United Rock Nations conducted an interview with former SEPULTURA and current CAVALERA CONSPIRACY members Max Cavalera (guitar, vocals) and Igor Cavalera (drums) prior to their December 6 show at Lùsine in Istres, France as part of the "Max & Iggor Cavalera Return To Roots" tour where they were celebrating the 20th anniversary of SEPULTURA's "Roots" by playing the album in full. You can watch the entire chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On how they felt upon the 1996 release of "Roots":
Max: "Excited. Making new records, there's always an excitement. We tried real hard to make different albums all the time and 'Roots' was one of those. There was a lot of experimental stuff. We didn't know how the crowd and fans was going to react, but France was actually the first country that embraced 'Roots'. It was very well-received here. We are thankful that the French received 'Roots' so well."
On how KORN's Jonathan Davis and FAITH NO MORE's Mike Patton ended up as guests on the album:
Max: "I think Mike was Igor's idea. He was Igor's friend. We're big FAITH NO MORE fans. Igor had spent some time with Mike in Brazil, so we became friends. It was very cool."
Igor: "All the collaborations we had, it's either people that we're really good friends with or people that we're really big fans of and somehow, we end up doing something together and Mike was one of those guys where we were doing some stuff with 'Roots', his name came up and he was, like, 'Yeah, I'll come down.' And the same with all the people from KORN and all the way to DJ Lethal [HOUSE OF PAIN, LIMP BIZKIT] at the time and even [multi-instrumentalist] Carlinhos Brown, he was someone who had a name we wanted to experiment with."
On whether they thought "Roots" would have such an impact on the metal scene:
Max: "No. I mean, I think we felt the record was special. There was something mystic about it and we were onto something different. Even on the mixing when we were listening to the mixes in New York, we felt crazy, this album is crazy and different from everything we've done. But you never really know what's going to happen to the record. It's not in our control. It's in the fans hands and the public and critics and stuff like that. But I'm very happy with what happened with it. We influenced a lot of people. We made a lot of bands look into their own roots or different parts of the world. Yeah, I'm very happy we made this record and I'm very happy to be able to play it now after 21 years. That's even more crazy that we are still here, playing it, still alive and still enjoying it and still having fun with it. It's great."
On whether there's anything they would go back and change about "Roots":
Max: "Nothing. [Laughs]"
Igor: "It's a very difficult [thing to do]. Also, if we would go back and change [something], I don't think it would work because anything we do, if we don't put an end to it, we just can keep going. For example, when we write an album, we have to put the deadline on ourselves to be, like, 'This is done.' Then we can move forward. 'Roots' is the same thing. An album like 'Roots', maybe on our earlier albums when we were in Brazil with the very difficult ways of recording our music, maybe I would love to have had the first two records, the ['Bestial Devastation'] EP and 'Morbid Visions' done in a better way. Even though they are special the way they are, I think they don't do justice to the way we were playing those songs live at the time. I think they [could] sound much better, but 'Roots', I wouldn't mess with it."
On whether CAVALERA CONSPIRACY's new "Psychosis" studio album was inspired by "Roots" and metal of the '90s:
Max: "I think it has the spirit of that era. We were trying to go for it, but with the kind of the sound of right now of noise, like stuff we listen to right now. It's a combination of the past and present."
Igor: "I think it's a lot faster of an album itself. 'Roots' is a slower record, which I love also, but I think the fact that we did this 'Roots' tour, it kind of pushed us to do something even more different with 'Psychosis'. In that sense, I think 'Roots' was very positive, even for that. It pushed me and Max to go a little faster, like picking up the riffs and the beats, we're all pushing each other to go a little more than what we do here. In that sense, I think it's very different than 'Roots', but somehow, it does have some of the '90s stuff that we still love to this day."
Max: "I like it a lot. I think there's some really cool stuff on it. One of my favorite things on 'Psychosis' is the title track, the instrumental. We started with Igor's recording in Uganda, Africa, and that really goes back to 'Roots', actually. That song could have been on 'Roots', easily. I think it's really cool because it's kind of like the first kind of tribal prog rock song ever done. [Laughs] That and 'Hellfire', is one of my favorites because it has Justin [Broadrick] from GODFLESH. It has that very heavy industrial vibe to it."
Igor: "The cool thing about 'Hellfire', I think it's almost like a tribute to GODFLESH. I remember when we wrote the song, once we knew that he was involved, we pushed it even a little further to have that [GODFLESH] 'Streetcleaner' kind of vibe to it. Even Justin came up to me later and said 'Man, I haven't sung like this since 'Streetcleaner'. So we made him somehow go back to those times without asking. Like Max said, those two songs out of the all the crazy stuff that we did, they're so special in different ways. It's really cool."
Max: "It makes the record deep. It's not just a return to thrash, death metal record. There's more to it. The more people listen to it, we even go back as far as 'Morbid Visions' with a track like 'Judas Pariah' because it has crazy drumming and a very black metal riff. It was cool. It was a good record to make. It was done in the right way with the right people. Arthur [Rizk] was a great producer. Joel Grind from TOXIC HOLOCAUST mastered it. It was a great team."
Igor: "Also, it was good times. Even though I was sick at the time — I got really sick when I was recording, but still, I pushed myself to the limit. It was great to have Max and Arthur, the producer, push me to do more and do different stuff. I was really pleased when I came home. I was, like, 'Wow.' I was relieved that is the way it came out."
CAVALERA CONSPIRACY's fourth album, "Psychosis", was released on November 17 via Napalm Records.