Fear Factory - _Obsolete_
by: Adrian Bromley (
Man, I was waiting and waiting for this record to surface, and, now that I have it, I can honestly say that I have been let down. I never thought I'd say this about one of my favorite bands, but I think they've lost their edge. Honestly. Where is the aggression? Where is the innovativeness of the Fear Factory sound? Where are Burton's deep growls? Oh my! While there are a few winning factors about _Obsolete_ (title track, "Shock" and "Hi-Tech Hate"), the rest of it is full of the filtered and rehashed Fear Factory vocal styles and guitar riffs that we have become accustomed to over the last few releases. And to boot, the band has opted to use more melody within the numbers, rather than sparingly use both growls and melody as they had done with their brilliant last effort, 1994's _Demanufacture_. The one aspect of the LP that may have die-hard fans turning away is Burton C. Bell's solo singing accompanied by a string ensemble of album ender "Timelessness". Again, oh my! I honestly can say, after several listens of this record, that I see where the band wanted to take their music, but it's quite apparent their ideas didn't mesh too well in the end product. It's a sad day for a music fan when one of your fave bands has become human just like yourself.
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