With a recording and touring schedule that Max Cavalera has had between his two bands SOULFLY and CAVALERA CONSPIRACY, it was a rather shocking that a sophomore album from the latter came this quickly. When the iron’s hot though, might as well strike it as many times as possible and thusly we end up with “Blunt Force Trauma."
Although the first album was a nice throw back for the Cavalera brothers to their Thrashy days of old, the second album is…well; it’s pretty much the same. The band obviously has no qualms with the style they are playing and “Blunt Force Trauma” is just a slight more forceful and trimmed version. As if they needed to trim away more of the fluff from the first album to begin with (rolls eyes).
The Cavalera brothers (with Max on guitars/vocals and Igor on the drums) pummel their way through fast and furious tracks of Hardcore energy and Metal proficiency. The drums are rattled with double bass attacks and rapid snare counts while the guitar riffs and bass promptly batter the listener with down tuned roars of catchy rhythms. Marc Rizzo (whom also is featured as lead guitar in SOULFLY) is allowed to a bit of his now patented shred and wails on the strings, which ideally pair with the riffs nicely. Sometimes Rizzo isn’t used to his maximum potential here (or even as well as on the first album) to capture the chaotic Thrash sound, but he is a nice added layer that works. And of course, we have the now all familiar Max scream/shout roars to top off the record.
“Blunt Force Trauma” is exactly what one wants from a follow up to a great debut. It’s more of the same thing that made the first record worth listening to, but it’s also different enough (in this case, slightly shorter and punchier tracks with less melody) to make it stand out on its own. The sophomore effort isn’t quite as good as its predecessor, but it’s still a romp of an album.
Songs to check out: “Killing Inside," “I Speak Hate," “Blunt Force Trauma."
(Online July 5, 2011)