As you may know, musical pioneer Al Jourgensen has officially closed the book on his legendary industrial-metal band Ministry, sending them out in style with their excellent final album From Beer to Eternity (check out our review here), followed by his eye-opening autobiography Ministry: The Lost Gospels. But Uncle Al ain't settling down just yet. For his next creative endeavor, Jourgensen chose to explore the same themes he's tackled in his music for three decades... but this time, in the guise of a comic book antihero with musical super-powers.
Ministry: The Devil's Chord – The Chronicles of Alien F. Jourgensen is a comic series with a unique concept: each of the thirteen issues will be based on one of Ministry's albums – including classics like The Land of Rape and Honey, The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Taste, Psalm 69, Filth Pig, Rio Grande Blood, The Last Sucker, and Relapse. The overall story arc draws heavily on the real-life experiences of Al and his wife Angelina, and the pair has teamed up with acclaimed UK artist Sam Shearon (who has also created artwork for Rob Zombie, Iron Maiden, KISS, Fear Factory, Rammstein, and a Pale Horse Named Death) to bring them to life in comic form.
"I've been wanting to step away from music for a bit,” Jourgensen says, “then I met Sam and then poof! Sam turns me into a superhero... sign me up for that!”
"To be immortalizing Al Jourgensen in a comic book series is an honor and a thrill ride into his life that not many people get to see,” say Shearon, a life-long Ministry fan. “Sitting down with Al and Angelina has been one of the most exciting projects I've ever worked on. There were many days and nights where Al and I would be still awake at around 5am watching the sunrise, surrounded by empty beer bottles. This is one hell of an adventure that I personally would love to see on the big screen one day."
Al's personal stories are just part of the larger plotline, which will pit our hero's music-based powers against alien invaders, occult conspiracies, diabolical corporations, and evil record label executives. Counterculture icons including William Burroughs and Timothy Leary (whom Jourgensen has known and worked with in the past) will make "guest appearances" in the comic, and Al hinted that some of his musical peers – including Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor and Gibby Haynes of Butthole Surfers – might show up as well.
In addition to Shearon, other artists will be contributing alternate covers for each issue, including Metalocalypse director Jon Schnepp, Life of Agony bassist Alan Robert (Wire Hangers), The Other Dead creator Digger T. Mesch, and FEARnet's very own Spider One!
Ministry: The Devil's Chord is set to premiere at next year's San Diego Comic-Con. More news to come!