SEPULTURA - Roorback

Sepultura - Roorback

13 songs
44:33 minutes
***** ***
Steamhammer / SPV


There are few bands who went through so many different phases like Sepultura, and from being the butt of a joke in the mid-Eighties, they became the first Brazilian metal legend, then started experimenting with ethno-sounds, split from their charismatic vocalist Max Cavalera and tried to refocus their career with new vocalist Derek Green. That's the stuff good soap operas are made of, and even the Osbournes look pale compared to this.

And as is the case with soap operas, some people love them, some people hate them. The record label's claim that Roorback is going back to the roots built up expectations Sepultura couldn't fulfil, but that doesn't make this a bad album. What first strikes the eye is the fact that most songs are shorter than three minutes. So yes, this is a hard album, and it is also an angry album, but where Sepultura were death and thrash in the beginning, Roorback is rather violent hardcore thrash, something I was expecting from them anyway.

Derek Greene may not be as charismatic as Max Cavalera, but he is by no means a bad frontman. The music is extremely aggressive but never boring, as prevented by the general short playing time. Still, not the entire album is brutal, there are moments within the songs where Derek switches to clean vocals, and Bottomed Out is even something of a chill-out tune on this album. After the outro, you get a surprising coverversion of U2's Bullet The Blue Sky, and if you are quick enough, you may still get your hands of the limited edition double-CD that comes with a rare bonus-CD with totally interesting coverversions from the likes of Massive Attack, Public Enemy, Exodus, Devo, Celtic Frost and Jane's Addiction. This also shows the band's eclectic influences that are not only metal.

Roorback itself may not contain folk instruments and bunches of guest musicians, but it is a fine aggressive album nonetheless. If you can get your hands on the limited edition, be sure to get it!

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