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CAVALERA CONSPIRACY – BLUNT FORCE TRAUMA (Album Review)

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51TRyxmUmOL. SL500 AA300 It would be impossible to discuss the collective works of the Brothers Cavalera without making comparisons to their vast, yet very similar other works. While it would be easy to consider the CAVALERA CONSPIRACY to be “SOULFLY with Iggor (yes, two g’s now) on drums,” that’s not a fair assessment of the situation. Despite the similarities in sound and personnel, there is a certain spark that occurs only when the brothers perform together, and with BLUNT FORCE TRAUMA (out March 29 via Roadrunner), Max and Iggor have returned with a set that absolutely obliterates their 2008 debut, INFLIKTED.

Those looking for a throwback to the Cavalera-led SEPULTURA days will be thrilled to find that BFT’s opening cut, Warlordcarries some serious CHAOS A.D. vibes, as does Burn Waco, which features a Territory-esque drum intro.

The rest of the album is a near perfect combination of the recent Soulfly sound and the early thrash and punk influences that have long crept into the Cavalera’s other work. AGNOSTIC FRONT’s Roger Miret takes over lead vocal duties for Lynch Mob, which is a perfect example of the way this sonic blender spins. The talents of guitarist Marc Rizzo and bassist Johnny Chow are also well-utilized, with tracks like I Speak Hate and Rasputin finding the band locked into a cohesive, and brutally effective force. Rizzo’s playing in particular stands out here much more than the last effort from Soulfly, giving his leads space in a manner usually reserved for his solo works.

With a solid set of eleven tracks, the three bonus cuts (available on the Deluxe Edition) feel like what they are: tacked-on. Psychosomatic and Jihad Joe are both decent songs that don’t fit within the overall structure of the record, while the inclusion of the BLACK SABBATH cover Electric Funeral (which originally appeared on a Metal Hammer comp) is a nice reminder of Sepultura’s contribution to 1994’s NATIVITY IN BLACK.

The bottom line on BLUNT FORCE TRAUMA: With Max and Iggor Cavalera, if there’s any conspiracy to be had, it’s why this doesn’t become a full-time affair.

Rating: 4/5

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