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Ministry - Rio Grande Blood (CD)

Rio Grande Blood
by Elina Papadoyianni at 23 April 2006, 7:23 PM

The whole essence of Rio Grande Blood revolves around the three lines posted in the band's website by Herman Goering (Nazi Commander, April 18, 1946) rising caustic points and alluding ironic hints. Nevertheless, this record is purely about political issues concerning the effect of the U.S. Government's actions. The album's cover art cleverly expresses everything you are about to listen to in a nutshell.
As correctly mentioned by Al Jourgensen, Rio Grande Blood is a very focused record. It has left behind all the personal fears Jourgensen sang about and raises very hot social / political matters.
Rio Grande Blood could be as well renamed to The Anti-Bush Protest Part B after Houses Of The Mole in 2004. From the days of The Land Of Rape And Honey (1988) and The Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste (1989), not forgetting Filth Pig in 1996, Ministry have become stronger, angrier and more aggressive than ever before. The sound has a lot of electronic elements, as well as fast thrashy riffs and has resulted in an industrialized, thrash-evolved Metal amalgam. With the screaming distorted voice of Al Jourgensen, the raging guitars and the utterly sarcastic lyrics, the band has made a strong comeback, determined to stick its sound into our ears.
The title of the Jourgensen-produced album Rio Grande Blood is a parody of ZZ Top's Rio Grande Mud (1972). It features the ex-Prog guitarist Tommy Victor, bassist Paul Raven (former Killing Joke) and drummer Mark Baker. There are also guest appearances by Sgt. Major in Senor Peligro and by former Dead Kennedy's singer Jello Biafra in Ass Clown.
In the highlights of this album are tracks like Fear (Is Big Business), Lies Lies Lies and Gangreen ironically resembling a military anthem. The Great Satan track has made its first appearance in the Rantology collection (2005), only that here it comes in a much better, heavier version. There are, additionally, very good moments in songs like Palestina with some clean vocals from Alain and in Ass Clown were there is a monologue by Jello Biafra.
Although this is a very good album, I would like to see Ministry stepping away from the Bush-politics situation and starting to criticize or being inspired by something else for a change. There is no need for any more songs on the specific topic; we all got their point on that…

3 Star Rating

Rio Grande Blood
Senor Peligro
Fear (Is Big Business)
Lies Lies Lies
The Great Satan
Yellow Cake
Ass Clown
Khyber Pass
Alain Jourgensen - Vocals, Guitar
Tommy Victor - Guitar
Paul Raven - Bass
Mark Baker - Drums

Guest Musicians:
Jello Biafra
Sgt. Major
Record Label: 13th Planet Records


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