The Land Of Rape And Honey


Sire Records, 1988

REVIEW BY: Sean McCarthy


Blame it on the synth-heavy band, hemmorhage, but for some reason in the late '80s, many heavy-metal bands were doing their best not to include keyboards in their albums. Most were afraid adding keyboards was a symbol that the band was getting soft.

Anthrax with keyboards? The horror! Metallica? Sure as hell hope not! Megadeth? No way, they are waaaay to heavy to include keyboards. Little did a pimple-faced critic of synth realize that in 1988 a band released an album that re-defined what heavy was to music.

The band was Ministry, and Al Jourgensen and Paul Barker released my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 The Land Of Rape And Honey. It was perhaps one of the scariest albums released in the '80s. The relentless beats begin to bombard the listener as soon as they put this release in. From the brain hemmorhage beat of "Stigmata" to the closing of "Abortive," The Land Of Rape And Honey helped bring industrial music to the masses before Nine Inch Nails took it to the mainstream.

If you can't understand the lyrics to " The Land of Rape And Honey, don't bother. Just let the music bombard you. Guitars are distorted, releasing white squalls of sound throughout such tracks as "Destruction" and "You Know What You Are." But what's really stunning is the sense of fear a listener gets while listening to The Land Of Rape And Honey. In most of the tracks, you can almost see some unfortunate soul get sucked up in one of the moshing/mauling pits to one of their concerts. And see them get clobbered by the raging freaks who mistake this unlucky bastard for a frat boy.

The highlight of the album would probably have to be the title track. With a shuffling, computerized beat, Ministry lays an errie war-march beat alongside a their chaotic white noise. It's hard to describe any of Ministry's music without using the word "white", but you'll understand if you pick up this release or their classic, The Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste.

Be it playing "Goldeneye" in a deathmatch mode on N-64 or just doing a shitload of dishes, The Land Of Rape And Honey is all about release. The album also solidified the career of Jourgensen, who put out two other quality Ministry works before stumbling on Filth Pig. He has also been in numerous side projects and produced an equal number of high-profile releases.

Looking at Jourgensen's massive size, his grim reaper's cowboy hat and his microphone, decorated with carcasses, it's easy to be intimidated by the band. Meeting a rabid Ministry fan off the street is just as scary. But life isn't supposed to be safe. You think you've tasted heavy with Megadeth's Rust In Peace? Well, suck up, take a deep breath and proceed to the next step in heaviness.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


© 1999 Sean McCarthy and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Sire Records, and is used for informational purposes only.