Review: Sepultura – Machine Messiah
Written by Matt Drummond
There’s probably a lot of you who believe Sepultura died with the exit of founding members Max and Igor Cavalera. While I disagree, if you look back at the history of the band you’ll find that point can be justified with relative ease.
The most celebrated Sepultura albums to date are 1991’s Arise, 1993’s Chaos A.D., and 1996’s Roots. All three of those albums had the Cavalera brothers in the lineup and all three are legendary. Of course, there’s so something to be said about the post-Max era, so what we’re gonna do here is a little heavy metal Mythbusters.
For the record, Sepultura didn’t call it quits after either of the Cavalera’s departed, instead they have marched on. Since the day the band formed, these boys from Brazil have been heading up a category 666 storm and it’s scheduled to make landfall once again in January, 2017.
Sepultura hasn’t had a studio release for four years now, which marks the longest stretch between albums since the band started. This break has proven to be wise for the Brazilians s their fourteenth album will surely catapult them right back to elite status.
Comprised of Derrick Green (vocals), Andreas Kisser (guitar), Paulo Jr (Bass), and Eloy Casagrande (drums), Sepultura has kept the same lineup steady since 2011. Thanks to this longtime lineup, the band has been able to comprise this 10 track masterpiece with the precision and rapid speed they’re known for.
Kicking off the album is the title track, ‘Machine Messiah’. This track works perfectly as an introduction with a modestly paced opening. That pace soon changes and the tone of the album is set with Green’s lyric, “Bow down to Machine Messiah.”
When track two, ‘I Am the Enemy’ fires up, it’s a barn burner. Sepultura seems to show its power with speedy thrash metal, summoning memories of old-school Sepultura. ‘I Am the Enemy’ sounds like a track that someone forgot to put on Schizophrenia.
Another fine example of this thrash sound can be heard on track nine, ‘Vandals Nest.’ This is unquestionably my favorite track on the record – it’s a straight gasser. I absolutely love this style of thrash carnage and it’s executed perfectly by Sepultura.
Not every song on ‘Machine Messiah’ is a speed ball though. Two other tracks on the album, that stuck out to me, are; ‘Phantom Self’ and ‘Resistant Parasites.’ These tracks may not have that thrash vibe, they’re flooded with heavy, chugging riffs and impeccable transitions.
There definitely hasn’t been a shortage of new music impressing me lately and Sepultura’s Machine Messiah has definitely joined the group. Being a Sepultura fan for 25 years, this is precisely what the doctor ordered. It seethes classic Sepultura style and stands out on its own as one of the first incredible albums of 2017. 9/10