Jourgensen knows more than his fair share about survival, given that his band has maintained an avid global fan base while evolving from synthpop (complete with faux English accent) to industrial rock to thrash metal. Nearly as impressive as his musical longevity is the singer's ability to kick an epic and well-documented heroin habit. By the late '90s, Ministry's frontman was so out of control that his music was becoming affected and his name had become virtually synonymous with substance abuse in the minds of his fans. Many wondered if he'd be the next gifted artist to turn up dead with a needle in his arm. "I'm not against drugs," Jourgensen says. "I'm against addiction, which sucks, because drugs are very addictive."

He says drugs served a creative purpose for him in the past but had become a liability by the time he decided to go clean six years ago. "Like Jerry Garcia said, 'What a long, strange trip it's been.'"

Moving on: Ministry brings you The Last Sucker.
Moving on: Ministry brings you The Last Sucker.


Ministry, Meshuggah, and Hemlock are scheduled to perform on Tuesday, April 8.
Marquee Theatre in Tempe

As Jourgensen packs his collection of George W. Bush masks and rallies the jolly pirates he calls Ministry for one last journey on the road, the singer sets the record straight about the labels given to his music. Despite being embraced by fans of metal for his recent work and being lauded by rivetheads a decade earlier for bringing industrial to the mainstream, Jourgensen says he saw success because he followed his heart, not the rules of one genre or another. "I don't even know what industrial is," Jourgensen says. "That's some term that you guys made up. All I know is we made music that made us happy."

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The first time I heard Twitch I never looked back. Twitch was an artistic sonic/sound scape that made you listen over and over for new things in the layers of synths, drum machines and samples.

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