Soulfly definitely raises the hair up of several über/true metal puritans, including the Editor-in-Chief of Metal-Rules.com, EvilG, who has an utter dislike of the band from the bottom of his heart. Even though not everyone approves of the band’s direction for one reason or another, Max Cavalera has done plenty of ass-kicking, killer tunes during his Soulfly career. Cavalera is known for adoring Finland because of the Finnish hardcore roots, which has influenced his metal ambitions and he has always enjoyed a strong and even fanatical following since the heyday of Sepultura. It was no surprise to see the whole Nosturi club packed by hundreds of fans on this Saturday night. Before Soulfly was allowed to bring the tribal chaos, the opening band, Incite, had been recruited to warm up the audience to destroy the place.
Incite, hailing from Arizona, is centred around the personality of frontman Richie Cavalera. Incite operates in the mid-field of metalcore-meets-old school thrash-sounding riffs. Richie’s stage presence is slightly reminiscent of a young Phil Anselmo with his grim-looking face similar to the former Pantera frontman. However, Richie turned out to be a vital and energic frontman, walking around the stage and encouraging the kids to go crazy. The band’s musical style somehow sunk into the mass of that kind of -core-ish approach heard before and nothing new was delivered. However, it is certain Incite will reach bigger status as a result of their hard-working and uncompromising attitude.
When the curtains were pulled aside and “Blood Fire War Hate” roared out of the monitors, Max showed up to the stage and the whole floor area went totally berserk. Young kids formed one hell of a "jump da fuck up" maelstrom. Max was obviously thrilled about the mass chaos and mayhem in front of him, as he stared at the kids, demanding and encouraging them to sing. The set was suddenly followed by “Troops Of Doom”, which was quite unexpected so early in the gig. The floor was literally burning up with kids in the pit smashing each other. Another Sepultura classic was “Refuse/Resist”, but kind of odd that “Roots, Bloody Roots” had been dropped from the set, even though it appeared on the planned setlist. The nearly 90-minute set of pure blasting metal by the four-piece offered a great deal of killer Soulfly cuts from the first release up until the latest one with such favorites as “Seek ‘n’ Strike," "Back To The Primitive," "Eye For An Eye" and "Fall Of The Sychophants”. Hearing the people sing the lyrics of "Refuse/Resist" by heart sounded absolutely mindblowing and outstanding.
Even though the guitar with one less string was hanging around his neck, Max hardly touched the instrument. Instead, he was so extremely passionate to whip the audience into singing along, arranging circle pits and a wall of death. Max’s dreadlocks, which had got an entire new style, reminded us of Jar Jar Binks out of Star Wars, which was truly hilarious. Occasionally, the guitar was left behind the stage and Max just concentrated on doing the vocals, even diving into the audience. One fan was asked to get on stage to do the drumming performance with the whole band. There was a huge set of water bottles placed nearby the drumkit, which all were thrown to the audience.
Guitarist Marc Rizzo is truly a driving force in Soulfly and brought aggressive vibes to the guitar playing. His trademark karate spinkicks trademarks were there, too. Somehow the whole gig left a bit of a weird feeling because of Max’s eccentric manners on the stage and Marc Rizzo handling most of the guitar playing.
Soulfly is either hated or liked, but sounded raw and brutal, despite a few peaceful acoustic guitar parts. If this is not metal, what does Soulfly stand for nowadays ?!