Friday, March 7, 2014
Prolific industrial overlord Alain Jourgensen just couldn't leave Chicago's Wax Trax studios alone after he and his cash cow Ministry signed with Sire Records. During the late 80's, the creative juices (and hallucinogenics) were a-flowin' and Hypo Luxa & Co. were spitting out side projects with serious aplomb. Released as a half-dozen 12" singles (and eventually as maxi-CDs), the material was generally more textbook "industrial" then the stuff Ministry was creating at the time, a decade ago someone finally got around to compiling all the stuff on one amazing record. We start off with Pailhead - a politically-themed side project comprised of circa-1987 Ministry with Minor Threat frontman Ian MacKaye on vocals. The band managed to release 3 singles worth of material - in my opinion the songs are hit or miss. Some ("Man Will Surrender", "Don't Stand In Line") are excellent but others seem to drag on forever. I don't hear the amalgam of industrial vs. hardcore that some claim the material champions. I mean, yeah there's guitar sampled in there but it sounds pretty much like what would end up on Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste as far as I am concerned. Next up is my favorite, 1000 Homo DJs. Created as an outlet for unreleased material from Land Of Rape And Honey, the band (once again) is basically Ministry with a couple friends dropping in to lend some drunken backing vocals. Their first single, "Apathy/Better Ways" is so-so; their 1990 cover of Black Sabbath's "Supernaut" is amazing (and has evolved into a staple of Ministry's live shows). That single's B-side, "Hey Asshole," is an epic 8-minute snapshot of being pulled over by a typical jock cop which I could just listen to forever; whomever did the cop's vocals was fucking on point. Hilarious. PTP's "Show Me Your Spine" is the only unreleased material on this compilation, a song from the RoboCop soundtrack. Programmed by Jourgensen with vocals by Skinny Puppy's Ogre (who evidently just happened to walk into the studio that day), the one-shot was nixed in the final film score. Evidently an abbreviation for "Programming the Psychodrill" (from a J.G. Ballard essay), PTP's other incarnation was as a collaboration between Jourgensen, Paul Barker and Chris Connelly of the Revolting Cocks, they managed to release the band's only other single, the traditionally industrial "Rubber Glove Seduction/My Favorite Things". Acid Horse wraps up the compilation with a similar electronic house music anthem. Two versions of "No Name No Slogan" are presented, one mixed by Jourgensen and Barker, the other mixed by Cabaret Voltaire's Stephen Mallinder and Richard Kirk. All in all, a great record - solid material throughout. Enjoy.