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Ministry Play Early Synth-Pop Songs for First Time in 40 Years at Cruel World Fest: Photos + Video

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Ministry went back to their synth-pop roots at the Cruel World festival at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, on Saturday (May 11th), playing some songs they haven’t performed in 40 years.

On a bill featuring legendary new wave bands like Duran Duran and Blondie, frontman Al Jourgensen and company set aside their blistering brand of industrial metal for the day. Instead, they primarily culled their set from their first two albums: 1983’s With Sympathy and 1986’s Twitch.

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According to, three of the songs — “Work for Love,” “I’m Falling,” and “Effigy (I’m Not An)” — hadn’t been performed since 1984. Three others — “All Day,” “Over the Shoulder,” and “Just Like You,” — hadn’t been played since 1987.

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For this performance, Ministry turned into a 13-piece band with backing vocals and strings provided by the “Ministrettes’ and “Ministrings,” respectively. Among the other added musicians was former Nine Inch Nails keyboardist Charlie Clouser.

The Cruel World set closed out with the classic sing-along goth anthem “(Everyday Is) Halloween),” a song Ministry started playing again in 2018 and 2019 after it had been dormant for more than 30 years.

This summer, Ministry will return to their industrial metal sound as they support their recent album, HOPIUMFORTHEMASSES, on a summer US tour supporting Rob Zombie and Alice Cooper. Tickets for that outing are available here.

See Consequence‘s full recap and photo gallery of the 2024 Cruel World festival here, and check out pics and video of Ministry’s set below.

Photo Gallery – Ministry at the 2024 Cruel World Festival (click to expand and scroll through):

Work for Love (first time live since 1984)
All Day (first time live since 1987)
Over the Shoulder (first time live since 1987)
Just Like You (first time live since 1987)
We Believe (first time live since 2003)
I’m Falling (first time live since 1984)
Effigy (I’m Not An) (first time live since 1984)
(Everyday Is) Halloween

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