Mar 6, 2022

Ministry / Corrosion of Conformity / The Melvins - Soundstage

Category: Live Reviews



Baltimore, MD

Rams Head Live


MINISTRY Set List:  Breathe, The Missing, Deity, Stigmata, Supernaut (Black Sabbath Cover), Don’t Stand In Line, Man Should Surrender, Burning Inside, NWO, Just One Fix, Thieves, So What, Alert Level, Good Trouble, Search & Destroy (Iggy Pop Cover), No Devotion (Listed but not performed)


CORROSION OF CONFORMITY Set List:  Bottom Feeder, Paranoid Opiod, Shake Like You, Diablo Blvd., Vote With A Bullet, Born Again, Albatross, Clean My Wounds


THE MELVINS Set List:  Sanford & Son Theme (Intro), The Kicking Machine, It’s Shoved, Anaconda, Queen Charlie, Billy Fish, Cinilized Worm, Never Say You’re Sorry, Evil New War God, Hooch, Honey Bucket, The Bit


This show/tour was rescheduled three times over the last year(s) due to Covid, when it finally took place it featured an altered billing with Grunge legends The Melvins and Corrosion of ConformityMinistry’s “Industrial Strength Tour” was originally slated for Summer 2020, then pushed back to Spring 2021, then pushed back to Fall of 2021.  2022 was the lucky year when this tour could actually take place.


This show was sold out but interestingly enough not everyone who bought a ticket showed up.  This sold out show was not totally nuts to butts due to people just not showing up and incase you are unaware, the current trend ever since shows started back up post Covid is that fans will buy tickets but back out at the last minute and not show up for whatever reason, thus making even a sold out show not totally packed.

 Corrosion of Conformity opened the show with a set that started at 7 PM sharp.  COC always deliver an amazing performance and on this night Pepper and the boys tore it up.  Woody’s solo’s are emotionally moving, Dean’s bass work is groovy with a sonic chug, and Pepper’s vocals are the icing on the cake.

 COC delivered a solid 30 minute set and the general consensus throughout the crowd was that COC should have played longer!  Pepper thanked the crowd for showing up early and promised that they would be back at some point on a headlining tour.

 Pepper and the boys performed 8 songs that covered most of their releases.  The oldest song in the set was “Vote With A Bullet” and Pepper introduced it by saying that it was one that’s constantly relevant every few years.

 COC started the night on a strong note and their set was absolutely amazing!  During The Melvins set both Pepper and Woody hung at the merch table, signed autographs and took photo’s with fans….for free!  That was actually refreshing to see in 2022 because most bands charge fans to meet them.

 The Melvins were 2nd on the bill and their set is best described as Sideshow Bob from The Simpsons playing trippy grunge metal on acid.  King Buzz set his own gear up while wearing a covid mask and sans moo moo.  Once the lights went down the theme song from “Sanford and Son” played as the three members of The Melvins took the stage.  Buzz wore a moo moo with a giant eyeball on it while original Nirvana drummer Dale Crover wore jeans and a flannel shirt.  The newest member of the band is bassist Steven Shane McDonald who is best known from his time spent in Indie Rock act Redd Kross.

The Melvins set was long and the psychedelic imagery that played behind them added a trippy, deep, dimensional element that took the audience on a trip.

 Led by King Buzzo, The Melvins delivered a strong, crunchy set that made the crowd move.  Dale Crover is the original drummer for Nirvana and an absolute beast behind the drum kit.

 Ministry were the featured attraction and their set was centered around the bands landmark release, 1989’s “The Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste”.

 Al and the guys in Ministry delivered an industrial drenched, heavy metal soundscape and the crowd moved to their performance like gears in a machine.

 The front of Ministry’s stage featured 4 large chain link fence sections and onstage Al had a podium mic stand set-up with a neon cross.  The touring version of Ministry currently consists of:  Al Jourgensen - vocals/guitar, Cesar Soto & Monte Pittman - guitar, Paul D’Amour - Bass, John Bechdel - Keys, Roy Mayorga - Drums.


The smell of the venue was of clove cigarettes and the extreme strobes that lit the venue were absolutely seizure inducing!  Ministry performed the majority of “The Mind is A Terrible Thing To Taste” and the current version of the band did a great job re-interpreting classics like “The Missing” and “Don’t Stand In Line” which are rarely played by Ministry these days.

 “Supernaut” originally by Black Sabbath sounded amazing and once the band finished the song “So What” the fence came down.  Before Ministry started their encore set a short movie played.  The movie showed an overview of Ministry’s career along with the various line ups throughout the years.  At the end of the movie was an “In Memoriam” portion that highlighted every deceased member of Ministry.  Included in that portion was Paul Raven, Mike Scaccia, and the last person was Joey Jordison.  Al started the bands encore by stating, “This band would not be what it is without the folks you just saw on that screen.”

 For the first half of the set Al wore a fury vest completed with an insane amount of jewelry, face piercings, and striped hair which gave him an out of this world rock star look.

Ministry’s encore was 3 select cuts from their current release, “Moral Hygiene” and those songs were extremely relevant in today’s current political climate.  The last song of the night was a gloomy cover of Iggy Pop’s “Search & Destroy”.  The entire night was wrapped up by 11 PM sharp.

Author: Bob Suehs