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Soulfly – ‘Totem’

Nuclear Blast
Sepultura, Cavalera Conspiracy, Machine Head, DevilDriver, Nailbomb, Killer Be Killed
Release Date
August 5, 2022
Nuclear Blast
Groove/Thrash/Death Metal

                Max Cavalera has had an interesting career, from the death/thrash of Sepultura’s early days, through their groove metal peak and into their nu-metal dabblings before leaving to create Soulfly. Soulfly didn’t exactly have a stellar start as they moulded nu and groove metal with tribal rhythms, but back in 2018, Cavalera suddenly remembered what he’s good at as Soulfly released the excellent ‘Ritual’ and now, the band are back with their latest album ‘Totem’.

                There is always that anxiety, are Soulfly going to go backwards or forwards? Thankfully, ‘Totem’ follows in the footsteps of ‘Ritual’ because this is another hard-hitting album of thrashing groove metal delivered in the way that only a master like Cavalera can. From the opening track of ‘Superstition’, ‘Totem’ sets down some riffage for what is to come as a chaotic air surrounds this album like a tropical maelstrom with tracks such as ‘Scouring the Vile’, ‘Filth Upon Filth’ and ‘Ecstasy of Gold’ continuing to batter the listener. However, ‘Soulfly XII’ wouldn’t missed if it was omitted whilst ‘Spirit Animal’ begins decent before descending into a tribal quasi-reggae nine-minute snooze fest that would be miles better if it was cut in half or left off all together.

                Yet, when Soulfly do what they are good at, ‘Totem’ is excellent. Yes, there are some bits here which wouldn’t be missed but once again, Soulfly deliver a megaton leviathan which delivers the goods.

"Soulfly deliver the goods"

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