Published Aug 09, 2011While there are undoubtedly a great deal of you who consider yourselves experts on groove-laced Brazilian thrash metal stars Sepultura, we have decided to bring the rest of you up to speed with our recent in-depth Timeline piece. The lengthy article can be read in its entirety here, and to see what's up for grabs, we've offered five highlights.
Five Noteworthy Facts You May Not Know about Sepultura:
1. Sepultura took their early cues from Venom, Kreator, Exodus and Motörhead.
Sepultura are formed in Belo Horizonte, Brazil by brothers Max and Igor Cavalera, both teenagers. The two had grown up listening to classic rock staples, but once they are introduced to the ultra-raw underground metal of Venom, the high-speed thrash of bands like Kreator and Exodus, the two decide that's what they want to play... The band's name (Portuguese for "Grave"), is suggested by Max after he translates the lyrics to Motörhead's "Dancing on your Grave." The band play their first show on December 4.
2. Guitarist Andreas Kisser started as Max Cavalera's guitar tech.
Guitarist Guedes is replaced by Andreas Kisser, who had briefly been Max's guitar tech; Kisser remains with the band to this day. "I had a band at the same time in Sao Paulo that was playing covers," says Kisser now. "That was a great school for me, to play Whitesnake, Twisted Sister, Venom, Exodus and Metallica. Around '86 I started to do some original stuff, influenced by Kreator and all that new German thrash -- Destruction, Sodom. I had friends in my band but they weren't serious about it. When I met the Sepultura guys, I saw they really wanted to do it; they were ready."
3. Sepultura had a run-in with a Pearl Jam-obsessed Epic exec.
Sepultura try to get to the level by signing with Epic Records (which Kisser will later describe as being a "very bad experience" and a "disaster" to Metal Hammer). "The guy that signed us came to visit us in the studio," Max will tell Metal Hammer in 1996. "He turned out to be this huge asshole that didn't understand our music at all. He was the guy that had discovered Pearl Jam and he couldn't stop talking about that. We didn't care about his fancy stories. We wanted someone that was interested in us, not Pearl Jam."
4. Sepultura's Under a Pale Grey Sky live album was released against their wishes.
Roadrunner drops the band; Sepultura are happy to leave. The label then releases Under a Pale Grey Sky, a recording of Max's last show with the band, despite Sepultura not wanting them to. "Why put something out that is not worth remembering?" says Kisser. "The last show with Max was a big fight and we had to fire our manager that night, and Max was not even in the meeting… there was tension all over the place. Why represent such a great era -- with Roots, a great album, and great touring -- with that show? Just because it was recorded? No respect at all. Not to the band, not to the fans. The least they could do was respect the wishes of the group. We didn't want to put it out; this is very personal. There are a lot of fans, and as a sign of respect, we didn't want to put this out. But we didn't have much control, and they put it out. So it's out."
5. Sepultura looked back on their own history with this year's Kairos.
The album is inspired by, well, Sepultura, and is a loose concept album based around time and the band's own history. "Kairos is the consequence of everything we just talked about," Kisser says. "The very theme of the album is our history, everything we passed through, the experiences we had on stage, the experiences with managers, the press, friends, fans, family… it's great. It just came that way. Playing all of Arise, doing old songs, jamming everywhere, it brought back a lot of old feelings. There's a lot of the old Sepultura, but it's very new, it's very us now. You got Jean on the drums, you fuse Derrick's style and everything, plus me and Paulo playing together forever. It was a great time to do an album. It was perfect."