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Fear Factory’s Dino Cazares: “If We Were a Part of the Nü Metal Genre, Maybe We Would’ve Been as Big as Some of Those Nü Metal Bands”


Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: commercial success and artistic vision often do not go hand in hand. In fact, they often work against each other. In the case of industrial metal act Fear Factory, guitarist Dino Cazares thinks that the band’s unwillingness to stick to one subgenre really hurt the band in the long run. Speaking to Heavy New York, he said:

“The good thing is that we could branch out and play with a bunch of different bands. That was good. But the bad thing is that we never belonged to one genre… If we were a part of the nü metal genre, maybe we would’ve been as big as some of those nü metal bands. It almost seemed like sometimes we were too heavy for the nü metal fans and then maybe not nü metal enough, but maybe we were too nü metal for the heavier fans. So, I don’t know. We kind of sat in between — we were like a snake in between all those bands and all those different genres. So we were kind of like right there, even though what we created later on — not even just later on — but what we created over the years was something that would inspire all those different bands. Mainly in the syncopated kick-and-guitar music and then obviously the vocals inspiring all those different types of genres. Maybe some of those genres don’t even know where it came from, because they might have been listening to Killswitch Engage, even though Killswitch Engage was kind of more — the formula of the vocals was very much inspired by Fear Factory. Because sometimes a new generation of fans emerge and a new style of music emerges and people don’t really know the history of where it all started. But if you go back, some of that stuff stems from Fear Factory and going into bands later on, like Killswitch and All That Remains and so on and so on; there’s a million bands like that. So it was kind of like Pantera with the groove and then Fear Factory with the vocals.”

In addition, Cazares spoke about how Fear Factory hasn’t been part of the nü metal or death metal resurgences because he feels they didn’t stick to one particular genre.

“We kind of had our foot in the door in all these different genres, and in some ways I almost felt like it hurt us ’cause we weren’t just one thing. ‘Cause right now there’s like a resurgence of death metal, a resurgence of nu metal, but there’s no resurgence of [the kind of] metal we do. So it’s kind of weird that we’re not part of the resurgence of death metal or nu metal because we weren’t just those type of things… I’m just saying that we were a part of all of it in a way — like I said, we had our foot in door in all those different genres, but we didn’t particularly fit into one genre. And that to me could have been part of the reason why we’re not part of a resurgence of certain genres.”

A couple thoughts on this part. First and foremost, Fear Factory have always been industrial metal before death or nü, which probably explains why those genre resurgences haven’t helped Fear Factory. It’s also worth remembering that Fear Factory have dealt with personnel issues and have prioritized touring over recording recently.

If you want to see a classic Fear Factory set, you should be at Metal Injection Festival.

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