It’s been three years since Ministry’s last album, 2018’s “AmeriKKKant.” But now, Ministry is back and ready to rock with their new album, “Moral Hygiene.”
“Moral Hygiene” marks their first album with new bassist Paul D’Amour, who joined the band in 2019. The new album includes guest appearances from former Ministry guitarist Billy Morrison, former N.W.A. member Arabian Prince, and former Dead Kennedys vocalist Jello Biafra. Biafra is also bandmates with Ministry front-man Al Jourgensen in their side project, Lard. “Moral Hygiene” also includes a track co-written by Iggy Pop and James Williamson of The Stooges.
The first track, “Alert Level,” opens slowly with what appears to be a news sound bite, then moves into intense signature Ministry music that blows you away. Throughout the song, there are short news clips from the last year that talk about the future looking bleak while the chorus is, “Let’s get ready… ready to die!” The song is a whopping six minutes in true industrial music form.
Many songs on “Moral Hygiene” carry a heavy, “end of the world” vibe that adds to the dark and heavy sound that is Ministry. You can find, “If you ask me, humanity’s in trouble. Now kiss your ass goodbye” on the track “Disinformation” that uses sound bites of former president Donald Trump saying, “fake news” throughout the song.
According to the band, the creation of “Moral Hygiene” came from our real world in real time. “As Jourgensen watched the chaos that befell the world during the height of a global pandemic and the tensions rising from one of the most important elections in American history, he seized on the opportunity to write, spending quarantine holed up in his self-built home studio – Scheisse Dog Studio – along with engineer Michael Rozon and girlfriend Liz Walton to create Ministry’s latest masterpiece, ‘Moral Hygiene’ out on Nuclear Blast Records. Anchored by last year’s leadoff track ‘Alert Level’ – which asks listeners to internalize the question ‘How concerned are you?’ – the 10 songs on this upcoming 15th studio album cover the breadth of the current dilemmas facing humanity, while ruminating on the sizable impact of COVID-19, the inevitable effects of climate change, consequences of misinformed conspiracies and the stakes in the fight for racial equality. And most importantly doing so with the lens of what we as a society are going to do about it all.”
While “Search and Destroy” features more vocals than usual Ministry songs, and it’s a nice break up of tempo and melody for the album, the track “Believe Me” features a throwback vocal style that is similar to the cult classic, “(Every Day Is) Halloween.”
Ministry is a powerhouse of industrial music and a heavyweight in their expertise. They are Al Jourgensen on lead vocals and guitar, Roy Mayorga on drums, John Bechdel on keyboards, Paul D’Amour on bass, Monte Pittman and Cesar Soto on guitars
But do not think they are all doom and gloom. “This may sound crazy but I’m more hopeful about 2021 than I have been in two decades at least,” Jourgensen explained. “Because I do see things changing; people are starting to see through all the bullshit and want to get back to actual decorum in society. We could just treat each other nicely and be treated nicely in return. I never thought Ministry would be in the position of preaching traditional values, but this is the rebellion now.”
Well put! To can catch Ministry tour dates with Melvins, and Corrosion of Conformity:
MORAL HYGIENE – Track list:
Alert Level (featuring Arabian Prince)
Sabotage is Sex (featuring Jello Biafra)
Search and Destroy (featuring Billy Morrison and written by Iggy Pop and James Williamson)