Album Review: Soulfly – Totem

Creeping up 25 years Soulfly return with 12th studio album Totem.

Album opener and first single release “Superstition” starts off the album with frenzied riffs from Max and absolutely relentless drumming from his son Zyon. There are some elements weaved into this track that add extra layers to it rather that only add to the charge. “Scouring the vile” then takes over and the album goes up a gear with the addition of Obituary vocalist John Tardy.

“Filth Upon Filth” is a very solo driven track, and is followed by “Rot In Pain” which is probably my highlight track… but then again I have been revisiting some more recent Cavalera Conspiracy albums and honestly it sounds like it was taken straight from one of those.

The album then takes a slower, more purposeful approach. Also included in “The Damage Done” are some wonderful throwbacks that would sustain the appetite of any fans of the early works of Soulfly, before title track “Totem” brings it back to modern day with with the trio all contributing in making this one of the strongest tracks on here. The following song “Ancestors” makes the for perfect partner in crime.

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I’ve done well but the inevitable mention must now take place. I can’t help but feel “Ecstasy Of Gold” has the spirit of Sepultura running through it. Many people may strongly disagree with me, but even after all this time it’s hard not to pick up on the influences.

My feelings then turn to complete surprise as the very mellow and aptly-named instrumental “SoulflyXII” kicks in. There was a part of me that questioned the shortness and placing, but when you see the final track “Spirit Animal” comes in at 9 and half minutes it’s almost excusable. You have the admire the sheer ambitious nature of such a lengthy track appearing on such a short album. Where to start dissecting this one? Truth is I didn’t. I just sat back and enjoyed the ride! I will say this: it does have some nice surprises.

An album for the faithful.

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Totem is out on August 5th

Check out all the bands we review in 2022 on our Spotify and YouTube playlists!

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