Fear Factory guitarist Dino Cazares is a pioneer of modern metal guitar technique. His ultra-tight picking, monstrously heavy tone and pioneering use of Ibanez seven and eight string guitars helped to solidify the combination of mechanical precision and brutal riffing that spurred an industrial metal revolution and eventually fed into the development of the djent sound. And Dino’s riffage is in fine form on the band’s new album, The Industrialist [Riot]. The collection is perhaps the most pure representation of the Fear Factory philosophy yet, with Dino handling guitar, bass, and drum programming, and vocalist Burton C. Bell dishing up the kind of anthemic melodies and brutal textures that made albums such as Demanufacture and Obsolete such classics.
“We’ve been getting that a lot,” Cazares says of the Demanufacture/Obsolete comparison. “I think part of that is just because it’s me and Burt! I think it’s the purest you’re going to get of Fear Factory.” The Industrialist marks a departure for Fear Factory in its use of programmed drums in place of a live player such as Raymond Herrera or Gene Hoglan. But the move is not entirely out of character for the band. “When me and Burton started the band in 1990 we were using a drum machine to record our demos” Cazares explains. “Over the years we’ve never been a band that has shied away from technology. We’ve never been a band who hid what we did in the studio. Over the years we’ve used drum machines on certain songs and certain albums, and even though we’ve had live drummers we have edited the drums to be like a machine, and we’ve changed the sounds to machine sounds. So either way it would not have made a difference if we used live drums or not. It would have been the same outcome. Some people are kind of shocked by it, like they didn’t realise that’s part of our schtick. That’s who we are. It’s what we do! Again, even if we had a live drummer it would come out to be the same outcome. And one of the benefits of using a drum program on your Mac laptop is it’s much more cost-effective. And with the way the music industry is going these days, it’s getting really hard to make a solid income because record companies are going down, and the amount of money you would spend in an actual recording studio to record the album, nowadays it’s still pretty expensive. So using a drum program is definitely a much more cost-effective way than hiring somebody to do it.” But Dino remains coy on the exact drum program used on the album. “Oh, I don’t want to promote any kind of drum program that doesn’t give it to us free,” he laughs.
I just interviewed Fear Factory guitarist Dino Cazares about the band’s kickass new album The Industrialist. The full interview will be on I Heart Guitar when the album is released, but here’s a snippet we’re using on the Seymour Duncan blog. Enjoy!
Awesome. This just arrived in my inbox. Cool to see that we’ll hear something new from Divine Heresy before Dino returns to work with the new Fear Factory lineup (Dino, Burton C Bell, Byron Stroud, Gene Hoglan).
Divine Heresy new album coming soon on Roadrunner Records – July 24th 09
Dino Cazares – Guitars, Travis Neal – Vocals, Joe Payne – Bass, Tim Yeung – Drums
The creative force behind the genre-defying, legendary metal titans Fear Factory, guitarist Dino Cazares, has returned with a mind-blowing, scathing new offering that shatters the boundaries of conventionality with unrelenting intensity, precision and speed. This new offering from Cazares’ extreme metal juggernaut DIVINE HERESY also features one of the genre’s most acclaimed drummers, Tim Yeung (ex-Nile, Vital Remains), bassist Joe Payne (ex-Nile) and newcomer vocalist Travis Neal (ex-The Bereaved, Pushed). This pummeling new offering, Bringer of Plagues, redefines the meaning of aggression and takes extreme to an all new level.
Vocalist Neal has undoubtedly proved that he is the perfect fit for the role as he delivers a debut performance for the ages.
DIVINE HERESY teamed up once again with acclaimed producing team Dirty Icon (Logan Mader and Lucas Banker) who has recently produced Cavalera Conspiracy, Gojira and Five Finger Death Punch. This album undeniably upped the ante in brutality, precision and technicality as the group are more focused and tighter than ever before. Bringer of Plagues features the legendary machine gun riffs that’ll take your breath away, combined with some jaw-dropping double-bass drum insanity. After a year and a half of touring with the likes of All That Remains, Static-X, Arch Enemy, Shadows Fall and Chimaira, DIVINE HERESY have proven that they are a stellar live act and are a force to be reckoned with.
Cazares further comments: “With Neal now having a few shows under his belt, his confidence is coming across through the new material. The songwriting process has been great and the ideas are constantly flowing. Collaborating with Tim Yeung, Joe Payne and Neal, all together hashing out ideas in the practice space has been very therapeutic and enjoyable. We all have a collective desire to take our performances to the next level with this release to undoubtedly prove that we are one of the most devastating bands in the scene today.”
Cazares doesn’t accept second best. As you’d expect from the man who co-founded both Fear Factory and Brujeria, his new band isn’t about to tread well-worn primrose paths. Meet DIVINE HERESY – not so much a metal band for the modern era as crimson innovators ready to transcend time and place. You see, when you’ve already made your mark with bands like those mentioned above, there are two things you can do: “I could have carried on being successful in Latin America with Brujeria, and my other band, Asesino,” admits the guitarist. “But that wasn’t enough. I wanted to do something that would go beyond what I’ve achieved before. Something to take metal into the 21st Century.”
“I know that my fans expect something special from me,” says Cazares. “And I would never let them down. With every project that I’ve done, what’s been important is to ensure that I deliver music that doesn’t just meet people’s expectations, but goes beyond them. That’s important to me. I know that I could coast along and do well on the back of my reputation, but that would be to cheat everyone – including myself. I really do believe that with DIVINE HERESY, I’m once again setting the highest standards.
The metal/hard rock world was anxiously awaiting Cazares return since he left Fear Factory and with DIVINE HERESY’s highly acclaimed debut release, Bleed The Fifth, he quickly proved that he was the force that propelled them to the forefront of the scene in the 90’s. Cazares took his performance to a new level with
DIVINE HERESY whose brutal, unrelenting and overall refreshing sound will quickly garner legions of followers who are starving to hear something devastating and unique.
In 2009, DIVINE HERESY looks to leave their definitive mark upon the genre with their most explosive and dynamic offering yet.
“Bringer of Plagues will be released by Roadrunner in Australia on July 24th.
Wow, I just had to check my watch to make sure it wasn’t still April 1. Just saw this on Blabbermouth:
A brand new project has been formed featuring original FEAR FACTORY members Dino Cazares (guitar) and Burton C. Bell (vocals). The band, which is rumored to also include bassist Byron Stroud (who played on the last two FEAR FACTORY albums in addition to touring and recording with STRAPPING YOUNG LAD and ZIMMERS HOLE) and legendary drummer Gene Hoglan (DETHKLOK, STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, DARK ANGEL, DEATH, TESTAMENT), will play a number of shows this summer as well as record a studio album.
So I just realised that if you turn ‘What I Listened To On The Train To Work Today’ into an acronym, it looks like an onomatopoeic interpretation of the sound a finch makes.
Okay, this morning seems to have been one of polar opposites for me. I started my walk to the train station cranking Fear Factory’s ‘Obsolete’ album. When this one came out, I got to interview Raymond from the band (for Curio, the student magazine for the University of Canberra – I was the News & Reviews editor). Allow me to slip into self-indulgent journo mode for a second…
When Fear Factory toured Australia to promote this album in 1999, I was lucky enough to get a backstage pass and a photo pass to shoot the first 3 songs. The band opened with ‘Shock,’ the first track off ‘Obsolete.’ After getting a bunch of shots of the band (including Dino with an Ibanez UV777BK Universe 7-string with a single EMG active humbucker), I turned around to get some pictures of the mad wall of mosh happening behind me. Suddenly I felt ‘a presence’ and I realised singer Burton C Bell was right behind me, getting the crowd to go extra psycho for my photos. So I turn around and we sing the chorus to ‘Shock’ together into his mic. Awesome. Awesome.
Anyway, ‘Obsolete’ is my favourite Fear Factory album. The production is sharp, hi-fi and aggressive, with monstrously tight grooves and direct songwriting. Dino’s guitar tone is clear even when he plays complex chords on tracks like ‘Descent,’ and Burton strikes the perfect balance between his screamy voice and his singing voice. Fear Factory made other great albums before and after ‘Obsolete,’ but this is the one for me.
Anyway, after getting to the train station and stopping at the kiosk for a coffee this morning, I switched over to Robert Plant and Alison Krauss’s ‘Raising Sand,’ which won every single one of the Grammys yesterday, with the exception of the Best Rock Instrumental award which went to Zappa Plays Zappa.
This is a cool, low-key album which reminds me in parts of Page and Plant’s 1998 ‘Walking Into Clarksdale’ album (not only because both albums include the song ‘Please Read The Letter). There’s lots of cool tremolo-drenched guitar playing by T Bone Burnett, and the whole atmosphere is very laid back and real. I would consider this one a bathtub album, or maybe a quiet Sunday afternoon album, sprawled out on the sofa with a sunbeam slowly crossing your bare feet as you read Oliver Sacks’ ’Musicophilia’ or something. Man I wish it was the weekend.
By the way, anyone else notice that T Bone Burnett looks a lot like John Hodgeman (Daily Show correspondent and the PC in those “I’m PC” “And I’m a Mac” commercials)?