Stigmata (song)

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Single by Ministry
from the album The Land of Rape and Honey
GenreIndustrial metal[1]
Songwriter(s)Al Jourgensen
Ministry singles chronology
"Over the Shoulder"

"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.[2] The music video—which was said to get a regular airing on MTV[3]—features gritty black and white machinery, gears, symbols, the band playing live, Paul Barker on a motorcycle, strobe-like montages of eyes (which are the only elements presented in color), and what appear to be neo-Nazi skinheads. The song was said to be Ministry's "finest moment until 1992".[4]

The track was later featured in the 1990 science fiction horror movie Hardware and the 1995 Hong Kong action comedy film Rumble in the Bronx. The 2017 action movie Atomic Blonde (taking place in 1989) features a cover of the song by Marilyn Manson. The 12-inch single remix of the song was featured in the 2006 video game, Tony Hawk's Project 8. In August 2010, the song became available for download in the Rock Band series of games.[5]

In his 2013 autobiography, Ministry: The Lost Gospels..., Jourgensen writes that although "Stigmata" is one of Ministry's most popular songs, he hates it for being "too simplistic" and for its use of sampled rather than actual guitars. He wrote "Stigmata" at the last minute after realising he needed another song to complete the album.[6]:86

Track listing[]

1."Stigmata" (Remix)Ministry6:57
2."Tonight We Murder"Ministry/Nardiello6:02



Additional personnel[]

  • William Rieflin - drums ("Tonight We Murder"), programming
  • Frank Nardiello - vocals ("Tonight We Murder"), cover painting
  • Brian Shanley - cover design


  1. ^ Greg Prato. "Twitched - Ministry". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved November 1, 2017. While nothing here is exactly on par with such industrial metal classics as 'Stigmata' or 'Thieves,' you can certainly see that the seeds for future triumphs are planted on the album-opening 'Just Like You' and the Nine Inch Nails-esque 'We Believe.'
  2. ^ Steve Huey. "Stigmata - Ministry". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved November 1, 2017.
  3. ^ Glickman, Simon (1994). "Ministry". In Rubiner, Julia M. (ed.). Contemporary Musicians: Profiles of The People in Music. 10. Detroit / Washington, D.C. / London: Gale Research. p. 165. ISBN 0-8103-2218-8. ISSN 1044-2197 – via the Internet Archive.
  4. ^ Fontenoy, Richard (2003). "Ministry". In Buckley, Peter (ed.). The Rough Guide to Rock. Rough Guides. p. 676. ISBN 9781858284576. Retrieved October 4, 2018 – via Google Books.
  5. ^ Staff (August 6, 2010). "Rock Band Gets More Tracks From Ministry". IGN. Retrieved May 21, 2018.
  6. ^ Jourgensen, Al & Wiederhorn, Jon (July 9, 2013). Ministry: The Lost Gospels According To Al Jourgensen. Boston, MA: Da Capo Press. ISBN 9780306822186 – via the Internet Archive.
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