank you." --OK, so it wasn't profound conversation: I actually said it without stammering and he actually looked at me.), and Liz to present him with the pretty thingy she'd brought: a metal pendant of an intricately sculpted Baphomet head imposed on an inverted pentacle. The Reverend studied this closely a moment, then tucking it into his pocket actually smiled and said thank you: "I appreciate that." Liz told him we were planning numerous more shows and he asked (another smile!), "Going to be in Pittsburgh?" Seemed pleased that we were. I didn't realize at the time why...
[Footnote: Baphomet is the goat-headed hermaphrodite deity of the Templars and the icon of the Black Mass; he appears on the Manson road crew's t-shirts --the "God of Fuck #1" shirt.]
(trivia: Mr. M was wearing red shades and a "Salem's Lot" shirt.)
--I'm spending this much time on the pre-show because the show itself was a bit tied-down. It's just not as much fun for the crowd or the band (I'd say) when the fans can't leave their seats. Mr. Manson dealt with this by vaulting the barrier and singing in the orchestra pit for a moment, but was promptly delivered back to the stage by security. No gashing himself, and very brief nudity (a large number of the kids just were not coping with this - seems to be a very conservative area).
--But, basically, they just played the set and split. Good, strong performance, but --in my opinion--didn't have the usual spark.
Trivia: Mr. Manson paid tribute to the fancy setting by coming onstage in a pair of elegant black elbow-length opera gloves trimmed with pink marabou; he also had one eyebrow drawn on in red and one in black. Daisy has his head shaved pretty fantastically now - bald crown and sides with just a ring of long hair left, which is tied into five long green strands, a sort of hair pentagram. And yes, ned's t-shirt is still on Twiggy's amp! Couple of new (well, new to me) bits: at one point the Rev tells everyone to spit on him; also, between "My Monkey" and "Misery Machine" he added a couple of paraphrased lines from the Stones' "Monkey Man" - "Am I too messianic, or a trifle too Satanic?" - which I thought v. cool...
(And as soon as they were gone, the staff rolled up the tarp and mopped down the stage. Wearing rubber gloves. I didn't know it was so contagious...)
Again ran into Ginger in the lobby talking to fans during Danzig's show. Late in the set he caused some disturbance by re-entering the theatre and walking down the center aisle. Hee hee.