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El Pasoan Documents Making Of New Ministry Album

As a photographer and videographer, Omar Mena has documented some of the most treasured moments of people’s lives.

For two months starting last September, Mena was given what he called the assignment of a lifetime when he was asked to create a documentary of the making of Ministry’s new album, “Relapse.”

Al Jourgensen, the band’s lead singer, has called El Paso home for several years and recorded the album in the Sun City.

?There was no initial concept as to what we were going to do with the footage,? Mena said. ?There were times when the band would be hard at work recording and other times where the creative process reflected the friendship and playfulness between the musicians.?

Jourgensen was never dull.

?Al is an animated person and the best storyteller in the world,? Mena said. ?From his work with Steven Spielberg to his friendship with Tim Leary and William Burroughs, he has a story about everyone. I mean everyone!?

Mena learned a tremendous amount from the experience.

“The first thing I learned was how involved the recording process is,? Mena said. ?There were so many factors that went into making this album happen. Months of work, countless hours of recording, countless interviews, etc., were things I witnessed first hand and simply never appreciated the extent of what goes into putting out an album. Al also has an amazing ear. He hears things that no one else picks up on. There is a reason why he is a six-time Grammy nominee.”

“Relapse” is Ministry’s first new studio release since 2007’s “The Last Sucker,” which had been advertised as their final album.

Jourgensen told Rolling Stone he considered retiring due to health reasons.

“For the last four tours, I’ve been puking up blood,” he told Rolling Stone. “When I’m at home, I don’t drink or anything like that. But when you’re on tour, everything’s crazy. I never said anything about it because I just thought that was part of getting old and going on a rock tour ? you puke up blood! But after the ‘C-U-LaTour,’ I came home and the bleeding didn’t stop. And then one day, an artery exploded in my stomach and I flat lined. They had to defibrillate me. I went to the hospital in an ambulance, I was in seizures, I lost 65 percent of my blood. So it was a good call to suspend Ministry for a while. But then the docs patched me up ? they did some laser surgery in my stomach. I’m leading a healthier lifestyle now.”

For more information about Ministry and to order the new album, click here.

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