Vol. 2, Issue #17 September 14th - September 27th, 2007

CD Reviews: Ministry, 1990s, and The Go! Team
By: Graham Lee Brewer

Ministry: The Last Sucker

After cranking out industrial metal for well over two decades, Ministry have finally decided to call it quits. Lead singer Al Jourgensen said publicly that this will be the New Wave-turned-hardcore band’s final endeavor. The saddest part is that Jourgensen and crew are at the top of their game. After 12 albums and 27 years, they still know how to fucking rock.

Much like their other Bush administration releases, “The Last Sucker” is almost completely characterized by its anti “W” sentiment and extreme political criticism. The song “No Glory” sums it up perfectly in the chorus by simply sampling the words: “greed, power, corruption.” With all of its news story and Bush speech sound bites, U.S. government hatred, unapologetically heavy distortion and industrial drumming, it’s a wonder Ministry never did a split album with Trans Am.

But this album is so much more than just an anti-Bush record. Yes, that is its basic foundation and ongoing theme, but when it comes down to it “The Last Sucker” is an impressive collection of songs. It’s the final stroke on a masterpiece of a career in a genre that isn’t easy to stay unpredictable in. They even through in a Doors cover with “Roadhouse Blues.” If you love metal, industrial rhythms, and you hate the shit out of George W., I can’t possibly recommend this album more.

1990s: Cookies

1990s frontman Jackie McKeown made a name for himself across the pond with his previous band Yummy Fur with insightful lyricism and catchy hooks. It seems, unfortunately, that he seems to only remember the latter with his new outfit. “Cookies” comes across as an album made purely for the purpose of making frat boys feel like they know a thing or two about indie rock.

Heavy with attempts at poppy familiarity and hook, after hook, after hook, “Cookies” is a huge lump of generic disappointment. Lyrical content almost completely consists of trashy women, drug and alcohol references, catholic school girls and any other stereotypical college party descriptor and is delivered in a tired, overused fashion on top of even more tired and overused guitar lines. This album is nothing more than pseudo-hipster party ambience.

The Go! Team: Proof of Youth

The world of modern music is full of gimmicky experimental pop bands. They’re a dime a dozen and all trying to set themselves apart from the pack with a playful facade. England’s The Go! Team were born to distinguish themselves. They make giddy, fun music that pops with euphoric exuberance and a childlike energy. At first, it’s easy to write The Go! Team off as peddlers of bubble gum pop, but once you really taste their candy you’ll realize it’s much sweeter than that.

Sample-heavy enough to make Girl Talk look twice and full of bounce, their second album, “Proof of Youth,” makes the perfect party soundtrack and its all-girl vocals (with the exception of a Chuck D sample) and upbeat tempos would have fit seamlessly into a late ‘70s kid’s program. In fact, the retro elements of the album make it accessible not only to teenage girls looking for something to dance to, but aging hipster pining for disco beats of yore as well.

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