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Surgical Meth Machine – Surgical Meth Machine


Last Updated on 12:03 PM by Giorgos Tsekas

Genre: Industrial
Country: U.S.A.
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Year: 2016

Metal may be one of the main representatives of extreme music but it’s not the only genre that does that. Industrial music with bands like Skinny Puppy and Ministry manage it just as well. Sometimes that genre is even more extreme, at least compared to the more “calm” subgenres of metal, regardless of how much we love it. Al Jourgensen, known from the band Ministry, continues that tradition with his new project, Surgical Meth machine and succeeds in a sonic attack that will surely bleed some people’s ears.

Listening to this self-titled album for the first time, it is likely to make the mistake of assuming that Surgical Meth Machine are nothing more than Ministry with another name. Partly justified as they share Al, but still a wrong assumption. This project keeps all the good elements of Al’s main band and combines them with new ones in a pretty good way. That is of course logical as its creator carries his extreme sound experience and a project enables him to experiment more without fear of ruining his style or a negative approach from his fans for no other reason than adding new  and/or different elements. Not that Al Jourgensen would really care about that, after all Ministry are well known for their experimentation, but it is still easier to do that with a project.

It is difficult to present all the music details of this album through text. Starting from the drum machine that cracks heads like eggs during Greek Easter (editor’s note: it is a custom in Greece to crack boiled red eggs by hitting an egg with another egg), to the guitar riffs that make us go round and round and finally the guitar solos that want to remind us that industrial and metal are communicating vessels, “Surgical Meth Machine” is here to break our necks, as befits an extreme music album. And finally there is a surprise cover, “Gates of Steel”, originally from Devo, an interesting band that was founded in 1972. Really good cover and it’s different from the rest of the album.

Of course it wouldn’t be the creation of Al Jourgensen if it lacked the appropriate lyrics. From the first song, “I’m Sensitive”, that speaks of the way people get insulted on facebook, something that is completely stupid sometimes, to “Rich People Problems”, a song about the alleged problems of the rich (see “this fois gras sucks”, “I don’t drink tap water” etc) or the “Unlistenable” that basically attacks today’s music industry, all the lyrics are really valid and criticize our modern society and its situations.

Overall it’s a damn good album. Maybe not for everyone, it’s not a purely metal album, but if you are fans of industrial or if you decide to listen to something different then “Surgical Meth Machine” is exactly what you are looking for.


Angel Spiliopoulos
Angel Spiliopoulos
"He who fights with monsters should be careful lest he thereby become a monster. And if thou gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will also gaze into thee."

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