Revisited: SEPULTURA’s “The Mediator Between Head And Hands Must Be The Heart”

Originally written for Valkyrian Music.

I haven’t followed SEPULTURA very closely in a long while (in fact, I’ve never done it “closely”, but I paid some attention between “Beneath The Remains” and “Roots”), but I’ve heard enough to be able to say that their 13th studio album, despite its annoying long title, is their best in years.

The fastest song, old school thrash metal style, is the opening one, “Trauma Of War”, matching its belligerent title. It’s probably also the only one that’s fast through and through, and I’m not complaining – the bass line and tribal drumming that cut that speed in “Manipulation Of Tragedy” and “The Bliss Of Ignorants” make these songs pretty outstanding.

Even though there’s this song called “Impending Doom”, the doom-ish track is “Grief”, a dark and melancholic song where Derrick Green sings with a clean and very depressive tone (which was frankly a surprise, but a good one). “Impending Doom” is a combination of thrash, death and some melody – which in truth can be said of the majority of the album.

Must mention the last track, a cover of Brazilian act Chico SCIENCE & NAÇÃO ZUMBI’s “Da Lama Ao Caos” (from mud to chaos), sung by Andreas Kisser (as Derrick can’t speak Portuguese, I assume). Like “Ratamahatta” all those years ago, you’ll see a very Brazilian-vibe turn to metal and that’s always interesting, to say the least.

All in all, the groove is thicker, the riffing is richer, the balance between death and thrash tempos is more even… The only thing I personally would prefer is if they’d toned down the vocal effects a bit. Especially in “The Vatican” and “The Age Of The Atheist”, the echoes messing the words quite noisily. Luckily, it doesn’t ruin the greatness of either of these tracks.

Inspired in Fritz Lang’s 1927 movie “Metropolis”, mastermind Kisser says that “The Mediator Between Head And Hands Must Be The Heart” is not a concept album, the lyrics simply expressing what they see today, their music reflecting the feeling of living in daily chaos. Heavy stuff indeed.

Label: Nuclear Blast

Producer: Ross Robinson

Track list:

  1. Trauma Of War
  2. The Vatican
  3. Impending Doom
  4. Manipulation Of Tragedy
  5. Tsunami
  6. The Bliss Of Ignorants
  7. Grief
  8. The Age Of The Atheist
  9. Obsessed
  10. Da Lama Ao Caos

About Pieni

A metalhead who loves photography and her friends.
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