I have never bought into the Max Cavelera/Soulfly vs. Derrick Green/Sepultura argument.
I seem to be one of few people who has truly enjoyed the post-Max output. Sure, they have had one or two dips in quality, but the same can argument can be made for Max’s post-Sepultura output! At the end of the day the metal community ended up with two great bands. With that out of the way, let’s get on with this review of yet another cracker album from one of my first ever ‘favourite’ metal bands.
Opening with the title track, it all begins like a mid 80s thrash album, great clean guitar tone, a clean repetitive riff before Derrick’s clean vocals and an open drum beat come in. It all sounds a lot more like a prog song than something you would be used to from Sepultura, but the band have always enjoyed doing things differently, and this song is another example of that. Pushing back on the second track with the shorter, and a lot more punk song ‘I Am the Enemy’, this is more like what has come to be expected of this band over the last few albums.
Third track ‘Phantom Self’ opens with a Middle Eastern feel, showing further musical direction. This is something I think fans of the original line up miss, a band always experimenting, and this has never stalled or changed due to the comings and goings of the more famous parts of the band. The writing heart has been the same for 20+ years now and it shows again on Machine Messiah. Andreas Kisser is on absolute top form musically, taking the band on a wild thrash/prog/hardcore musical journey for the majority of the album, without any real downturn in the musical quality. Check out the instrumental track ‘Iceberg Dances’ for some solid evidence of this.
I could continue to gush over what I really enjoy about this album and the effort the band have put in, from a loose overall concept about modern society’s over-indulgence in technology, to the great art work by Filipino artist Camille Dela Rosa and faultless production courtesy of Jens Bogren, but I won’t. I will merely tell you that you should really check this one out. It is well worth your time, and just might be your next favourite album.
1. Machine Messiah
2. I Am The Enemy
3. Phantom Self
5. Iceberg Dances
6. Sworn Oath
7. Resistant Parasites
8. Silent Violence
9. Vandals Nest
10. Cyber God