Preview - Ministry @ the Warfield (4/16/22)

Al Jourgensen of Ministry - Photo: Kevin Keating
Al Jourgensen of Ministry (Photo: Kevin Keating)

Originally announced in January of 2020, Ministry's 'Industrial Strength Tour' is finally hitting San Francisco's Warfield Theater on Saturday April 16th. Tickets at the time of this post are still available here. Although the tour's name was originally meant to represent the other industrial powerhouse artists also on the bill -- at the time both KMFDM and Front Line Assembly were the openers -- the name now signifies the sheer resilience that Ministry creator and frontman Al Jourgensen has had to deal with over the past two years of the pandemic. From rescheduling the tour not once, but three times(!!!) to dealing with the exit of a band member and the rotating line-up of openers. At long last, Ministry will be back in San Francisco and joined by the Melvins and Corrosion of Conformity in support.

As the tour was originally conceived, Ministry planned to celebrate the 30th anniversary of their seminal The Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste album. This album is easily one of my favorite's from the band and is so good, I also consider it to be one of the 10 albums I'd take with me to be stuck on a remote island for the rest of my life -- it's that good! But since the tour's been forced to move, Al & co. are now able to support the release of their latest album, Moral Hygiene (their 15th!), and the 40th anniversary of the band itself! I'd assume we'll hear a good mix of tracks from both Hygiene and the Mind, but I'll be curious to see how far back Al will go considering he rarely, if ever, plays tracks before 1988's The Land of Rape & Honey, let alone going all the way back to his 1983 With Sympathy debut album.

For those of you not already familiar with Ministry, the band was created by Al Jourgensen, now considered the godfather of Industrial music, back in the early '80s. With his synth-pop roots, Al leveraged early sampling techniques that were incorporated into a more aggressive sound with layers of heavy guitar, pounding beats and distorted vocals which has become the mainstay of Ministry's music over the past 30 years. Al's music has not only defined an entire genre, but has been an influence to countless musicians performing today -- among the most popular, Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails.

Ultimately, you won't want to miss this tour, and if you're located here in the Bay Area, get your tickets now for their date at the Warfield on April 16th! Al's got the band back together and will be joined by Roy Mayorga (drums), Paul D’Amour (bass), Cesar Soto (guitar), Monte Pittman (guitar) and John Bechdel (keyboards). This will be one for the ages considering we'll be celebrating the Mind album along with their latest, Moral Hygiene! Hope to see you there!

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