Fear FactoryKevin Estrada

Dino Cazares Reveals Exactly How He Gained Control Of The Fear Factory Trademark


To say the road to Fear Factory‘s tenth studio album “Aggression Continuum” has been a bumpy one would be an understatement. It was originally written and recorded around 2016/2017 and subsequently shelved amid separate lawsuits filed against the band’s then frontman Burton C. Bell and current guitarist Dino Cazares. Both of those suits were filed by former members Raymond Herrera and Christian Olde Wolbers.

Last fall Bell acrimoniously announced his exit from the band. His decision followed both a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds to add live drums, add some extra parts and hire Andy Sneap (Testament, Megadeth) to give a new mix to “Aggression Continuum“, as well as the resolution of the aforementioned years of legal battles over the band’s trademarks.

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Ultimately Cazares emerged with 100% control of the Fear Factory trademark, but it was never quite clear on how he managed to do so until now. recently Cazares dropped a heavy hint when he stated in a since deleted tweet made on April 11th, 2021:

“The people who talk shit about me don’t realize what I went through to put this record together, all the $ that I spent for FF to still exist, to keep it alive for the fans, and just for one asshole to shit all over it, because he lied in court and lost everything. I ❤️FF”

Now in a new interview with Metal Hammer, Cazares has now explained explicitly how he obtained the trademark to the band. Speaking on that, he offered:

“If I wanted this record to come out, if I wanted Fear Factory to live on, there was an urgency that I had to fight to get it. I don’t mean fight Burt, I mean fight the courts to get it – fight Raymond and Christian to get it.

When you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you have to list all your assets – your computer is an asset, your car, your house, your businesses, your trademarks. If you fail to list anything there, they’ll take it from you.

That’s what happened to Burton. They took the trademark from him because Raymond and Christian’s attorneys discovered that he never listed the Fear Factory trademark as an asset.

So boom, the court put it up for auction. People think I took it from Burt or sued Burt. But the court put the trademark up for auction, meaning anybody could bid for it – it’s like eBay. People bid on it, but I wasn’t gonna let it go.

Because Burt failed to list it in his bankruptcy, he was not able to own it again. And if I bought it, I couldn’t gift it to him, because the courts would think I was defrauding them and we were in collusion to give it right back to him.

So it was up for auction and I was trying to outbid the highest bidder – and those people were Raymond and Christian as well. It was intense. I was sweaty.”

When asked if he felt that his newfound sole ownership of the trademark drove a wedge between him and Bell, he replied:

“I don’t really know, other than what he said, why he left. Because he never spoke to me about it. Again, he ran away. If you have an issue with me, just tell me. Why take it out there in the media? That’s just old school.”

The cost of the legal battles (and a divorce around the same time) saw Cazares himself file for bankruptcy, while the legal proceedings also saw Bell file for bankruptcy twice. While the ensuing crowdfunding campaign for the album seemed to be the final straw for Bell, Cazares maintains that the funds generated from it were all for “Aggression Continuum. He said of that:

“It was definitely an expensive record. We had already depleted the advances we got from the record company, so I ended up having to do a GoFundMe campaign – a very successful GoFundMe campaign that Burton didn’t agree with.

I’m not sure why, because it would only benefit him if the record comes out. I think he was misinformed or misunderstood what it was about, but I thought I was being very clear in the statements that I made in the explanation for the campaign. You can’t just start a GoFundMe campaign without a reason – you have to show proof of what it’s for. And thank god to the fans who really helped out and made it successful.”

When asked in this latest interview about how much of his own money he put into this new album, Cazares responded:

“[Laughs] I’m not going to give you a number amount, but it was a lot of money. So I’m pretty much broke. But that doesn’t mean anything to me. If I had to go dig a ditch to make some extra money to pay for this record, I’d do it. Like I said, I can’t live with a bad record. If I fought all the way to get here and the record sucked, that would bother the shit out of me.”

You can find a lot more from Cazares on his estranged relationship with Bell, his future plans for Fear Factory going forward and more over at Metal Hammer. “Aggression Continuum“, which will feature Bell‘s previously recorded vocals, will be out on June 18th. A music video for the lead single “Disruptor” can be found below:

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