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Stage Buzz: Ministry

| December 21, 2015
Al Jourgensen

Alain Jourgensen of Ministry

Al Jourgensen and Ministry will be performing a special New Year’s Eve show at Concord Music Hall Dec. 31st, marking the band’s first Chicago show in a year, and its first New Year’s Eve show in Chicago since 1988.

“This was a no-brainer when Concord Hall called and asked if I’d be interested in this,” Al told IE. “We’re not currently on tour or anything, it’s just a one-off. I get to go home and freeze my ass off (ed: maybe not) and just make it a party!”

What’s unique about this show is that Jourgensen will be digging into Ministry’s back catalog and unearthing long-lost gems from his classic albums, The Land of Rape and Honey, The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Taste and Psalm 69.

“To be honest, I’ve only really got three records that I like in my catalog,” Al said. “Rio Grande Blood, From Beer to Eternity and The Land of Rape and Honey, in no particular order. The majority of the set will be from those three albums. We’ll throw in some oldies as well. I think those three albums will stand the test of time.“

Jourgensen will also debut a track he’s never played live before, the Chicago Blackhawks theme song, “Keys to the City,” which is a real treat given Al’s undying love for the Stanley Cup Champs.

This one-off Ministry show is also significant in other ways: Uncle Al hasn’t played many concerts with his band since the death of longtime guitarist Mike Scaccia in 2012. Jourgensen disbanded the band shortly after.

“It will be very Chicago-centric. It’s like a tip of my cap to a place that spawned the whole thing. I lived there for 35 years and the first 25 years of Ministry was in Chicago.”

The second bonus will be in the form of a documentary called Al’s Kind of Town that will be filmed during the week leading up to the show. It will dig back into Ministry’s early origins and Al will be revisiting his old Chicago haunts on camera.

As far as the future of Ministry, Jourgensen has stated that there will be no more Ministry albums, making 2013’s From Beer to Eternity the band’s swan song following Scaccia’s death.

“Mikey died during the recording,” Al said. “He just got finished with his last parts, went back to Dallas to play a show with Rigor Mortis and I got the call two days later that he was dead. I had to mix the record with his death still fresh in my mind, so the final playback on that one was extra special, and that album to me is very special.”

With that in mind, Al has been working on a new project with his acclaimed audio engineer, Sam D’Ambruoso, called Surgical Meth Machine. Jourgensen plays all the guitars and bass on their new record and a Nuclear Blast Records release is slated for Spring, 2016.

“As far as a live show, back in your hometown on New Year’s Eve?” Al concluded. “I mean c’mon, that’s just a party. That’s a no-brainer. That’s fun, man.”

Local industrialists, Fashion Bomb, opens.

Doors: 7:00 p.m., showtime 8:00 p.m.

Concord Music Hall, 2047 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Phone:(773) 570-4000

For special ticket info click HERE

-Kelley Simms

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Category: Stage Buzz, Weekly

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