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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Fear Campaign in New York City

On Sunday July 25th, the legendary band Fear Factory brought their "Fear Campaign" tour to New York City's Irving Plaza. The bill also featured Alaska's 36 Crazyfists, After the Burial, Divine Heresy and Baptized in Blood. What we experienced was proof that the New York Heavy Music scene is standing strong. Before we entered the venue, we ran into Fear Factory's drummer Gene Hoglan. We chatted with him for a while about music, and he expressed his concern about illegal downloading. From what he told us, his new DVD "The Atomic Clock" was downloaded over 50,000 times since its release in June. That would make any artist who is constantly working on his craft, feel uneasy. Nevertheless, he signed some autographs, did some phone calls, smoked some cigarettes and was eagerly waiting for the time to get on stage and destroy.

After we parted ways with Hoglan, we arrived at Irving Plaza just in time for Divine Heresy. They delivered a vulgar display of punishing brutality. Dino's guitar work was on fire, and he definitely was not saving energy for his second set with Fear Factory. The rest of the band were as tight as a boxing glove. Following Divine Heresy was After the Burial, a band with Meshuggah like breakdowns that are well blended with brutal vocals. Then it was time for 36 Crazyfists, who definitely got the house warmed up for the mighty Fear Factory.

As soon as the lights went out the crowd started pacing around, as if a beast was about to be unveiled. Legendary drummer Gene Hoglan was the first one to come out and was very hard to miss. The man is a giant and watching him smash his drum kit is amazing. We still can't figure out how he does it. Once Hoglan sat behind his kit, bassist Byron Stroud took his spot, and then the crowd went nuts when guitarist Dino Cazares stepped on stage. Finally vocalist Burton C. Bell welcomed the crowd by saying: "New York City, we are Fear Factory and this is Mechanized"! From the second the band hit the first note, the kids went ape-shit. We started inside the pit and experienced some brotherly slam dancing through Shock, Edgecrusher and Smasher/Devourer, which are all tracks from their album Obsolete. Then we crowd surfed like very few know how to do and ended up on the side of the stage by Dino. It was surreal to be watch the band up-close and personal, and to hear how well crafted their music is.

They played an hour and twenty minutes set. During that time Fear Factory owned New York City, they definitely had the Metallic keys to the city that never stops rocking. They played classics like Replica, Demanufacture, Scapegoat, Martyr and they even played Hunter Killer, which was the highlight of the night. Before Fear Factory finished their set, they got a group picture with the entire venue and that is when the kids went the craziest! If the "Fear Campaign" tour comes to a city near you, don't be scared, Fear Factory will make sure you go home safe and sound. Perhaps with your ears bleeding, but you can't hold them responsible. You can only hold your love for Heavy Music responsible!

This sums the night up: "Headbangers come in all ages and races. We are always hungry for some aggressive music. The type of music that refreshes the spirit and washes out all the anger inside ones soul. For an outsider it seems like senseless noise, but for us the Heavy Music fans it is controlled chaos." -Jo Schüftan (Horns Up Rocks)

Pictures by: Mitchell Damien Maurer

Related links:
Fear Factory on MySpace
For the latest on Fear Factory, follow them on twitter: www.twitter.com/Fear_Factory

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