Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Fear Factory – The Industrialist
I started listening to this album and I got really worried, because I had already told the man upstairs, Racer, that I would review this. What worried me is that I heard the first 3 tracks and thought, “Shit, this generic sounding crap is Fear Factory, and I’m supposed to be excited about it?”
Thankfully, the good stuff kicked in with track number 4, “God Eater”, and it was all uphill from there. I should mention also that this review covers the standard edition of the album. Although I hear that the deluxe version has 2 more tracks and a really cool explanation of the story behind the album. Unfortunately I can’t tell you anything about that, so if you’re gonna buy this make sure you spring for the deluxe.
As I’ve mentioned before, I like it when bands stretch out and mix things up, and tracks 4-10 on this album certainly do this. And they do it in a way that no matter what they are bringing you, you always know its Fear Factory bringing it. “God Eater” backs off on the pummeling double bass drum clichés from the first 3 tracks, has some cool effects on the vocals, and brings a nice tempo shift to the album. The fifth song, “Depraved Mind Murder”, has some very cool rhythmic things going on while it kicks you in the teeth. And track number 6, “Virus Of Faith” has some nifty lyrics and melody stuff for you to sink what is left of your teeth into.
“Difference Engine”, the 7th offering on the album, again brings some heavy rhythmic ideas between the drums and vocal lines and it’s cool to hear them sort of play off of each other. And track 8, “Disassemble” continues on with a little slower tempo, a little more variety to the album, and keeps a good flow going. Tracks 9 and 10 were really the ones that grabbed my interest and really made this a cool album to listen to. Number 9, “Religion Is Flawed Because Man Is Flawed”, is a cool little interlude that leads nicely into track 10, “Human Augmentation”. I’m not going to act like I know the Fear Factory catalog backwards and forwards, but I’m pretty sure there is nothing else quite like this track in their previous work. Very cool, almost ambient track which goes on for about 9 minutes and showcases a very different side of the band.
All in all, I really dig this album. It would be a great CD for me for a road trip because you get some variety, some change of pace, and you don’t just get the shit kicked out of you for duration of the album. Which is a mistake, in my opinion, that many metal bands make, loading up an album with 8 or 10 very similar, very brutal tracks, but the songs also lose their identity because they are not different enough. So thank you, Fear Factory, for exploring your many sides, and thanks for this release.