By: Mikael Kahrle
On June 8, one of this year's most important alternative records arrived - Ministry's "Dark Side of the Spoon". A record that is heavy, fat and mean - with a humorous touch, just as God intended Ministry to be.

Less serious, more fun
- It's almost like a "greatest hits" of Ministry, says Al Jourgensen.
Those who thought the last album, "Filth Pig" from 1996, was too calm, slow and serious might enjoy "Dark Side of the Spoon" better.
- When making "Dark Side of the Spoon" we remembered some of the old times when we just cut loose and got back to having fun. There's not one moment on "Filth Pig" that you can describe as fun, to do or listen to, but I still love it. I had to get that shit out of me or else it was going to become a cancerous boil grow a second head or something.

Delays once again
I talked to the other Ministry anchor, Paul Barker after the "Filth Pig" release. He said that they wouldn't work with the side projects before making a new Ministry record this time.
- For a change we will go from Ministry to Ministry, he said. Although we've said it before and it took several years to make "Filth Pig" - the next album will not take too much time.
But it did. Barker and Joergensen teamed up with Jello Biafra to spend time for a second Lard album. "Pure Chewing Satisfaction" arrived in 1997.
"Dark Side of the Spoon" was initially scheduled for a mid-1998 release. The work began in late 1996 after a short break. Al, Paul, Louis Svitek and Rey Washam entered the studio in 1997. They were done with the recordings at the end of that year. Al:
- We'd been working on it for about a year, then we threw everyhing but two songs. One of the reasons we scrubbed the whole thing and started again, was that it wasn't good, it wasn't bad, it just was. This has never been a band of averages and I'd like to keep it like that.

"Bad Blood", good single
Finally, "Dark Side of the Spoon", arrived on June 8.
The first single release showed up some weeks prior to the album release: the typical Ministry bulldozertrack "Bad Blood".
The track is also included on "Matrix". This is a compilation with "music from and inspired by" the successful thriller "Matrix" - a film that wakes the old cliché "cyber" back to life. The track list includes lots of other famous artists like Marilyn Manson, Rammstein, Rage Against the Machine and The Prodigy.
Before the album release Al simply disappeared. It sounded like a PR-stunt and he showed up again for gigs and at least some interviews. Ministry is booked for several festivals his summer, similar to the summer of 1996 in connection to the "Filth Pig" release.
Let's see how long we have to wait for the next Ministry album.

Ministry official homepage