It’s amazing how just one single letter within shortest time (after nearly four years) awakes such negative associations and you actually need no explanation, which subject MINISTRY cover on their newest album. Since the first day of George “Dabbeljuh” Bushs President job, the letter “W” has developed to a really nasty one and as politically dedicated band, MINISTRY decided to make an entire album about the actual President of the United States Of America. And there is no doubt, that Alain “Al” Jourgensen and his fellows are no friends of this man, witnessed by an unmistakable statement like „We ain’t no Dixie Chicks, man. We’re not gonna say. ‘Well, I kinda don’t like Bush’ and then apologize for saying it. We hate this f***er”.
After their debut “With Sympathy” in 1983 (they founded in 1980), with which they got some attention, followed some sociocritical and very heavy records, which made this band such indispensable for the music history. The most famous album is still “Psalm 69” (1992), which is still the scale for this band and the band could never keep up to this level again. But let’s turn to present and their new raging album “Houses Of The Molé”, which acoustically squares up with Americas society and its leader. In a certain way, this new record is also a recommencement for Al Jourgensen because creative head and bass player Paul Barker left MINISTRY after 18 years, so the tension was high for the new songs. How would the music direction develop after the departure of Barker? Or how remarkable would this losing be?
With “Houses Of The Molé”, we get some answers and these answers are clear. MINISTRY rocks, noises and thrashes like ever and even though this album is much simple and less experimental, it’s an absolutely distinctive MINISTRY work. “Houses Of The Molé” is rough, harsh, loud and extremely full of hate and although that there are no new elements on this band, this album really kicks your ass. The opener “No W” welcomes us with a faster version of Carl Orff’s “Carmina Burana”. This song is full of Industrial like beats, fat guitar walls, strange synthie effects and croaking vocals that makes clear, that there must be somebody really pissed off, who unleashes now all his aggressions.
Another highlights are „Waiting“, „Worthless“ or „Warp City“ and they contain everything that makes MINISTRY out and that made them famous. Also no speed song like “WTV” isn’t missing, which surely reminds not only me of “TV II”. The following “World” is then a more relaxed but forceful stomping anthem, which is also a check out tip. Fans of the band won’t pass this album because also production and cover are first-class. So, everybody who wants to read his Michael Moore books again and looks for the most fitting soundtrack, gets the best with “Houses Of The Molé”. But also non-political headbangers should listen to this as MINISTRY are definitively in the first row in terms of brutality. How wonderful stagnation can be! (Online August 15, 2004)