Back with their new album, 'The Industrialist,' Fear Factory, were the first band to combine Death Metal growls, cutting riffs and extreme drums with electronic sounds, to create Industrial Death Metal. This new album sees the return to that classic trademark sound, partly due to Dino Cazares' trademark riff which is dominating and ever present on this, the second album since his return to the band in 2009 after an absence of seven years.
Other key factors are Burton's exceptional vocals, ranging from powerful clean to equally powerful growl and producer/band keyboardist Rhys Fulber who is the key to that unique industrial sound and who adds a chaotic atmosphere to the music. The album also has the addition of Matt DeVries on bass.
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'The Industrialist' is a concept album, based on a story by Burton about the Industrialist, the main character and the incarnation of all industries in the form of an automaton who becomes sentient as it collects memories with each passing day.
Through observation and learning, it gains the will to exist. Something originally created to help man, now becoming the cause of his demise.
This ninth full length album is ten brutal songs that come at you in an unbroken onslaught of sound that's very drum dominated. The band in the past utilised the powerful, precise drumming skills of Raymond Herrera, however this time no drummer was used on the album, Dino and Burton opting for programmed drums instead.
The album opens with the title track, complete with spoken intro before breaking into Dino's trade mark riffs. The programmed drumming is quite apparent on this track but sounds more natural on some of the other tracks.
The standout tracks for me are 'Recharger', a faster paced track, 'New Messiah', 'Depraved Mind Murder' with its sudden abrupt ending and 'Virus Of Faith'. This is mainly because of the vocals on these four tracks, which I thought were particularly outstanding due to the well balanced mix of clean and growl.
The final track, 'Human Augmentation' is a nine minute atmospheric outro. The production by Rhys Fulber is a clear and crisp.
This is on the whole a really good album. A couple of tracks lost me, but definitely worth a good few spins.
The album was mixed by Greg Reely (Paradise Lost, Machine Head), with additional tracking by Logan Mader (Gojira, Divine Heresy).
'The Industrialist' is out on June 5th on Candlelight Records.