1. Intro #4 2. Dark Wood Of Error 3. Convicted In Life 4. City Of Dis 5. False 6.Fighting On 7. Intro #2 8. Ostia 9. Buried Words 10. Nuclear Seven 11. Repeating The Horror 12. Intro #1 13. Crown And Miter 14. Intro #3 15. Still Flame
The Brazilian thrashers reroute their journey back to past glories with new effort and a renewed purpose. Indeed "Dante XXI", the new Sepultura record, is a high quality, highly entertaining metal record that showcases that older "tribal" sound with an impressive songwriting display. For the band's tenth album to date they revisit an old tale, Dante's "Divine Comedy". Musically the band explore all aspects of the classic, including Paradise, Purgatory, and Inferno. It is interesting to see another band tackle this intricate and detailed vision of Hell, and with this particular selection of songs the band really do it justice given their seasoned ability and veteran songwriting skills.
Everything I have loved about this band circa "Chaos A.D." is back on display here. I was a bit turned off by albums like "Against", "Nation", and even "Roor Back" to an extent, really preferring Cavalera's character and vocal delivery more than current singer Derrick Green. However with this new album I think Green puts in his best performance, really coming into his own with a harsh, more spoken voice that seems to vibrate and move through thunderous passages and blistering fast riffing. Green's obvious highlight here is the dark and moody mid-tempo cut "Nuclear Sevens", complete with a massive groove throughout backing Green's raspy, spoken delivery. The tribal effects are in full effect as well, really moving and enhancing ripping fast guitar chops and insuring each track has its own ritual. "Dark Woods Of Error" and "City Of Dis" showcase that well used tribal vibe, enhanced by quick double bass stomps from master skinsman Igor Cavalera and titanic grooves courtesy of Andreas Kisser. One can only brace for deep impact on the earthquake grooves of "Fighting On" and the classic Sepultura sound of "Buried Words". It is interesting to see all of the other elements in place here, with my favorite "non-metal" part simply being the use of a chello on "Ostia" and of course the FOUR intros provided here, each recognizing the other with different aspects and emotions. My favorite cut here is "Convicted In Life", a slapping ball buster that storms through Green's energetic mic use and a flashy, high flying lead from Kisser.
Bottom Line - Easily the best Sepultura record since "Chaos A.D.". If you have been holding out on that ONE Sepultura record to bring you back into the racket, please pick this one. It is a simple equation really....Dante XXI + 2006 = Fists Held High! This is certainly a respectable and engaging record that introduces us to the Sepultura of old while still introducing new elements and styles. Highly recommended!
About this Writer: Eric Compton // Eric Compton lives in the most haunted city in the world, St. Augustine, Florida with his family and two yorkies. He has served as senior editor for MaximumMetal.com for nearly 10 years and is the author of the heavy metal book series--Denim & Letters. His reviews, interviews and social commentary has been featured on websites like Brave Words, Blabbermouth, Metal Temple, Metal Rules, Ultimate Metal, Metal Maniacs and Wikipedia.
Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details