Dave Fonseca of MetalReview.com recently conducted an interview with DIVINE HERESY/ex-FEAR FACTORY guitarist Dino Cazares. An excerpt from the chat follows:
MetalReview.com: How long did it take you to find a vocalist, and what was it about Tommy [Cummings; a.k.a. Tommy Vext] that made him stick out from the rest of the crowd. Were you looking for somebody who could sing clean and carry some of those big choruses you like to write?
Dino: Before I started this project I had a couple people recommend Tommy to me. The President of Century Media Records (Robert Kampf) as well as Melissa Cross, who is a vocal coach, recommended Tommy to me. Melissa Cross cross has taught Corey from SLIPKNOT, Randy from LAMB OF GOD, and Phil from ALL THAT REMAINS how to protect their voice and how to use it properly. So, I was like, "Wow, a vocal coach recommended him, that's pretty impressive." So, I sent him the CD and he sang on it and I was very impressed. What I like about him is that he's very aggressive, very powerful, and he can actually sing. If we wanted to be a death metal band — we could, if we wanted to be a screamo band — we could, if we wanted to be some melodic band — we could. That's the talent this guy has; he can do it all. But, that's what DIVINE HERESY is. We're an aggressive, well-rounded metal band. I wanted to find musicians that could play and mix all different genres of music. Obviously with Tim Yeung it's gonna be insanely fast, and with a singer like Tommy Vext he's gonna do whatever is called for. What I like about him is that he really has the anger, the power, the aggression — he sounds pissed.
MetalReview.com: Do you feel more liberated as a songwriter now because you can write any kind of part you want and he can sing over it and nail it?
Dino: Correct. And Tim Yeung as well. He played with NILE but he also toured with HANK WILLIAMS III, which is country. So, we can play whatever we want. It's what is in us. And definitely the aggressive side of metal is in us. DIVINE HERESY will always be a metal band. Sure there will be some other stuff thrown in, but the majority of it will be in your face metal. I think some of you people get confused when you look at who the players are and you make assumptions about what kind of music it's gonna be. We also have Joe Payne from NILE. So when people hear those names they expected it to be all (grunts) death metal. But we're not. That's the one thing about this band ... we're not. We're kind of between a rock and a hard place. We're not death metal enough for the death metal guys and we're not FEAR FACTORY enough for the FEAR FACTORY guys. We're trying to make our own sound, and I think once people get past all that genre stuff they will realize that DIVINE HERESY is a killer fucking metal band.
MetalReview.com: When you're on the road do you like to get out into the crowd and socialize or do you try to stay away from that.
Dino: Usually what I do is go over to the merch both and wait for the kids to come over and I sign all their shit. Y'know hang out and have a beer. As long as I'm not busy. Sometimes the bigger the band gets the busier you get. Right now DIVINE HERESY is at a smaller level where we can go out into the crowd and have a beer, sign shit, shoot the shit and whatever. But, when I was in FEAR FACTORY it became like a headache. I had so much shit to do I didn't have any time to hang out. It sucked. I just wanna go hang out and have a beer and talk to the kids.
MetalReview.com: Inevitably people are going to compare whatever DIVINE HERESY does to whatever FEAR FACTORY has put out for the last couple of years. Does that faze you at all?
Dino: (laughs) I don't really think there's much of a comparison do you? If people compare "Bleed The Fifth" to FEAR FACTORY it will be to old FEAR FACTORY that I created. They can't compare it to new FEAR FACTORY because I think we all know what that is.
MetalReview.com: Are you competitive with those guys at all or are you over that?
Dino: I don't think they're any competition at all do you?
MetalReview.com: Well, the two bands are completely different animals.
Dino: (laughs) Yeah, two different animals. I don't think there's any competition at all. I definitely feel competitive with myself and what I created back in the day. I would love to write another "Demanufacture" classic album. Not something of the same style, but a classic metal record. I think that is something that all musicians strive for. To have that METALLICA "Master of Puppets"-, SLAYER "Reign in Blood"-, FEAR FACTORY "Demanufacture"-, PANTERA "Vulgar Display of Power"-type album. That's my goal for this band; to try and write that record.
Read the entire interview at MetalReview.com.