| Early Trax
21 June 2004
| June 21, 2004 (2004-06-21)|
2003–04 at Sonic Ranch, El Paso, Texas
Industrial metal, Thrash metal
Ministry albums, Industrial metal albums
Houses of the Molé is the ninth studio album by industrial metal band Ministry. The album was released on June 21, 2004, internationally, and a day later in the United States, through Sanctuary Records.
It is noteworthy for being the first Ministry LP not to feature bassist and longtime collaborator Paul Barker since Twitch in 1986. It is also the first album to use Ministry's new logo, as well as their first with Mike Scaccia on guitar since 1996's Filth Pig.
The album is the first part of the band's anti-Bush trilogy, followed by Rio Grande Blood (2006) and The Last Sucker (2007). It was released in the run up to the 2004 American presidential elections, with George W. Bush being president at the time of its release. Nearly all songs start with the letter "W" in their title, except for "No W" and the hidden track "Psalm 23". The first track on the album, "No W", features numerous satirical samples of Bush's speeches, particularly samples in which he spoke of his war on terror. Compared to its subsequent follow-ups, the musical style of the album is more thrash metal-oriented.
Jourgensen describes Houses of the Molé as a "rebirth" album as he started Ministry anew without long time collaborator Paul Barker who left after the Animositisomina tour due to a falling out. In his autobiography, Jourgensen describes that he wrote Walrus as a way to "celebrate" Barker's departure. In it, it has the words "Paul is no longer with us" played backwards on repeat.
Jourgensen has stated that the name Houses of the Molé is a tribute to the Houses of the Holy album, released by Led Zeppelin in 1973. Mole itself is a Mexican sauce made from chocolate that is nearly black in color, an image that Jourgensen believes represents crude oil.
Former drummer Rey Washam criticized Houses of the Molé for not being credited in the songs he had worked on. As a result, he called Jourgensen a "liar" and "full of shit," which prompted him to sever ties with him. In addition, he said "Houses of the Molé" was "the worst [album] title in the world."
This was the first and so far only Ministry studio album to not chart on the Billboard 200. Due to slow sales, the band left Sanctuary.
In 2005, Houses of the Molé was ranked No. 434 in Rock Hard magazine's book of The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time.
"Psalm 23" is track 23, while "Walrus" is track 69.
Original printings of Houses of the Molé featured "Psalm 23", an alternate version of "No W". Later versions feature a similar version of this song as "No W", and instead feature a 13th (hidden) track titled "Bloodlines".
"Walrus" is track 69. Dark Side of the Spoon, another Ministry album, features a hidden track called "Everybody" which is also track 69.Alien Jourgensen – vocals, guitars (1–4, 8, 9), bass (1, 7, 8), programming, slide guitar (5), harmonica (9), production
Mike Scaccia – lead guitar (1–3, 8), guitars, bass (2, 6, 9), background vocals (5, 9)
John Monte – bass (3–5), background vocals (5)
Mark Baker – drums (3–5), percussion (3), background vocals (5)
Max Brody – programming (2, 6, 7, 9), drums (8), saxophone (9), background vocals (9)
Angie Jourgensen – background vocals (5, 9)
Odin Myers – background vocals (5)
Carl Wayne – background vocals (5)
Kol Marshall – B3 organ (8, 9)
Turner Vanblarcum – DJ voice (8)
Lawton Outlaw – original cover, inside tray art, art direction, design
Paul Elledge – photography
Rey Washam – drums (uncredited)
No W3:24Houses of the Molé Wikipedia