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.
This was the first Ministry album to include bassist Paul Barker, who would remain a member until his departure in 2004. It also marked a shift in vocal cadence, as Al Jourgensen's faux British accent present since With Sympathy was dropped, though it remains (albeit distorted heavily) on the first track. The resulting sound is often cited as a pioneering work in the industrial metal genre, and is considered by Jourgensen as ostensibly the "first true" Ministry album, though he would experiment with this sound prior to its release under different names, such as 1000 Homo DJs. The album title comes from the slogan of Tisdale, Saskatchewan, whose motto at that time was "The Land of Rape and Honey", the local economy being based on the agricultural products rapeseed and honey. The band chose the name after seeing the slogan on a souvenir mug.
The album cover is an electronically processed image of a burned corpse in the Leipzig-Thekla subcamp of Buchenwald. Jourgensen took a photograph while watching a Holocaust documentary on television and distorted the image himself. According to Jourgensen, it was originally rejected by the record label, but they later changed their mind after Jourgensen cut off the head of a roadkilled deer, put it in his truck, drove from Austin to Los Angeles, went into the Sire Records building, threw the head on the desk of the head of the art department and said, "Here's your new fucking [album] cover."