The Land of Rape and Honey

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
The Land of Rape and Honey
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 11, 1988 (1988-10-11)
Ministry chronology
Twelve Inch Singles (1981–1984)
The Land of Rape and Honey
The Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Taste
Singles from The Land of Rape and Honey
  1. "Stigmata"
    Released: 1988
Professional ratings
Review scores
Encyclopedia of Popular Music[4]
MusicHound Rock[5]
Robert ChristgauB+[6]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide[7]
Spin Alternative Record Guide8 / 10[8]

The Land of Rape and Honey is the third studio album by American industrial metal band Ministry, released on October 11, 1988, by Sire Records. This is the first Ministry album to include bassist Paul Barker and marks a departure from the band's previous two synthpop and EBM records. It incorporates heavy metal guitars and industrial music influences, and Al Jourgensen uses distorted vocals in his natural accent, rather than the faux British accent of previous albums. The resulting sound was influential in the industrial metal genre and is Jourgensen's favorite Ministry album. The album was certified gold by the RIAA in January 1996.

The album title comes from the slogan of Tisdale, Saskatchewan, whose motto at that time was "The Land of Rape and Honey",[9] a reference to the agricultural products rapeseed and honey.[10] The band chose the name after seeing the slogan on a souvenir mug.[11]


Jourgensen credited his work with Adrian Sherwood on the preceding album, Twitch, for giving him confidence in his vision and showing him new techniques, which he said he pushed to an extreme.[12] Jourgensen had experimented with a heavier, industrial sound starting in the mid-1980s with singles such as "No Devotion" from the Revolting Cocks' Big Sexy Land and "All Day" from Twitch.[13] When RevCo's next single was more commercial, Sire proposed doing the same for the new Ministry album, but Jourgensen threatened to disband Ministry.[14] Continuing in this less-commercial, industrial-laced direction, Land of Rape and Honey incorporates elements of heavy metal such as fast electric guitar riffs, although only the album's first three songs use guitars extensively.[3] "Stigmata" does not feature live guitars; the two chord riff, altered with a pitch shifter, was sampled.[15] Jourgensen had written some of the songs prior to working on Twitch and said this was the sound he originally wanted for the band.[16]

In his memoirs, Jourgensen described himself at the time as a "functional addict" who scheduled his life around his dealer's availability. Despite this, he spent hours editing tapes of music the band had recorded; Jourgensen described them as "snippets of noise" that came to him in dreams. Inspired by William Burroughs and the cut-up technique, Jourgensen cut up the tapes and spliced them back together randomly until he liked the end result.[17] Jourgensen wrote "Stigmata" at the last minute after realizing he needed another song to complete the album.[15]

A post made on Wax Trax! Records' official Instagram account in 2019 shows a handwritten production sheet featuring a number of tracks which did not appear on the final record.[18] Certain songs were instead released through the bands' side projects: "Idiot" and "Blackened Heart" under Lead Into Gold and "Apathy" for 1000 Homo DJs.


The album cover is an electronically processed image of a burned corpse in the Leipzig-Thekla subcamp of Buchenwald.[19] Jourgensen took a photograph while watching a Holocaust documentary on television and distorted the image himself. According to Jourgensen, it was originally rejected by the record label, but they later changed their mind after Jourgensen cut off the head of a roadkilled deer, put it in his truck, drove from Austin to Los Angeles, went into the Sire Records building, threw the head on the desk of the head of the art department and said, "Here's your new fucking [album] cover."[15]


The album was certified gold by the RIAA in January 1996[20] and was re-issued by Wounded Bird Records in 2007.[citation needed]

Tom Moon wrote in 1,000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die that the album "became the blueprint for all of what was tagged as 'industrial' dance music".[21] Fear Factory, Linkin Park, Slipknot and Nine Inch Nails have cited this album as a major influence.[22] Jason Heller of The A.V. Club said the album "straddles a huge shift in industrial" and includes influences from most industrial music offshoots at the time. Heller suggested it to pop culture enthusiasts who want an accessible entry-point for industrial music.[23] Jourgensen has cited The Land of Rape and Honey as his favorite Ministry album,[24] likening it to a learning experience that changes one's life.[25] However, Jourgensen said that "Stigmata" is his least favorite song in the Ministry catalogue for its simplistic songwriting despite its popularity.[15] The track is featured in Richard Stanley's 1990 science fiction thriller Hardware, although the band shown performing the track is Gwar.[26] Marilyn Manson performed a cover on the soundtrack of the film Atomic Blonde.[27]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Al Jourgensen except where noted [28].

1."Stigmata" 5:45
2."The Missing" 2:55
3."Deity" 3:20
4."Golden Dawn"Jourgensen, Barker5:42
5."Destruction"Jourgensen, Barker3:30
6."Hizbollah" (CD bonus track) 3:58
7."The Land of Rape and Honey"Jourgensen, Barker5:10
8."You Know What You Are?"Jourgensen, Barker4:43
9."I Prefer" (CD bonus track) 2:15
10."Flashback" 4:50
11."Abortive" 4:23


  1. "Golden Dawn"
  2. "Hizbollah"
  3. "The Land of Rape and Honey"
    • "Sieg..." "...Heil!" [chanting] - The Tin Drum. These chants are used ironically in the song, which is anti-fascist, and the band gave context to the Nazi chants by ranting about political issues during concerts.[31] This was still misinterpreted by white power skinheads as the band's support for Nazism. Jourgensen said the band jumped into the crowd and fought the skinheads, but rumors persisted that the band was fascist.[32]
  4. "You Know What You Are?"
  5. "Flashback"
    • "Now hold up, man!" "Do it," "Everybody's got to die sometime," "I'm hurtin' real bad inside" - Platoon
  6. "Abortive"
    • "T minus 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4; we've got the main engine start—we have main...", "America's first space shuttle!" "And the shuttle has cleared the tower." - NASA



Additional personnel[edit]

  • William Rieflin – drums, programming, keyboards, guitar, background vocals
  • Chris Connelly – background vocals (2 & 3), lead vocals (9)
  • Eddie Echo – production (11)
  • Steve Spapperi – engineer
  • Julian Herzfeld – engineer
  • Keith "Fluffy" Auerbach – engineer
  • "Dog" (a pseudonym of Al Jourgensen) – album cover
  • "Ill" – album cover
  • Brian Shanley – album cover

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1988) Peak
US Billboard 200[33] 164


  1. ^ Hartmann, Graham (January 10, 2019). "10 Most Underrated Bands of 1980s". Loudwire. Retrieved March 1, 2020.
  2. ^ Carr, Daphne (June 17, 2019). "33 Best Industrial Albums of All Time". Pitchfork. Retrieved March 1, 2020.
  3. ^ a b Huey, Steve. "The Land of Rape and Honey - Ministry". AllMusic. Retrieved August 21, 2018.
  4. ^ Larkin, Colin, ed. (1998). "Ministry". Encyclopedia of Popular Music. Vol. 5 (3rd ed.). Muse UK Ltd. pp. 3692–3693. ISBN 1561592374 – via the Internet Archive.
  5. ^ Christensen, Thor (1999). "Ministry". In Graff, Gary; Durchholz, Daniel (eds.). MusicHound Rock: The Essential Album Guide (loan required). Detroit: Visible Ink Press. p. 762. ISBN 978-1-57859-061-2 – via the Internet Archive.
  6. ^ Christgau, Robert. "CG: Ministry"., Retrieved on March 20, 2010.
  7. ^ McLeod, Kembrew (November 2004). "Ministry". In Brackett, Nathan (ed.). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. New York: Simon & Schuster. p. 544. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8. Retrieved November 1, 2017 – via Internet Archive.
  8. ^ Weisbard, Eric; Marks, Craig, eds. (1995). Spin Alternative Record Guide. New York: Vintage Books. pp. 250–251. ISBN 0-679-75574-8.
  9. ^ "Canola, golden beads"
  10. ^ Wolanski, Coreen (March 1, 2003). "Ministry - Nothing Exceeds Like Excess". Exclaim!. Retrieved December 4, 2017.
  11. ^ "Tisdale, Saskatchewan". Find Target. Retrieved June 8, 2010.
  12. ^ Brown, Jake (2012). "Chapter 18: Al Jourgensen—The Ministry of Industrial Rock". Behind the Boards. Hal Leonard LLC. ISBN 9781480329768.
  13. ^ Reed, S. Alexander (2013). Assimilate: A Critical History of Industrial Music. Oxford University Press. p. 237. ISBN 978-0-19-983258-3.
  14. ^ Thompson, Dave (2000). Alternative Rock. Miller Freeman, Inc. p. 497. ISBN 0-87930-607-6.
  15. ^ a b c d Jourgensen & Wiederhorn 2013, p. 86.
  16. ^ Jourgensen & Wiederhorn 2013, p. 84.
  17. ^ Jourgensen & Wiederhorn 2013, p. 83–85.
  18. ^ "Wax Trax! Records on Instagram". Instagram. Archived from the original on 2021-12-24. Retrieved May 16, 2021.
  19. ^ Terich, Jeff. "10 Ambiguous Album Covers". Treblezine. Retrieved 7 June 2016.
  20. ^ "Gold & Platinum Search "Ministry"". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  21. ^ Moon, Tom (2008). 1,000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die. Workman Publishing Company. p. 505. ISBN 978-0-7611-3963-8.
  22. ^ Chillingworth, Alec. "Every Ministry album, ranked from worst to best". TeamRock. Retrieved 19 August 2016.
  23. ^ Heller, Jason (August 3, 2014). "Where to start with the harsh, mechanized beat of industrial". The A.V. Club. Retrieved March 24, 2022.
  24. ^ Acharya, Kiran. "Revolting Lots: Al Jourgensen's Favourite Ministry Albums". The Quietus. Retrieved June 7, 2016.
  25. ^ Stingley, Mick (October 11, 2018). "Ministry's Al Jourgensen on Turning 60, 30th Anniversary of 'The Land of Rape and Honey'". Billboard. Retrieved May 16, 2021.
  26. ^ Donnelly, K. J. (2007). British Film Music and Film Musicals. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 88–89. ISBN 978-1-349-54571-1.
  27. ^ "Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - Atomic Blonde". AllMusic.
  28. ^ BMI. "BMI Repertoire". BMI. Retrieved 10 April 2018.
  29. ^ a b Murphy, Tom (June 12, 2012). "Ministry's Al Jourgensen on his ties to Colorado: living in Breckenridge, attending Greeley High School and his ill-fated attempt at a rodeo career". Westword. Retrieved May 17, 2021.
  30. ^ "10 Evil Rock + Metal Songs Inspired by Aleister Crowley". Loudwire. Retrieved May 17, 2021.
  31. ^ Reed, S. Alexander (2013). Assimilate: A Critical History of Industrial Music. Oxford University Press. p. 188. ISBN 978-0-19-983258-3.
  32. ^ Strauss, Neil (April 11, 1996). "The Pop Life". The New York Times. Retrieved March 24, 2022.
  33. ^ "Ministry Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved October 31, 2021.