Fear Factory

Mechanize

Written by: PP on 17/02/2010 15:19:57

Well I'll be damned. The thought of Fear Factory reuniting with original songwriter Dino Cazares, let alone writing another masterpiece on par with the bands incredible 90s output, sure as hell wasn't one I was entertaining a year ago. I also doubt I'm the only one thinking along the lines of "a new FF album coming out? meh" when the record was actually announced, but by god was I blown away when "Mechanize" landed on my review list. It's been almost a decade since the last good Fear Factory album, "Digimortal", was released, but here we are, with the best album these guys have put out since "Demanufacture" and "Obsolete" in mid to late 90s.

"Mechanize" can be characterized as crushing, heavy hitting, dense industrial metal that's on par with all the best releases this band has put out during their career, and as a landmark comeback album that'll put Fear Factory back on the map for old fans disillusioned by the mediocre "Transgression" album and the long hiatus, all the while introducing new metal fans to their trademark sound. Rapid-fire drumming, haunted keyboard sequences, growling, screaming, intense clean choruses, and the lot haven't just casually returned to the mix, but tracks like "Mechanize", "Christploitation", and "Industrial Discipline" absolutely crush your consciousness with some of the densest, most mechanical music of recent years, reminding the listener exactly why Fear Factory are considered one of the pioneers of 'industrial' metal. Then you've got the beyond-brilliant tracks like "Powershifter", which has an irresistible clean chorus which isn't poppy by any means, but it nonetheless guarantees mass sing alongs at the band's live shows to come, and "Final Exit", a candidate for the best Fear Factory song ever with its spoken word samples, progressive tendencies, smashingly good usage of clean vocal melodies, not to even mention the superb contrast brought by the thumping metal sections to the song. Yeah, the triggered drums sound mechanical all across the record, but that's the whole point of industrial metal and Fear Factory in the first place, which is why they are so damn effective throughout the album.

In summary, "Mechanize" combines the sound of early masterpieces "Demanufacture" and "Obsolete" from the 90s, even hinting at the band's debut "Soul Of A New Machine" in places, while integrating a modern soundscape that should appeal across several genres of metal enthusiasts and why not even those who are into more 'scene' stuff today. Great music transcends stupid genre boundaries anyway, and by the end of the year, I don't see a reason why "Mechanize" wouldn't be in or near many top5 lists of 2010.

Download: Final Exit, Powershifter, Industrial Discipline
For the fans of: Static-X, Mnemic, Sybreed, Ministry
Listen: Myspace

Release date 05.02.2010
AFM Records / Candlelight Records

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