(2012, CANDLELIGHT USA)
Hail and Kill Metal Warriors!
Truthfully, I haven’t followed (nor am I faithful follower) of the band Fear Factory since 1995’s Demanufacture. Since then, I’ve only listened to some of Fear Factory’s songs here and there. When I first discovered the band in 1995, it was during a time when Heavy Metal was in it’s all time low with Metal bands being dropped from their labels and everybody was flocking to follow the trend of the Grunge scene (Man, I really hated that era!!!). Albeit that Fear Factory was a breath of fresh air for me and they were like no other band out there at the time, the fusion of Metal and Industrial Music was the culmination and trademark of that era. However, for me personally, it was lacking something -lead solos! Sure, there are Metal bands out there that have written and released songs without lead guitar solos, however, they are the main staples within our art and culture of Heavy Metal. That’s just my preference. With Fear Factory, they were the game changers in the Metal scene in 1995. Being a band that is mostly based on rhythmic patterns, odd time signatures and sound samples, that was cool, but to me, it got old fast.
Fast forward to 2012, the band hasn’t evolved much since the last time I listened to them, but they still retain their signature sound. Although there have been numerous roster changes within the band over the years, the masterminds behind Fear Factory have always been Burton C. Bell (vocals) and Dino Cazares (Guitars). Now that Cazares is back in the band, they have regained full strength and can now go full speed ahead!
Their latest CD, The Industrialist, marks the band’s return to the concept album. A concept based on an age where all industries are in the form of an automaton and where machines start to think independently for themselves. In the story, the automaton becomes aware of its existence and evolution in which will lead to mankind’s demise. A very cool concept (although not original), so I decided to snag a copy for myself just to see what’s new within the Fear Factory camp.
Well, from what I can tell you, they got my attention and this is the album that got me interested in Fear Factory once again. I wouldn’t say that this CD is ground breaking, but it’s definitely a must have for those of you that are die hard fans of the band. Bell and Cazares handled all of the instruments and the production for The Industrialist with no additional band members available during the recording sessions of the CD. They even used a drum machine as a proxy instead of recruiting a live drummer. The reason being that Bell wanted to go back to that type of sound that they had on some of the earlier CD’s. (Personally, I couldn’t tell the difference nor did I even miss the presence of a real drummer for this CD. It may be a big deal to you musicians out there, but I don’t think anybody really cares to be honest with you. So I’m not going to be picky about that.)
Nonetheless, this is a good CD and I like it. As for the core band members themselves, Bell is a very good vocalist and I’ve always liked his style. Cazares, on the other hand, is a one dimensional guitarist in my opinion. He only focuses on riffs, yet he manages to pull it off all the time and has been successful at it. That being said, kudos to Dino Cazares.
As for the new release, tracks like ”Recharger”, “Virus of Faith”, and “Depraved Mind Murder”, serve as the mainstay and platform from which the CD is based on.
Overall, “The Industrialist”, is definitely a return to the feel and sound of old, just with updated technology. To me, it’s been done before with the new material sounding rather hackneyed in theory and design. I’m not trying to dispel or besmirch the band’s name or legacy that it has made for itself within this business, but the The Industrialist is nothing new (other than being another new release from them).
I give The Industrialist a 3.75 out of 5. Don’t get me wrong, I dig the new CD but it’s not one to stay in my CD player for days at a time. If you’re a die hard fan, go out and get it. For those of you that aren’t, it still could be something new for you to explore. So until next time…… RAGE!!!
Depraved Mind Murder
Virus of Faith
Disassemble: Religion is Flawed because Man is Flawed
– THE KIBITZER
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