Back in 1981, musician Al Jourgensen formed what was then a synth-pop band called Ministry. Finding marginal success with that format, Jourgensen did an about-face in the mid-80s and by all intents and purposes revolutionized electronic music in the form of a much bolder product, now referred to as “industrial.” Much like the genre’s name indicates, its music is loud, aggressive and theatrical.
Back in 1988, the album that got the industrial ball rolling was Ministry’s “The Land of Rape and Honey.” Flash forward some twenty-five years later to 2013 and Jourgensen releases his “final” album “From Beer to Eternity,” for which he is touring on. This past Tuesday night, he brought his “From Beer to Eterna” Tour (“From Beer to Eternity” Tour) to Tipitina’s, where Jourgensen and Ministry treated the packed house to a tightly produced show that, yet spanned only a few albums. The set was heavily stacked with tracks from, “From Beer to Eternity” as well as 2006 record “Rio Grande Blood.” The end of the set was dedicated to some of the more familiar tracks from the Ministry catalogue. The crowd’s energy was intense all night and went into overdrive once the band’s popular track “N.W.O.” came on.
The evening as a whole — as the case with many industrial music concerts — served as a soapbox upon which Al stood high. The visuals projected above the stage married well with the distorted and aggressive lyrics. The show’s overriding message — “don’t trust the government, don’t trust anyone, and keep an eye out” — was just as bold as its aesthetic counterparts. View an expanded gallery here.