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Human Factor Import

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (15 April 1991)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Epic
  • ASIN: B00004SLRC
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 555,681 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I've had this since about 1990 on tape, and it still sounds as good as it ever did. Everything from speed metal to the heaviest riffs, with twin guitars slugging it out and lyrics that avoid the usual 80's/90's rock cliches.
Absolutley awesome, I'm glad its coming out on cd-I'll be buying it!
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Format: MP3 Download Verified Purchase
Still stands today as a classic, IMHO.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Excellent band and brilliant album
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Format: Vinyl Verified Purchase
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x90f9f2c4) out of 5 stars 27 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x910f2f78) out of 5 stars Released A Year Too Late 7 April 2003
By Melkor - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Coming off the excellent but commercially unsuccessful "Blessing In Disguise", Metal Church released Human Factor right about the time grunge started making metal it's punching bag. The success of the album suffered though not because of lack of good material.
Metal Church came out with a chip on their shoulder on this album. They tackle a wide range of controversial subjects from child abuse, flag burning, and bands being sued for subliminal lyrics to greed, debt, and bands ripping off other bands. As one prominent magazine of the time pointed out Metal Church unfortunately had a song that sounded almost identical to the opening riff of a Prong song. No matter.
The album opens with the very average title track attacking the obvious ... late 80's hair bands and rap sampling. "Date With Poverty" is built upon a classic Metal Church verse riff and features a frustrated chorus acknowledging the average debt-ridden american. "In Harm's Way" is a great power metal ballad similar to "Anthem To The Estranged" taking aim at child abusers with a mix of tasteful acoustic passages with a distorted bridge and chorus.
Perhaps the most memorable track is "Agent Green" which has a tremendous middle section and fine drum and guitar work from the band. Despite these strong tracks there are some weaker efforts. "Betrayed" and the "Fight Song" never really seem to get off the ground and seem a bit rushed as opposed to the careful compostion of some of the other tracks. "Flee From Reality" is pretty basic also but none of these songs are actually bad. Mike Howe's vocals sound great and the production is good but when stacked up agaist Blessing In Disguise it falls short.
Depending on who you talk to most Metal Church fans cite this album as their best or their worst. However you look at it, it is hard to go wrong with a Metal Church album and this one is well worth the purchase even if it is slightly inferior to some of their other albums.
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x910f2fcc) out of 5 stars I just can't believe my ears, some music out these days... 26 July 2005
By e5150 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Vocalist Mike Howe's sophomore release with those metal veterans Metal Church really drops a bomb on social issues, and the lyrics are so articulate on the variety of subject matter that I feel it is necessary to let them do the talking.

In my opinion, "In Harm's Way" is the album's centerpiece--a very saddening description of child abuse and it's toll on a human life.

"A lonely child with battered eyes

No joy in innocence they cry

Always has to lie his way through life

I've fallen down while playing ball

But mom beat me up and down the hall

Just because she had one of those nights..."

Sort of along those lines is "In Mourning" which brilliantly covers the topic of how music is blamed for kids committing suicide and rightfully redirects the blame to their upbringing. No doubt inspired by the Judas Priest court case, it presents its message clearly and desperately needed to be written.

"Maybe could it be that no one was there to hear

Did you pay attention to their angers and their fears?

You're trying to find someone to blame who can't be put on trial

The enemy you're looking for is laughing all the while

I mourn for those who have been so deceived

You know the last words that they spoke were "Who loves me?" "

On the lighter side, the title track is a blast at phony corporate pop stars who have no real musical talent, use computer programs instead of instruments, and use samples of real musicians' songs to scam their way to popularity. Sadly it is just as relevant today as it was in 1991 when it was written:

"I just can't believe my ears, some music out these days

The human factor has diminished, in oh so many ways

Fancy footwork gets top bill and I'll put on such a show

One more Midi cable and my 'band' is ready to go

One more money-maker and I'm set for life

Stealing from others will make my future bright..."

This is going on longer than I anticipated so I'll cut it short. But I hope enough examples have been given to really express the importance of this record. Metal Church isn't talking about nuclear war anymore, they're covering topics that hit much closer to daily life and do it in a very effective way. Each song is equally strong in its message: "Betrayed" and its tale of alcoholism; "Date with Poverty" about being poor and hounded by collectors; "The Final Word" about American activists who rag on their own country; or "Agent Green" which seems to be about some sort of political espionage or something. Musically it's one of the best songs on here, but I'll be damned if I know what it's talking about. Interestingly, during the acoustic intro to this tune, Mike Howe's voice sounds alot like latter day Geddy Lee.

Anyway, this is a great album with more typically great riffs written by Kurdt Vanderhoof (who was replaced by Metallica guitar tech John Marshall for the recording of this album, but still contributed songs) and stunningly poignant lyrics by Mike Howe. A very dramatic listening experience.
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x91498dcc) out of 5 stars The best 50 cents I ever spent 14 April 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Normally, you find salvation at church. I however, found Church at salvation. That's right, I picked up Metal Church's album "The Human Factor" at Salvation Army for a mere 50 cents. I've spent more money on freakin' cans of soda. Granted, it's only a tape, but had there been a CD, I definately would have dished out the extra 10 cents. Dusting off the nearest tape player, I immediately popped in this masterpiece. Mind shattering guitars and amazing lyrics, propelled this band to the pedastal of success. Albums like this only prove that music should go back to where it belongs: the 80s. Not only that, but you don't even have to bother with going to church on Sundays anymore. This album provides enough "Church" to last a lifetime. Trust me when I say that your children will be safe spending an hour with Metal Church. Leaving them with Father Downey may be a different story. The opening riffage to "The Final Word" is like meeting the Lord himself. Genius is the only word to describe this album. Sell your soul to get this album if you have to because God will remember those with the courage to blare Metal Church at top volume. Those who sacrifice their hearing will be rewarded in paradise. I can't wait for a new album.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x910f5b10) out of 5 stars Excellent follow up to Blessing, Mike Howe is amazing. 8 April 2011
By todd cash - Published on Amazon.com
This is finally avalaible as an mp3. Thank you epic records even if it did take forever!!!! This is an underated album for the ages. It came out at the worst possible time 1991 the year of GRUNGE. Sigh!!!!! Do yourself a favor and get this album METAL CHURCH fans!!!!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x910809f0) out of 5 stars I hate to admit I wasn't even aware of Metal Church ... 27 Jun. 2015
By Nairb713 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I hate to admit I wasn't even aware of Metal Church when they came on the scene in the mid 80's. I found the first Metal Church cd at a Goodwill store and took a chance on it at $1.79!! Having been a fan of Metallica and Megadeth I figured it might be similar. I was blown away when I slipped it in my car stereo! Looked them up on Wikipedia and have since purchased albums 2-4. The Human Factor and Blessing in Disguise are my favorites with Mike Howe on vocals. Well thought out lyrics and amazing delivery by this metal band! Any fans of 80's thrash metal should really love this band!! So glad I stumbled upon that first cd!! Better late than never!!
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