What should I say? SEPULTURA had been one of my first bands in the Thrash realm, I’ve had a weakness for their albums. But those were the other ones, "Arise", "Chaos A.D." and "Roots". And these classics had everything that “Against” unfortunately does not have. Should I have to characterize the album with one word, then I would pick “aimless”. It seems as if Max Cavalera had not just left the band, but also taken all creativity with him and left SEPULTURA without ideas and with lots of confusion.
Unfortunately everything on this album is mediocre and the few brighter moments are rather taken from their earlier works and not really anything new. So “Boycott” reminds me so much of the “Roots” album that I am almost tempted to scream “Roots, Bloody Roots” and other songs also have older material shining through.
But that would not be the worst, rather my main point of criticism is that the album does not show any cohesion, not just between songs, but even within the tracks. The transitions seem hacked up, more “tried” than “succeeded” and there are only a few interesting passages within a song at best, but not one really good or even outstanding composition. Everything appears very experimental, but not well executed. Be it rhythmic spoken word in the style of RUN DMC or just almost Grindcore-like screaming, everything seems pieced together, immature and almost on random. Once you manage to find an appealing part, the next one just tramples over it and also instrumentally only little reminds me of the old SEPULTURA, the percussion has neither the power nor the gripping rhythm, there are a lot of calmer passages that just wobble along, accompanied by at times oriental sounds and other experimental parts, which all together do not have any positive effect, but are just thrown together.
A pity, I think that some passages show potential that they never elaborate on, a horribly mediocre release that tires you out instead of lifting your spirit and does not have any real highlights.
(Online January 19, 2011)