SOULFLY is putting the finishing touches on its new album for a tentative summer release via Nuclear Blast. The follow-up to 2015's "Archangel" is being recorded with producer Josh Wilbur, who has previously worked with LAMB OF GOD, GOJIRA and ALL THAT REMAINS, among others.
Although Max has said in some of his recent interviews that the next SOULFLY album would be "a return to some of the tribal sounds" of the band's early material, he told Jack Antonio on Friday (February 9) that the effort "does have some stuff like that, but the record actually ended up taking a different route when we were in the studio. Some of the stuff ended up being actually kind of political with what's going on right now," he said (hear audio below). "There's even a song about a Navajo murder that happened on a Navajo reservation — the police killed this young girl and I was really intrigued with the whole story and we made a song out of it."
Regarding the musical direction of the new SOULFLY material, Max told Jack: "The record, to me, has a little bit of a 'Chaos A.D.' [SEPULTURA] kind of feeling to it — that kind of groove, but also [with elements of] thrash. I don't know… It's kind of hard to explain, but it has the sound of right now too, which is cool. It's a contemporary record — it feels like it's done right now. I'm really stoked on it. I think it does kind of have that classic 'Chaos A.D.' feeling to it, which is great; I think it's really cool to have that kind of feeling on the record."
Cavalera was quick to point out that the new SOULFLY album is "definitely different" from "Archangel" and "Psychosis", the acclaimed fourth album from his CAVALERA CONSPIRACY project, which came out last fall.
"After doing records for so long, I know what I like, and I kind of feel what people want to hear, and that goes hand in hand," he explained. "My own favorite stuff and what people want to hear are almost similar and that makes life easier.
"I don't have pressure — the record label is not breathing down my neck to write pop songs and shit like that; I don't have that," he continued. "I can go as metal as I want, I can go as heavy as I want. The only pressure is to make something good, something that people are gonna like."
Max added that he was "a little bit surprised" at the overwhelmingly positive response to "Psychosis" considering that "I never get that good of a reception to my records — there's always some people that don't like what you do," he said. "And I think this SOULFLY record has the same kind of quality that's really cool. The songs just sound good — they're just powerful songs. And Marc Rizzo [SOULFLY guitarist] is doing some amazing guitar stuff. All the players — Zyon [Cavalera, Max's son and SOULFLY drummer] did a great job on the drums. I tried really hard to have different topics and different lyrics, so my vocals are a bit different and I'm touching different subjects on the album. So all that together makes it into something special."
According to Max, he still has to finish two songs vocally for the new SOULFLY album, and Ross Dolan from New York death metallers IMMOLATION has yet to lay down his planned guest appearance on the record.
Max and his brother Igor have spent the last year and a half celebrating the 20th anniversary of SEPULTURA's "Roots" album by performing the LP in its entirety all over the world.
Max is about to embark on the Canadian leg of the "Point Blank With Soulfly" tour, where SOULFLY is performing NAILBOMB's lone studio album, 1994's "Point Blank", in full.