FEAR FACTORY's DINO CAZARES On BURTON C. BELL: 'There Hasn't Been Any Communication Between Us Two At All'

September 15, 2020

Earlier this week, FEAR FACTORY guitarist Dino Cazares was interviewed by Dave "Higgo" Higgins of Australia's MMM Hard N Heavy radio station about his decision to launch a GoFundMe campaign to assist him with the production costs associated with the release of the band's long-awaited new album. You can now hear the chat below. Several excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).

On wanting to take the already-completed 2017 recordings for the new FEAR FACTORY album and update them before releasing the effort next year:

Dino: "One thing I wanted to make clear is that, at the time, it's public knowledge that we were all going through a lot of legalities regarding the FEAR FACTORY trademark, the FEAR FACTORY name. So, when we were recording this record, there was no guarantee that it was gonna be called FEAR FACTORY at all, because at the time that we were going through these legalities, everything was on hold and the courts owned the FEAR FACTORY name — they controlled the FEAR FACTORY name. So, when we were actually recording the record, there was absolutely no certainty whatsoever that it was gonna be called FEAR FACTORY. As a matter of fact, fans had found this out, and they were actually trying to help us come up with a name, and they had come up with some pretty creative names that I was definitely considering. But, luckily, things worked out and I won my lawsuit and I was able to regain ownership of the FEAR FACTORY name. Now, fast forward to 2020, again, I regained the name in July. I went back and revisited what we recorded, and I was, like, there are some things that are just missing on this record that I just wanna improve and make better for everybody — for everybody to enjoy a great FEAR FACTORY record."

On recent statements posted on the social media pages of FEAR FACTORY singer Burton C. Bell which were of a derogatory nature with respect to the GoFundMe campaign, calling it a "scam" and insisting that Bell would not "benefit" from the fundraising effort:

Dino: "I don't really know who made those comments. Those are on Burton C. Bell's Instagram and other places that he's commented on, but that's not the guy that I know; that's not the Burton I know. Burton does not lash out at people on Instagram or Facebook — none of his social media is like that. That's not the person I know. So whoever is controlling his social media might be the one that's misinformed. Now, those comments didn't sound like it came from somebody who's been in the music business for 30 years. Those comments sound like somebody who had no knowledge of how the music business works. And the reason I say that is because of the comment that said that they don't benefit from this GoFundMe page. And the person [who wrote that] is wrong, because, in the long run, Burtondoes benefit from this GoFundMe page, and he benefits from a great record when it comes out."

On whether he has spoken to Burton directly about his decision to update the 2017 recordings and release them:

Dino: "No, I have not spoken to him. He's made it clear that he's distancing himself from FEAR FACTORY because he is working on [his] ASCENSION OF THE WATCHERS [project]. Now, I'm quoting him, and he's [told the] media and [gone] on record [as] saying that. We have tried to reach each other over the years, but we do not have exactly the perfect relationship. Usually when Burt's working on a project, he disappears and he focuses on that. That I know from 30 years of knowing him and being in the business with him — those things I know. And that's it. There hasn't been any communication between us two at all whatsoever — lately."

On how the FEAR FACTORY creative process works:

Dino: "There's two parts to FEAR FACTORY — there's one that's the vocals, and there's one that's the music. Burt's position is he comes up with the lyrics, he comes up with the concept, he comes up with the vocal melodies and the vocal rhythms and all that stuff to deal with the vocals. Now, when it comes to the music — guitars, bass, drums, keyboards and mixing and production — that's where I come in, and that's my position, and that's how it's been for years. So, I wanted to go back and revisit the music that I had tracked way back in 2017. Now, fast forward to 2020, when I regained the rights to FEAR FACTORY and I had the right to go in and change the music, that's my responsibility — that's me doing that. That's what my position is in. Now, Burt's vocals remain intact. That's on the record, and it sounds amazing. And this record is gonna sound so killer. Because of these donations that we've gotten and all the fans who supported the GoFundMe page, we were able to hire the production team that we had on our last record, on 'Genexus'. That means Andy Sneap is gonna be mixing the record. Mike Heller, our drummer, he recorded live drums, 'cause on the initial recording, it was drum programming. And I wanted to put live drums — I wanted that little bit of a human feel on the record. So we went back and got Mike Heller to play drums. I wanted our longtime keyboardist Rhys Fulber. He didn't appear on the 2017 recording. Rhys is like our fifth member. I felt that that fifth-member vibe that he always brought to all our records, I thought that was missing. So I wanted to bring him in on a few songs. And then the guy who produced 'Genexus', I wanted him to come back, too, and produce all these little things that I was improving on this record. His name's Damien Rainaud, and he came in. So I wanted to bring that team back in. And that's not cheap. Because I want the same thing that everybody else wants — I want this record to be the shit; I want it to be the best it could be."

On the musical direction of the new FEAR FACTORY album:

Dino: "Right now, as of right now, it's got a very, very 'Genexus' vibe, the last record. But we do have some aggression on this record that comes from the 'Mechanize' [2010] era, but I would say a close second to 'Genexus'. It has the groove, it has all the amazing industrial elements that we've had over the years, new stuff. Again, we've got the production team back, and I'm very excited about that. We've got Mike Heller, who's been with us for the past seven years as our drummer. He slams on this record — he sounds amazing... I don't wanna give too much away, because it's not gonna come out till next year. But I can't wait for people to hear it. I can't wait to be on the road. I hope the world opens up. I hope we can get back on the road and start touring again. Those are my aspirations that I wanna see happen."

FEAR FACTORY's fundraising campaign marks the first public activity from the band since it completed a 2016 U.S. headlining tour on which it performed its classic second album, "Demanufacture", in its entirety.

In a November 2018 interview, Bell said that FEAR FACTORY had completed a new album tentatively titled "Monolith". He also said that "legal technicalities" needed to be sorted out before the record could be released.

FEAR FACTORY was the subject of breakup rumors in May 2017 when the band's former bassist-turned-guitarist Christian Olde Wolbers posted a since-deleted eulogy for FF on his Instagram. He wrote "RIP Fear Factory" and appended that post with the hashtag #GrownAssMenThatCantWorkOutShit.

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