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  • (Hed) Pe pride themselves in their station as a rap-metal hybrid who aren t just about a predictable guitar assault with a few tossed in rhymes. The California band truly exists as both hip-hop innovators and metal provocateurs (mixing in a few other styles to boot). It s a mixture best appreciated in the live setting, and the 2008 record (as paired with a DVD) brings you as close to the experienc


This live collection highlighting Ministry’s finest efforts kicks off like the soundtrack to an epic horror film and only gets better. Ministry main madman Al Jourgensen’s death-metal-influenced vocals, industrial sonics, and visual aesthetic helped pave the way for Nine Inch Nails and Marilyn Manson; for a few years, subsequent to 1992’s Psalm 69, their star shone brightly. But band inactivity and a plethora of side projects, including Lard and 1000 Homo DJs (featuring NIN’s Trent Reznor) knocked Ministry off track. Still, this solid, well-recorded set showcases their forceful, mesmerizing power. Especially potent are ”Just One Fix,” the controlled bedlam of ”NWO,” and the punk-metal guitar fury of ”Hero,” all of which indicate Ministry is still worthy of worship. –Katherine Turman

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  • Marking Ministry’s first recording on new label Sanctuary Records; “Sphinctour” shows the modern day Ministry still being able to pound out their brutal and unadulturated brand of industrial carnage live. Al Jourgenson’s voice sounds great, in fact possibly better than he did on Ministry’s last live album “In Case You Didn’t Feel Like Showing Up”. Every single song, from “Psalm 69″, “Filth Pig”, “Just One Fix”, “N.W.O.”, “Hero”, “Thieves”, and “Lava” are some of the best live recordings from any band I have ever heard, and proves wrong all the naysayers that have said this band doesn’t have it anymore (even though I wasn’t too fond of the albums “Filth Pig” or “Dark Side of the Spoon”, I still had my faith in Al, Paul and crew). My only gripe is that “Sphinctour” is too short set wise. I would have loved to have seen “Burning Inside”, “Land of Rape & Honey”, “Cannibal Song”, “Breathe”, “Stigmata”, “Tonight We Murder”, and yes, even “Jesus Built My Hot Rod” included on this set, but oh well. All in all, “Sphinctour” is a fantastic live album that is a definite must have for any and every Ministry fan.

    Posted on January 5, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I purchased this album with mixed expectations. Having seen Ministry live, I knew they can put on a mindblowing show when they want to. I also knew that their recent efforts (Filth Pig and DSOTS) were hit-and-miss affairs. Any reservations I had were quickly dispelled by what stands as one of the best live albums I’ve heard in recent years. After starting off with a brutal rendition of Psalm 69, the album moves into three songs from Filth Pig. All three sound better than they did on the album. From there we enter the album’s third “movement,” which consists of three favorites from Psalm 69, all served in abbreviated form and blended into one another (an interesting trick given that all of the songs here came from different live shows). We finally get one older song, Theives, before the album moves into its last chapter, a magesterial arc of songs starting with an absolutely brooding version of Scarecrow, a pounding Lava and, the high point of the disc, a haunting extended version of The Fall. This album gets stronger as it moves along, but it has high production quality and most if not all of the songs are stronger and more emotive than their album counterparts. If there is a weakness, it is the lack of some fan favorites, such as Jesus Built My Hotrod, So What, or Stigmata (though to be fair, two of these were on ICYDFLSU). It’s not quite the same as being there at a live Ministry show, but it’s close. For maximum enjoyment, play back-to-back with Nine Inch Nails’ “And All That Could Have Been.”

    Posted on January 4, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Easily the best live cd I have ever heard! It’s eardrum-pounding brutality at it’s best–and a fantastic “getting-ready-for-work-on-Monday-morning-and-being-really-pissed-about-it” compilation.

    Posted on January 4, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • For reasons unknown, years after the actual Sphinctour came to an end in ‘96, Ministry released this amazing live album, consisting mainly of songs off “Psalm 69″ and “Filth Pig”, and it couldn’t get any better. The only way this album could possibly get any better is if it were either 2-cds, or if the boys would have at least included “So What” or “Stigmata” (featured on the DVD). That or if they would have waited and maybe some song from “Dark Side Of The Spoon” would have been on here. All that aside, this is all the amazing intensity that is Ministry live. Even people who don’t like “Filth Pig” won’t be able to enjoy the live versions of such great tunes like “Crumbs” and the title track, but for some reason the guys felt the need to make “Lava” 8 minutes long and it gets a little annoying in the middle. Oh well… From the opening track the classic “Psalm 69″ all the way down to the slow, somber, rather depressing rendition of “The Fall”, this is one live release that is guaranteed to take your breath away, I promise. Nothing tops the version of “Thieves” on here. I can’t imagine the f*cking pit, man. If you’re new to Ministry and love live albums this is definitely one cd I would highly recommend to you, and for all the hardcore Ministry fans, we’ll all love this to death as well.

    Posted on January 4, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Simply one of the best live CD’s I’ve ever heard.’Sphinctour’ was recorded on the band’s 1996 world tour in support of their ‘Filth Pig’ effort.Superb sound mix,it just doesn’t get any better than this.Each of the CD’s eleven gut-crutching tracks were recorded from a different city,like Toronto,Hamburg,etc.However,’Sphinctour’ SOUNDS as if it were one continuous show.I LOVE that in a live album.Shows class,I think.Tunes I found that were more than worth repeated plays include the in-your-face “Psalm 69″,”Reload”,”Just One Fix”(know several fans that say this is their favorite Ministry cut),the slammin’ classic “N.W.O.”,”Hero”,”Thieves” and “Lava”.Top rate industrial metal as you like it.Line-up:Al Jourgensen-vocals,Paul Barker-bass,Louis Svitek&Zlatko Hukic-guitars,Duane Buford-keyboards and Reynolds Washan-drums.Highly recommended.

    Posted on January 4, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now