Al Jourgensen broke up Ministry in 2008 and said that a reunion would never happen…well apparently four years later he changed his mind, decided to record an album called Relapse and then tour behind it. The only North American dates for the tour were to take place in Denver, Los Angeles, New York City and Chicago so my buddy Joe from Portland decided to meet me in L.A. with his girlfriend at the time Shaina. After all, this was kind of the rock equivalent of Jesus rising from the dead.
Once the dust settled I learned that Joe’s flight would be coming into L.A. early in the morning. The plan was for me to meet up late afternoon in downtown L.A. at the roach coach of a motel that was secured fairly close to the venue. There was nothing inherently wrong with this plan except Joe with nothing in particular to do all day on vacation equals drinking. I warned him to just stay away from hard liquor if he intended on drinking all day. He decided to not heed the warning and was pretty sauced by the time I showed up. This ultimately resulted in Joe being denied entry into the concert…after he flew all the way down from Portland to see Ministry! This put Shaina (who I literally had known for about 2 hours) and I into an awkward predicament. I felt bad for Joe but still wanted to see the show. Joe insisted that we go in without him but then kept texting Shaina once we were inside which made her feel like she should go meet up with him. I was not going to let her walk through downtown L.A. in the middle of the night by herself so if she had decided to leave I would have left too. Thankfully she decided to stay.
Opening band Blackburner looked like the bunny character from Donnie Darko and put on a pretty good show but everyone was there to see Al. I had not seen Ministry since the C U LaTour four years before this and I am glad I got to see this because they kicked ass as per usual. It was a very balanced setlist from the “newer” Ministry albums and the brand new songs fit right in. Shaina did not really know their music so that was interesting hanging out with a complete stranger that was not really a fan. Nothing a little alcohol could not cure.
SETLIST: Ghouldiggers, No W, Rio Grande Blood, Senor Peligro, LiesLiesLies, 99 Percenters, Watch Yourself, Life Is Good, Waiting, Worthless, Relapse, The Last Sucker, Khyber Pass, Psalm 69, N.W.O., Just One Fix, Thieves