Soulfly “Ritual”

In 1998 when I bought Soulfly’s first record, I was introduced to Max Cavalera and his legacy of Brazilian art-rock metal. I went backwards and familiarized myself with Sepultura, who just two years prior released Roots, one of metal’s classic 90’s records and then studied the late 80’s efforts of the band who seemed to emulate the dark thrash tendencies of classics like Death and Exodus. Twenty years later, eleven albums deep, Max is still grinding his moniker with little variation to his acclaim. It’s absolutely terrific to have this exist in the metal space, Soulfly records have become routine, formulaic, and even predictable, in that each one will always feature tribal influences alongside thrash metal mania. While the record is instantly forgettable (honestly, in two years who’s going to recall tracks off Ritual vs. Archangel?), it does bring Max and company back into a relevant space for him to get a proper billing on festivals and spring a new merch line to continue his legacy in the metal community. It’s worth mentioning that “Eye For An Eye” is still the band’s best track.

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