Another big release, this one, the third from the Cavalera brothers and their own motley crew. The band managed to make 2011’s Blunt Force Trauma a very different album from their debut Inflikted so how has the sound changed this time?
One thing that’s stayed is the heaviness. This is a thundering album, genuinely unrelenting. However, the introduction of faster guitar segments, more thrash-like, have upped the pace (if that was ever possible) compared to the first two releases.
The production is also far rougher, and this was – I gather – deliberate. The brothers wanted a more raw album with less tinkering done to the sound. In effect, we have the band releasing CC’s Bestial Devastation after having the experience of doing their Arise. Technically a step backwards, but in terms of sound and energy, there’s no loss at all.
Having said that, Max’s vocals are far harsher and are definitely distorted making them more a part of the overall music. This is first most noticeable on “Bonzai Kamikazee”, the second track, which also features a hell of a riff reminiscent of a Slayer rhythm piece.
There are some really heavy bass sections as well, which reminded me of the likes of Nailbomb. In fact, the opening of “Scum” (not a cover of Napalm Death’s track) wouldn’t be out of place on that old Cavalera/Newport release.
The slight increase in pace hasn’t altered the fact that this is definitely the heaviest of Max’s projects, and does differentiate Pandemonium from the first album more than Blunk Force Trauma while still retaining the distinctive sound.
Fans of the last two albums shouldn’t be disappointed, but be prepared for something that is even capable of stomping on those two releases!
Stand-out tracks: “Bonzai Kamikazee” as mentioned above and “Father of Hate” for it’s frenetic mid-song guitarwork.
- 31.10. GSA, Benelux
- 03.11. UK & Rest of Europe
- 04.11. US
- 05.11. Sweden & Norway