Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Review: Soulfly - Enslaved

 It's the devotion to creating only the most ferocious and unforgivably brutal performance with a real spirit of fighting and vengeance that has made Max Cavalera one of the central names and relentless forces in metal as we know it today. His roaring performance in Sepultura is one that has saved the lives of himself and many other names in modern metal who would have come to nothing without their influence and when Max formed Soulfly in 1997 following a difficult and hate-filled departure from Sepultura, the performance was more devastating than ever before. The relentlessness of Max Cavalera is something that could be discussed all day, but for now let's just know that on Soulfly's eighth offering Enslaved it is at an all time high.

 Maybe it will infuriate people who came to love Cavalera for his work in shaping alternative metal and groove metal as we know it today, but Enslaved leans more towards a death metal influence than ever before. Cavalera has stated in interviews that there's been more of an influence on this album from bands like Morbid Angel and frankly, there's a lot of moments on this album that would make Trey Azagthoth and co. quake in their boots. Tracks like Intervention and Legions feature atmospheric backdrops of pure grandeur paired with a ripping assault of juggernaut riffs and mental basslines that all fans of Nile and Behemoth will have come to appreciate. The performance is that of absolute venom injected bile and intense aggression.
 Even when the pure death metal is put to one side the shot of aggression and adrenaline is still present in Soulfly's array of groove metal at it's most frenzied as Gladiator's juddering riff-attack and anthemic qualities make it a thunderous display of modern metal at it's best plus the guest appearance on Redemption of Man By God from Devildriver's Dez Fafara, one of the undisputed kings of groove metal shows Cavalera is very much on board with groove metal and the performance of the two is just as injected with unrelenting bile and adrenaline as the band playing behind them. Plus the ever presence of more South American based instruments on tracks like Plata o Pomo and the alt metal riffing turned up to a level heavier and more evil than the 1990s could have ever offered found in this song and the monolithic closer Revengeance featuring performances from Max's sons Richie and Zyon as well as his nephew Igor Jr. which shows that truly metal is running thick and fast within the Cavalera blood.
 So, by now I may have established that this is an angry album. It's message against slavery in our world past and present (too late to make a Kony reference) is preached in a slamming manner through gritted teeth. The band's performance is very much rough and brutal as rough and brutal can be and Max's intense passion is highlighted throughout the album's violent and shattering delivery. And it's with pride as a metal fan to look at this album and say that Max Cavalera's metal god-like status can proudly live on. This is an album that is purely definitive of heavy metal.

 Soulfly's Enslaved is out now via Roadrunner.

No comments:

Post a Comment