Fear Factory‘s classic line up changed my life. Seeing them years ago at Tramps in NYC playing “Piss Christ” was the most intense baptism of musical fire and a complete revelation on what intensity of sound merged with science fiction could accomplish. It has been agonizing as a fan over the years to see the fighting and constant musical chairs, despite many great albums along the way. And don’t get me started on Christian’s occasional very wacky hot take comments like recently downplaying the problematic nature of the Confederate flag when reminiscing about Pantera on IG (who I love but it is more than ok to critique about that). Raymond has always been super cool to me and with the exception of Gene Hoglan it also was a drag to see his impact downplayed by drum machines or lesser, if talented, characters behind the kit.
Burton C. Bell has now quit the band (who endured lengthy litigation between the classic line up members in recent years) and has released a lengthy, sad fucking statement you can read HERE. It seems pretty damn harsh on Dino, much as I love Burt. I can’t even write all the deets out for you all right now because I am so effin’ bummed.
Sadly, I now hope Dino just finishes the last album mix tweaks and releases it and lets the band end. It will be sad but we will have the final album. It isn’t a band that would be cool to continue without Burton. He is intrinsically linked to the psychic machinery of the material like a cyborg with head implants. Whenever key elements have been removed it has somewhat worked but also something has been slightly missing. Some bands are a sum of their parts and that chemistry.
Dino should just start Divine Heresy again (replacing Tommy in that is a LOT easier than replacing BURTON in FER FACTORY). Burton is happy with Ascension Of The Watchers. The other guys should do a follow up to the critically undervalued Arkaea record Years In The Darkness. But if Fear Factory can’t be fixed then spare parts isn’t the solution.