the NachtKabarett

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Against All Gods Burning Censer



Manson emerging onstage as the prelude of the AGAINST ALL GODS tour. Photo by Cyril Helnwein.

In many religious ceremonies, and occult rituals included, an object known as a censer is used ritualistically during the ceremony. A censer is simply a metallic, often circular shaped, object with a chain which to swing it whose purpose is an incense container that burns with charcoal. A common circumstance in which it's seen used is in Catholic masses where the priest walks out unto the congregation swinging the censer by its chain and chanting a prayer while the censer is emitting smoke which fills the room.

'Angel swinging a censer'
Anton Raphael Mengs
Circa 1770
The angel took the censer, and he filled it with the fire of the altar, and threw it on the earth.
There followed thunders, sounds, lightnings, and an earthquake....
Revelation 8:5

Manson has often donned the outfits and mannerisms of priests in a grotesque, mocking and his own personalized way. During the opening prelude to the AGAINST ALL GODS tour Manson walked out on the black shrouded stage swinging a lit circular object, his censer, with smoke emitting from the entire stage, the smoke of the burning incense for this ceremony, while Manson harrowingly screamed his opening monologue, the prelude to Portrait Of An American Family, his personalized and demonic version of Willy Wonka's speech warning all involved of the dangers of things to come, this speech as his prayer and cry AGAINST ALL GODS. And because this tour is AGAINST ALL GODS it's only befitting that it be opened in Manson's own piously blasphemous way, which starts this ceremony that segues into the performance of The Love Song, the backdrop of which is a stained glass alter with the image of Christ and we are in Manson's church.