July 11, 2008 | | 4

Cavalera Conspiracy, Inflikted

What can you say about the Cavalera brothers that hasn’t been said before? The last time these Brazilian legends go together outside of their Sepultura mothership was Igor’s guest appearances on Max’s collaboration with Fundgetunnel’s Alex Newport in the form of Nailbomb and its 1994 release Point Blank. Since then both Max and Igor have left the band that helped revolutionize thrash and death metal as we know it. So, what can one expect on the latest joint effort from the brothers Cavalera?

Inflikted is an angry, aggressive, combustible mixture of all things metal with lots of little extras thrown in for good measure. It certainly doesn’t sound like any of the Nailbomb stuff the guys wrote over a decade ago, but it does have it heavy influences from both Cavalera-era Sepultura and Soulfly. Would you have expected anything else? Would you have wanted anything else? For those old school Sepultura fans, there are some Roots era influences that will leave a wicked grin across your face, yet there’s also plenty of recent Max goodness.

The title track starts off with some electronic noise before some big drums and chugging riffs come in with Max’s trademark snarling vocals. The one thing that the Cavalera brothers have always been able to do is provide plenty of groove in their aggressive take on thrashing death metal. This album is no different. Through tribal leads and beats, the band is able to keep that groove flowing smoothly. The chorus on this one is pretty damned catchy, as well.

Maniacal drumming and guitar squeals open up “Sanctuary” with an explosive pace. Max’s delivery has got a bit more urgency to it on this one that matches Igor’s blasts perfectly. Not to take away from the rest of the band, of course, but I’m just too stoked to hear the brothers back together again. The mosh at the two minute mark is pretty killer as is the lead that follows.

This one is apparently dedicated to Jesse Pintado of Terrorizer and Napalm Death fame. It’s a pretty dark sounding track with thick rhythms and guitars. The guitar with the chorus is pretty slick and memorable. The pounding beat from Igor is insane.

Black Ark
The start of “Black Ark” sounds like it could have been pulled off of Chaos A.D., but that’s where the similarities end. This one is spitting vehemence is every direction with churning guitars and impressive leads (:45 for example). Max’s stepson Richie appears on guest vocals and gives the song a bit more darkness with more guttural growls. There’s another nice lead at the two minute mark that helps accent the layered vocal attack.

This one featured Rex Brown from Pantera/Down on bass, adding his thick rhythms to the sludgier and doomier sound. I’m not sure if that’s Richie again on the guest vocals but it’s certainly not Max. Again, thick grooves permeate through the length of this song. There’s a sick lead at the 1:45 mark that can’t be missed. Oddly enough the echo added to vocals during the latter half of the track are very reminiscent of the Morbid Visions/Bestial Devastation release from Sepultura from the mid-80’s.

“Hex” starts off with some thrashing riffs and absolutely pummeling drums. Max’s quick delivery is impressive and nearly drowned out my Igor’s thundering drums. This is one is pure anger-fied thrash at its best.

The Doom Of All Fires
This mid paced track feels like a throw away track to me. It’s really got nothing that stands up against the other tracks on the album. There is a nice explosion of drums at the 1:40 mark as Max spits out his vocals.

“Bloodbrawl” builds up from a few big hits from the guitars and settles into a nice groove after a Max grunt. The chugging pace to this one will have your head banging rapidly. The chorus is vintage Max as heard on his later Sepultura albums and Soulfly discs. The guitars from the 2:50 mark until just after the four minute mark are infectious. The acoustic guitar that follows is a slick touch as well.

This next one picks the pace back up after that emotional end to “Bloodbrawl.” It’s got a classic thrash feel to it as the band tear through the two and a half minutes that contain it. It’s straight forward feel is refreshing to say the least.

Hearts of Darkness
“Hearts of Darkness” starts off with some chugging guitars and a mid range delivery from Max. Rizzo is shredding on guitar throughout this track. The chorus to this one is full of anger and angst. It’s a great track.

Must Kill
The final track starts off with a catchy riff and steady beat before Max comes in. This one has a subtle anthem-like feel to it that’s easy to get caught up in. The chorus is pretty damned infectious as well. The 2:32 point sees Rizzo producing another sweet lead.

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So not to come across as too much of a Cavalera fan-boy, but I really liked this album. Sure it’s not perfect, but it delivers the goods that Sepultura fans have been missing for 12 years. It’s good to hear the brothers back together producing the music that only they can.

Favorite Tracks:
All of them

Additional Notes: