"I will bang this drum until my dying day," vows Corgan on 'Drum + Fife' to a sea of devotees at London's Koko. Bands have come, and bands have gone, but he still remains. And while his legacy remains intact, Corgan and his troop of Pumpkins are still marching ever forwards.
Taking to these relatively humble and intimate surroundings, the sense of occasion is only heightened for the band to launch staggering new album, Monuments To An Elegy. Now, a Pumpkins gig has always been a spectacle in itself - but there's a sense of momentum from fans behind Monuments that Corgan himself told us he hasn't felt since Mellon Collie And The Infinite Sadness.
The energy of the fans is met by that of the songs, with new numbers 'Being Beige', 'One And All', 'Monumennts' and 'Tiberius' carrying that classic Pumpkins bite - but without ever leaning on nostalgia. Instead, they sound as charged and battle-ready as anything by a contemporary artist - and many of the countless they've inspired.
Also, we need to talk about the current line-up: wow. New touring members Rage Against The Machine drummer Brad and Killers' bassist Mark Stoermer add a remarkable vim to proceedings. Wilks' iconic powerhouse of rhythm stands with Stoermer's subtle and steady basswork to provide the perfect centre of gravity for Corgan's proggy noodlings and the underrated fret skills of guitarist Jeff Schroeder.
It is this fully realised, widescreen showcase of Pumpkins' past, present and future that makes tonight one worth remembering. Alongside the Monuments tracks charging into the horizon, Corgan's legacy moments are brought up to the date with a renewed spirit and imagination. The reaction was nothing short of feral and religious as they tore into 'Disarm', straight into 'Zero', straight into 'Bullet With Butterfly Wings' then into a menacing funk-metal cover of David Bowie's 'Fame' before ending the first set with psych-rock expanded 'Silverfuck'.
What a night. But it was far from over. After an already mind-melting show, Marilyn Manson stalked on to the stage for an encore.
Earlier that day, Manson told Gigwise that he hadn't seen his old friend Corgan for 15 years until earlier this week - and that he'd been in rehearsals with them. All of that came to a head with the pair united on stage, and it was so fitting to see icons from the 90s, shoulder to shoulder, showcasing their relevance and meaning in the now.
Manson showed his latest, more mature and elegiac sound with new single 'Third Day Of A Seven Day Binge', before kissing Corgans' bald head and launching into an awesome rocked-up version of Pumpkins' classic 'Ava Adore'. They then embraced, thanked and kowtowed one another and left an audience howling.
So here's to tonight: a celebration of the kings of yesterday, today and tomorrow - until their dying days.
Smashing Pumpkins played:
One and All (We Are)
Drum + Fife
Glass and the Ghost Children
Stand Inside Your Love
Bullet with Butterfly Wings
Fame (David Bowie cover)
Third Day of a Seven Day Binge (Marilyn Manson cover) (with Marilyn Manson)
Ava Adore (With Marilyn Manson)