During an appearance in the last episode of the “Home is where the darkness is” podcast, original THE FEAR FACTORY leader Burton C. Bell spoke about his plans to return to the stage.
The 54 year old man Bell has been largely inactive on the musical front since the official announcement of his departure from THE FEAR FACTORY in September 2020. At the time, he said he couldn’t “line up” with someone he didn’t trust or respect, an apparent reference to THE FEAR FACTORY founding guitarist Dino Khazars.
Reflecting on his musical journey so far, Bell said “Home is where the darkness is” (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “I had a lot of amazing highs in my career, a lot of incredible highlights. I had devastating low points. But for me it’s all I want to do.
“I consider myself a multi-faceted artist, but first and foremost I’m a musician, I’m a singer. So I want to continue like this,” he explained.
“I love performing on stage. I love being in front of the audience. I love the energy of the audience and I completely miss it.
“I’m making plans — I’m making moves to get back on stage.”
At the end of the chat, when the host Alex Crescioni thanked Bell for his “inspiring” musical output over the years, including that with THE FEAR FACTORY And ASCENSION OF THE WATCHMEN, Burton said: “People will hear them again. When I get back on the road, I’ll be playing…I’m proud of 99% of the songs we’ve done (with) THE FEAR FACTORY. Not all songs are winners, but I’m proud of all the work I’ve done with them. THE FEAR FACTORY, THE WATCHMEN, GZR, CITY OF FIRE, MINISTRY, HATEFACE. There are all these bands that I was part of. So when I go on the road, I’ll play music from all these bands. Obviously, a lot of THE FEAR FACTORY, because I am 30 years old. But it’s not gonna be all in regards to THE FEAR FACTORY. It will be THE FEAR FACTORY, WATCHMENclassic GZR, CITY OF FIRE – just do all of this one. It will be funny. And I’m jamming with guys right now. We are working on it and taking these steps to make it happen. »
Last March, Bell was requested by Joshua Toomey of the “Speak Toomey” podcast what it’s like to see THE FEAR FACTORY go on tour with someone else singing the parts he originally wrote and recorded with the band. He replied, “It doesn’t affect me at all. To be honest, I haven’t been this happy in a long time. More power to them, but I’m just moving forward in my own life, my own career, and I’m just trying to make a name for myself.”
He was asked if he had watched any of the videos on Youtube of THE FEAR FACTORY with his replacement, the singer of Italian origin Milo Sylvester, Bell said, “No, I don’t. I don’t care.”
Burton went on to say that he was not shy about being asked about THE FEAR FACTORY despite the fact that he is no longer in the group. “THE FEAR FACTORYthat’s what I’m known for,” he explained. “And the 30 years that I spent with THE FEAR FACTORY were some of the proudest moments of my career. And all I’ve ever done THE FEAR FACTORY I’m very proud. Even some of the questionable things I’ve done in THE FEAR FACTORY I’m always proud of. It was a great legacy.”
During an appearance in April 2022 in an episode of “The Ex-Man” podcast hosted by Doc Coyle (BAD WOLVES),Bell hit THE FEAR FACTORYthe last album of, “Continuum of Aggression”which was released in June 2021 via Nuclear Explosion Records. The LP, which was recorded mostly in 2017, includes Bell and original comrade FF member Dino Khazars (guitar) alongside the drummer mike heller.
“I was just happy that this record finally came out”, Burton said. “We finished this record in 2017. By the time it came out, I had forgotten everything. ‘Oh, yeah, I remember that song. Oh yeah.’
“There are some good songs on this record. The song ‘Collapse’ is a good song. The title song ‘Monolith’ is a good song,” he added, referencing the LP’s original working title, before it was changed by Khazars.
When Coyle noted that the mix on “Continuum of Aggression” is great”, Bell hesitated a few seconds before reluctantly agreeing. “I guess,” he said. “When I finished the record (in 2017), the record was made and agreed upon, and then other work was done without my say.”
Elsewhere in the chat, Burton said admitted that “it was difficult” for him to leave THE FEAR FACTORY. ” Get away from THE FEAR FACTORY was not an easy decision by (any) means,” he said. “But what I went through for the previous 10 years, the trials, the acrimony, that’s what made me killed. And I just had to walk away to realize, you know, they can take all of this from me – they can take the money, they can take the royalties, they can take the brand away from me – and I realized that it was not so define me. They can take that, but I’m still Burton C. Bellmotherfucker, whatever I have they can’t take. So I’m just moving on and doing new things.”
According Bellhardship is in order for most musicians, who often find themselves the victim of poor contracts, unscrupulous management and, all too often, what appears to be a penchant for self-destruction.
“I had known for a long time that I wanted to be an artist – path before I was in THE FEAR FACTORY“, he said. “When I was in high school, I was like, ‘I want to be an artist.’ To be an artist, you have to suffer. You have to understand that people want to take you all the time – whatever you create, they want to make money and take it from you and just give you a pittance. But being bitter is not my style, it never has been.
“Whatever negativity has happened in the past with THE FEAR FACTORY can’t even stand up to the amount of positivity that’s happened,” he continued. “If you think about the negative, it can weigh on you so much, but it’s not really that big compared to what the band achieved, what we created, what we provided to the music world, and I’m proud and very happy about that.
“No one likes talking to a bitter person at all,” Burton added. “Me for my part. It’s, like, ‘Man, do it again and move on.’ ‘Cause clinging to the past doesn’t do me any good, it doesn’t do anyone else Go ahead and show them what you can do from then on.”
Bellis the output of THE FEAR FACTORY came more than two weeks later Khazars launched a GoFundMe campaign to help him with the production costs associated with the release of THE FEAR FACTORYthe latest LP from.
Bell later said Kerrang! magazine he broke up with THE FEAR FACTORY was a long time coming. “It’s been in my head for a while,” he said. “These lawsuits (on human rights THE FEAR FACTORY name) just emptied me. The egos. Greed. Not just class members, but the attorneys involved. I just lost my love for it.
“With THE FEAR FACTORY, it was constantly, like, ‘What?!’ You can’t take a lot. I felt like 30 years was a good race. These albums that I ended up with THE FEAR FACTORY will always be there. I will always be part of that. I just felt it was time to move on.”
Bell recently unveiled “Paradise Found”, his first exhibition of photographic works, at the Vincent Castiglia Gallery in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Photos Bell presents are representative of its industrial and sci-fi aesthetic.
“Paradise Found” consists of 20 original color photographs of abandoned industrial buildings taken in darkness and fog from 2002 to 2003. BellThe images of are printed on aluminum using the sublimation process – an approach Bell calls “celluloid impressionism”.
BellIt is ASCENSION OF THE WATCHMEN project released their second full album, “Apocrypha”in October 2020 via Dissonance Productions.
picture by Erica Vincent Photos / PR ear