Over the Shoulder

Last updated
"Over the Shoulder"
Single by Ministry
from the album Twitch
B-side
  • "Isle of Man" (Version II)
  • "Twitch" (Version II)
ReleasedNovember 1985
Genre
Length6:44(single version)
5:13 (album version)
Label Sire
Songwriter(s) Al Jourgensen
Producer(s) Adrian Sherwood
Ministry singles chronology
"(Every Day Is) Halloween"
(1985)
"Over the Shoulder"
(1985)
"Stigmata"
(1988)
Music video
“Over the Shoulder” on YouTube

"Over the Shoulder" is a song by American rock band Ministry, from their second studio album, Twitch (1986). Written by frontman Al Jourgensen, produced by Adrian Sherwood, and released in November 1985 as a 12-inch single, it was the band’s first recording after signing with Sire Records; [1] [2] the accompanying music video was directed by Peter Christopherson.

Contents

Composition

"Over the Shoulder" has been described as an early example of electro-industrial, [3] [4] as well as synth-pop [5] and synthrock. [2] On Twitch, it is the fifth track with a length of five minutes and thirteen seconds; [6] the single version is six minutes and forty-four seconds long. [7] [2] Musically, the song contains multiple layers of looped synthesizer parts along with distinctive heavy drum machine pattern and Jourgensen's weak vocal appoarch; Billboard editors compared this approach with music of Scritti Politti and Bee Gees, [1] [8] [2] while Miami New Times' Jean Carey wrote that the song "sounds like a giant mosquito." [9] [10] In a later review for the March 1986 issue of Spin Magazine , columnist John Leland praised Sherwood's work with Ministry's “typically banal ideas.” [11]

The single version of "Over the Shoulder" and "Isle of Man" were included as additional tracks on compact disc edition of Twitch in 1990; [12] :32 the song was also to be featured on a 2001 compilation album Greatest Fits , but was left off due to medium limitations. [13]

Music video

The music video for "Over the Shoulder" was directed by Peter Christopherson. [14] [15] [16] It consists of footage of two teenagers stealing a car, trashing a grocery store, making a nails-and-gasoline omelet, and driving off with no apparent consequence. [9]

According to Jourgensen, the director [nb 1] hired two kids to perform actions featured in the video. When the band asked to film in a store, the owner refused. The director allegedly paid the same kids to break into the store and trash it, and the band asked once again. The owner, needing money to pay for cleanup, agreed. As Jourgensen put it, "Everything that happened on that video was criminal." [18]

In 2000, the video of “Over the Shoulder” was featured on compilation album Tapes of Wrath . [3] [19]

Track listing

No.TitleLength
1."Over the Shoulder" (12" Version)6:44
2."Isle of Man" (Version II)4:33
3."Twitch" (Version II)1:59

Personnel

Credits adapted from liner notes of Twitch. [6]

Notes

  1. In various interviews, Jourgensen believes the director to be either Christopherson [17] or Storm Thorgerson. [18]

Related Research Articles

Ministry (band) American industrial metal band

Ministry is an American industrial metal band founded in Chicago, Illinois in 1981 by producer, singer and instrumentalist Al Jourgensen. Originally a synth-pop outfit, Ministry evolved into one of the pioneers of industrial metal in the late 1980s. The band's lineup has changed frequently, with the exception of Jourgensen who is the sole original member left in Ministry. Musicians who have contributed to the band's studio or live activities include vocalists Nivek Ogre, Chris Connelly and Burton C. Bell, guitarists Mike Scaccia and Tommy Victor, bassists Paul Barker, Paul Raven, Jason Christopher, Tony Campos and Paul D'Amour, drummers Bill Rieflin, Martin Atkins, Rey Washam and Roy Mayorga, keyboardist John Bechdel, and rappers and producers DJ Swamp and Arabian Prince. After more than two decades of activity, Ministry went on hiatus in 2008, but reformed in 2011.

<i>The Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Taste</i> 1989 studio album by Ministry

The Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Taste is the fourth studio album by American industrial metal band Ministry, released on November 14, 1989 by Sire Records. The music took a more hardcore, aggressively guitar-driven direction, with Jourgensen inspired by Stormtroopers of Death and Rigor Mortis to add thrash metal guitars to the album and subsequent Ministry releases. As with most of Ministry's work, the album's lyrics deal mainly with political corruption, cultural violence, environmental degradation, nuclear war, drug addiction, and insanity.

<i>Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs</i> 1992 studio album by Ministry

ΚΕΦΑΛΗΞΘ is the fifth studio album by American industrial metal band Ministry, released on July 14, 1992 by Sire Records. It was produced by frontman Al Jourgensen and bassist Paul Barker, and was recorded from March 1991 to May 1992 in Chicago and Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. The album's title, initially intended to be The Tapes of Wrath, ended up being derived from Alister Crowley's The Book of Lies.

<i>The Land of Rape and Honey</i> 1988 studio album by Ministry

The Land of Rape and Honey is the third studio album by American industrial metal band Ministry, released on October 11, 1988 by Sire Records. The album marked a departure from the band's previous two synthpop and EBM records, expanding on several elements introduced in their preceding album Twitch. The less-commercial, industrial-laced collection of tracks incorporates elements of heavy metal such as fast electric guitar riffs, although only the album's first three songs use guitars extensively.

Revolting Cocks band

Revolting Cocks, also known as RevCo, are an American–Belgian industrial rock band and, sometimes, supergroup that began as a musical side-project for Richard 23 of Front 242, Luc van Acker, and Al Jourgensen of Ministry.

<i>Filth Pig</i> 1996 studio album by Ministry

Filth Pig is the sixth studio album by American industrial metal band Ministry, released on January 30, 1996 by Warner Bros. Records. The title was allegedly derived from a statement made in the British Houses of Parliament, in which the band's leader Al Jourgensen was described as a "filthy pig" by MP Teddy Taylor for his onstage theatrics.

<i>With Sympathy</i> 1983 studio album by Ministry

With Sympathy is the debut studio album by American rock band Ministry, released on May 10, 1983 by Arista Records. The group was formed in 1981 by lead singer and multi-instrumentalist Al Jourgensen, with drummer Stephen George being the most notable member of its initial lineup.

<i>Houses of the Molé</i> 2004 studio album by Ministry

Houses of the Molé is the ninth studio album by American industrial metal band Ministry, released on June 21, 2004 by Sanctuary Records. It is noteworthy for being the first Ministry album not to feature bassist and longtime collaborator Paul Barker since Twitch (1986). It was also the first album to feature Mike Scaccia on guitar since 1996's Filth Pig.

Luc van Acker is a Belgian singer, songwriter, and music producer. He began writing and releasing solo material in 1982, and worked with a few other bands and with Anna Domino over the next few years. Then in 1985, he met Richard 23 of Front 242 at the DNA Club in Brussels, Belgium, and thereby became a founding member of Revolting Cocks with Ministry's Al Jourgensen.

Al Jourgensen musician

Allen David Jourgensen is a Cuban-American singer-songwriter, musician and music producer. Closely related with the independent record label Wax Trax! Records, Jourgensen has an active musical career that spans four decades, and is best known as the frontman of the industrial rock band Ministry, which he founded in 1981 and of which he remains the only constant member. He was also primary musician of several Ministry-related projects, such as Revolting Cocks, Lard, Buck Satan and the 666 Shooters. He has also produced and/or recorded with numerous other artists, including The Reverend Horton Heat, Prong, Skinny Puppy, Front Line Assembly, The Blackouts, Alan Vega, Iggy Pop, Adrian Sherwood, Jello Biafra and others. Jourgensen is regarded as being one of the most prominent figures of industrial music,</ref> influencing numerous other groups and musicians, both in alternative and industrial-associated acts.

Paul Gordon Barker, also referred to as Hermes Pan, is the former bass guitarist, producer and engineer of the industrial metal band Ministry from 1986 to 2003. Prior to Ministry, Barker provided bass for the Seattle post-punk ensemble The Blackouts alongside future Ministry drummer Bill Rieflin and his brother, one-time Ministry touring keyboardist/saxophonist Roland Barker, from 1979 until 1985.

<i>Twitch</i> (Ministry album) 1986 studio album by Ministry

Twitch is the second studio album by American rock band Ministry, released on March 12, 1986 by Sire Records. Recorded mostly in London and West Berlin during 1985, it was produced by the band's frontman Al Jourgensen and On-U Sound Records owner Adrian Sherwood. It stepped away from the synthpop-oriented form of their debut studio album With Sympathy (1983) and moved toward a darker, more aggressive sound, heavily influenced by industrial dance groups Cabaret Voltaire and Front 242.

N.W.O. (song) 1992 single by Ministry

"N.W.O." is a song by American rock band Ministry, released as the opening track and second single from their fifth studio album, Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs (1992). An industrial metal song, it was co-written and co-produced by the band’s frontman Al Jourgensen and bassist Paul Barker, and is widely regarded as a protest against then-President George H. W. Bush, featuring samples from his speeches. The song was nominated for a Grammy Award under the Best Metal Performance category in 1993, and was featured in the soundtrack album of Ralph Bakshi’s 1992 film Cool World. In 2015, "N.W.O." was ranked #10 in the VH1 "Top 10 Hardest Hitting Heavy Metal Political Anthems" list.

Jesus Built My Hotrod 1991 single by Ministry

"Jesus Built My Hotrod" is a song by American industrial metal band Ministry, released as the first single from their fifth studio album, Psalm 69: The Way to Succeed and the Way to Suck Eggs. It was written by the band's frontman Al Jourgensen, bassist Paul Barker, drummer Bill Rieflin, session keyboardist Michael Balch, and the Butthole Surfers lead singer Gibby Haynes, and was co-produced by Jourgensen and Barker. An industrial metal track, it features elements of rockabilly and psychobilly, and is influenced by the Trashmen 1963 hit "Surfin' Bird", and Flannery O'Connor's novel Wise Blood; the song's instrumentation is defined by its polyrhythmic structure.

<i>Big Sexy Land</i> 1986 studio album by Revolting Cocks

Big Sexy Land is the debut studio album by industrial rock band Revolting Cocks, released through Wax Trax! Records in 1986. At that time the Revolting Cocks were Luc van Acker, Richard 23 and Alain Jourgensen. This would be the only album made by the group's original incarnation.

Stigmata (song) Ministry song

"Stigmata" is a song by American industrial metal band Ministry. Written by Al Jourgensen, it is the opening track and the only single released from their third studio album, 1988’s The Land of Rape and Honey. The song features distorted vocals, guitars and compressed drum machine loops. The song was an underground hit. The music video—which was said to get a regular airing on MTV—features gritty black and white machinery, gears, symbols, the band playing live, Paul Barker on a motorcycle, strobe-like montages of eyes, and what appear to be neo-Nazi skinheads. The song was said to be Ministry's "finest moment until 1992".

Ministry discography

As of 2018, the discography of Ministry—an American rock band founded and fronted by Al Jourgensen—consists of fourteen studio albums, eight live albums, fourteen compilation and remix albums, thirty singles, five video albums and twenty music videos.

(Every Day Is) Halloween 1984 single by Ministry

"All Day" and "(Every Day Is) Halloween" are songs by American band Ministry, both written and produced by Al Jourgensen. These were originally released by Wax Trax! Records in 1984 as Ministry's “comeback” single following their departure from Arista Records, with "All Day" on the A-side and "(Every Day Is) Halloween" on the B-side, respectively. In 1987, these were included on Ministry's compilation Twelve Inch Singles (1981–1984). The remixed version of "All Day", titled “All Day Remix”, was featured on Ministry's 1986 album Twitch. “(Every Day Is) Halloween” has been featured in the 1998 Rhino Records compilation Just Can't Get Enough: New Wave Halloween.

"Thieves" is a song by American industrial metal band Ministry. It was released as the opening track from the band's fourth studio album, The Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Taste (1989), as well as the B-side from its single, "Burning Inside". The song's lyrics deal mainly with political corruption. The song includes dialogue samples from R. Lee Ermey's drill instructor character in Full Metal Jacket. Ministry's version was featured in the 1992 science fiction film Freejack, also in the 2009 video game Brütal Legend.

Cold Life 1981 song performed by Ministry

"I’m Falling" and "Cold Life" are songs by American rock band Ministry. Written by Al Jourgensen, these were first released in 1981 by Wax Trax! Records, as the band's debut single. Initially featuring "I'm Falling" as the A-side, the single found success via its B-side, "Cold Life", which was chosen as the A-side on release in the UK. In 1985, during Ministry's short-lived return on Wax Trax!, the single was reissued with "Cold Life" as the A-side.

References

  1. 1 2 "Ministry: Over The Shoulder". Album & Singles Reviews. Billboard . Vol. 97 no. 47. November 23, 1985. p. 67. ISSN   0006-2510 . Retrieved February 10, 2019 via Google Books. Thundering beat boxes and vocals as mannered as Scritti Politti heard over the telephone; label debut for the adventurous band.
  2. 1 2 3 4 "12' Reviews". Dance. Cash Box . Vol. 49 no. 24. November 23, 1985. p. 20. ISSN   0008-7289 . Retrieved August 2, 2018 via the Internet Archive.
  3. 1 2 Gomes, Whitney Z. "Tapes of Wrath". AllMusic . All Media Network . Retrieved August 2, 2018. Tapes of Wrath taps into the rise and demise of this innovative and aggressive Chicago horde: from early aggro ('Over the Shoulder,' 'Flashback') to the top of the slag heap ('Burning Inside,' 'Jesus Built My Hotrod') into eclectic obscurity ('Lay Lady Lay,' 'Bad Blood').
  4. Rollman, Hans (August 6, 2015). "Ministry: Trax! Box". PopMatters . Retrieved August 2, 2018. [...] there’s also the fervent environmentalism of the catchy early electro-industrial tune 'Over The Shoulder.'
  5. Stanton, Mike (July 26, 2016). "Fourculture Classics #6 – Twitch". Fourculture Magazine. Retrieved August 2, 2018.
  6. 1 2 Twitch (vinyl sleeve). Ministry. Sire Records. 1986. 9 25309-1.CS1 maint: others (link)
  7. “Over the Shoulder” (vinyl sleeve). Ministry. Sire Records. 1985. 0-20401.CS1 maint: others (link)
  8. Brian Chin (December 14, 1985). "Dance Trax". News. Billboard. Vol. 97 no. 50. p. 51. Retrieved February 28, 2018 via Google Books.
  9. 1 2 Carey, Jean (July 6, 2006). "Stainless Steel Providers". Miami New Times . Retrieved May 23, 2018.
  10. Chillingworth, Alec (August 18, 2016). "Every Ministry album, ranked from worst to best". TeamRock. Future Publishing . Retrieved May 16, 2018.
  11. John Leland (March 1986). "Ministry: 'Over the Shoulder' with b/w 'Isle of Man' and 'Twitch' (Sire)". Singles. Spin Magazine . Vol. 1 no. 11. p. 37. Retrieved March 21, 2018 via Google Books.
  12. Greene, Jo-Ann (April 2, 1993). "Ministry" (scans). Goldmine . Vol. 19 no. 7 (331). pp. 26, 28, 32, 38, 40. ISSN   1055-2685 via Prongs.org archive.
  13. Barker, Paul (June 28, 2001). "Ministry". Ink19 (Interview). Interviewed by Kiran Aditham. Retrieved March 27, 2018.
  14. "End credits". Tapes of Wrath (DVD). Warner Music Video. 2000.
  15. Liggeri, Domenico (2013). Musica per i nostri occhi: Storie e segreti dei videoclip (electronic book) (in Italian). Giunti. ISBN   9788858761106 via Google Books. Nell’86 i Ministry per Over the shoulder lo lasciano delirare con i concetti allo stesso modo in cui loro lo fanno con i suoni, consentendogli di descrivere minuzio come due giovannissimi ladri rubano un’istigazione a delinquere, facendo poi compiere al cantante un furto con effrazione in un supermercato , quindi tendando la metafora tra una macchina distrutta dalla sfasciacarozze e l’apertura di una scatoletta, legando il tutto con il tema ricorrente delle galline in batteria: se ne potrebbe evincere che come atto di ribellione all’omologazione sociale sia giustificato perfino commettere reati.
  16. Horan, Anthony. "Ministry - Tapes of Wrath - DVD Review". DVD.net. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
  17. Jourgensen, Al (January 2005). "Interview de Al Jourgensen (Ministry), pour la sortie de House Of The Molé Paris, fin mai 2004.". Metalorgie (Interview) (in French). Interviewed by Mikki Fajito. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
  18. 1 2 Jourgensen & Wiederhorn 2013, p. 65.
  19. Mühlmann, Wolf-Rüdiger. "Ministry: Tapes of Wrath". Rock Hard (in German). Retrieved March 15, 2018.

Bibliography