Sepultura
Morbid Visions


3.5
great

Review

by Pedro B. USER (303 Reviews)
December 9th, 2005 | 118 replies | 13,679 views


Release Date: 1986 | Tracklist


6 of 6 thought this review was well written

�The only really good thing to come out of that album was Troops Of Doom.�
As true as Max Cavalera�s words may ring, the fact is, Troops was probably one of the weakest tracks to come out of Sepultura�s now-legendary debut, Morbid Visions.�

Released in 1986, Visions (coupled here with 1985 demo Bestial Devastation) was the first step in one of metal�s most respected careers. However, back in the day, Sepultura had little or nothing to do with the band we know today. They played a fast, brutal brand of extreme metal that would later become known as thrash/death metal. Following in the footsteps of bands such as Possessed, Celtic Frost or Death, Sepultura ushered in the second wave of that movement, right from their native town of Belo Horizonte, in the heart of Brazil.

Now, being Brazilian, Sepultura didn�t have access to the likes of Morrisound Studios, so they ended up recording both these works in cheapish Belo Horizonte studios, with people who barely knew what they were doing. That seems befitting, since the band barely knew what they were doing themselves.��We were all excited because that was the first time we were walking in a studio� recalls Igor Cavalera. �I wasn�t even used to playing in a real drum set � mine was totally ***ed up, really primitive. I didn�t even use my feet on the song Antichrist!�

As if that wasn�t enough to attest of the band�s amateurship, check out one of Max�s own recollections: �
Quote:
Probably the best thing about that album is that it�s out of tune! In a lot of songs, my guitar is out of tune with Jairo�s. We simply forgot to tune the guitars every day. We just used the guitars the way they were set up in the studio. We didn�t even have a tuner!


So you get the drift - this is an underproduced, painfully amateurish romp. Yet Sepultura were never ones to deny their origins: rather than pretend that album never existed (the way Tom G.Warrior acts about Hellhammer) or dismissing it as just pure crap, Sepultura embrace it. They know just what it was � their first tentative step towards a musical career. As flawed as it may have been, it was real, and should not be forgotten.�

Back then , Sepultura had a slightly different formation. Andreas Kisser had not yet entered the picture, and the band�s lead guitarist was one Jairo T, now a respected musician in Brazil. Also, the entire band used pseudonyms, fully representative of their youth and na�vet�. Max Cavalera was Max Possessed, Jairo was Tormentor, bassist Paulo Jr. was Destructor and Max�s brother Igor was Igor Skull Crusher. Their song titles and topics were also quite typical and admittedly influenced by the likes of Death or Celtic Frost.��Everything about that album was a ripoff of the bands we liked� Max admits openly. �Even the song topics. Morbid Visions was heavily inspired by Morbid Tales, by Celtic Frost, for example. We didn�t really know any English, so the song lyrics were pretty much taken out of a dictionary I used to have�, he adds, humorously.�

So now you�re thinking: this album is derivative, out of tune, technically poor and has hardly any production at all. It must suck big time, right?� Wrong. Morbid Visions is actually quite a pleasant listen, once you get past the tinny guitars and hollowed-out vocals. The songs are fast, thrashy, and serve as a sort of embryo to what the band would later present in albums such as Beneath The Remains. Yet, they aren�t made up of noise for noise�s sake, and indeed present something increasingly rare in extreme metal: choruses.�

Of course, the entire album is heavily laden with nods to other, more established bands: apart from the title track, the choruses to both Funeral Rites and Crucifixion bring back memories of early Death, while Troops Of Doom stands out for its fast Helhammer drumming pattern. Max�s vocals remain garbled throughout, and most of the time he�s just spewing out random words � murder and death make frequent appearances.�

Yet probably the best song on Morbid Visions is Show Me The Wrath. Featuring a bona-fide bridge and chorus, this song sounds like a mix of Possessed and Unseen Terror, and ranks as the top moment of the album.�

After the eight tracks that make up Morbid Visions, one is introduced to Bestial Devastation. This may seem like a queer line-up, since Bestial introduction The Curse actually appears as a ninth track, but once the demo�s title track starts playing, we fully understand why Roadrunner decided to line it up like this.

Bestial is, if possible, even rawer than Morbid Visions. In fact, at times, it�s nearly inaudible. Max sounds as though he was singing into one of those hollow toy microphones, that echo your words, and the guitars still sound tinny. However, song-wise, the demo holds a couple of gems in Antichrist (the song where Igor never used his feet!) and Necromancer, probably the high point of the demo.�

As with Morbid Visions, there are lots of funny stories associated with Bestial Devastation. Perhaps the funniest is the story of the �satanic� voice in The Curse. Says Max:�
Quote:
We had a friend come over and do the voice-over for the intro, because he could do that voice without effort, it was like he was burping in a way, and we thought it was funny. I don�t even remember his name anymore!


The package is rounded out with two bonus tracks. One is the pre-production version of Necromancer, Sepultura�s unbelievably raw first recording. That�s right. Their first recording. EVER. Completists should pee their pants right about now.

The second bonus is a live recording of [i]Antichrist] with modified lyrics, now called Anticop. As usually happens, the track sounds like an experienced band playing a song written by an unexperienced band. Therefore, the song loses much of its na�ve appeal and is frankly quite uninteresting.�

However, none of this detracts from the fact that Morbid Visions/Bestial Devastation is a very interesting little album, and a true gem for metal historicians. Its only drawbacks are the production, that can repel modern listeners, and a couple of blander moments (Empire Of The Damned, Warriors Of Death). Other than that, it is fully recommended to everyone who wants to get to know a band in its earliest formative steps.

All things considered, this album really has three ratings:�If you�re an extreme metal buff, then consider this a nearly flawless 4,75/5.�If you like your records clean and well-produced, then steer well clear because this will only be a 1/5 for you.�However, for the general metal population, the rating should be a solid 3,5/5.�


Recommended Tracks
Morbid Visions
Show Me The Wrath
Funeral Rites
Antichrist
Necromancer [demo version]



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user ratings (303)
Chart.
3.3
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Arrakakaka
December 9th 2005



685 Comments


Raw is good for me.

wikuk
December 9th 2005



1110 Comments


nice work, i'm voting.
but please get that evil blank space away.

Apathy
December 9th 2005



645 Comments


What's Sepultura's best?

taylormemer
December 9th 2005



4916 Comments


Chaos A.D. is pretty good, and Roots is also quite a good addition.

Nice review. I don't own this album yet, but it would be good to start up my Sepultura collection as I only have two albums so far.This Message Edited On 12.09.05

ReturnToRock
December 9th 2005



3448 Comments


nice work, i'm voting.
but please get that evil blank space away.

done

Red Cap Brain
December 28th 2005



174 Comments


Your review is very interesting and very objectiv. I like it.

Bazarov
December 30th 2005



55 Comments


Nice review, the out-off-tune guitars are a major turn off for me, so I'm probably not going to buy this album, though I really like Sepultura.

Mazz567 stay away from Roots, if you don't like Nu-metal korn sounding music. Get Beneath the Remains or Schizophrenia.

Pinball Map
January 27th 2006



39 Comments


and Roots is also quite a good addition.

Are you kidding? Roots is one of the worst albums I have heard

dudeinthepassinglane
February 3rd 2007



192 Comments


"What's Sepultura's best?"

Haven't heard all of em, but I just got Beneath he Remains,and so far it's the best I've hea. I also kno Roots, which is a LOT slower - it's good, but I like speed metal. Also Against, w Derrick Green, their first w/o Max, is really fucking good, and kicks the shit outta Soulfly's debut. Personally I like Green better, though I am defintely in the minority on that one. He's got a more powerful and deep vocal. Against is set up very wll as an album, w dips and peaks; you don't get tired of listening the whole way through.

dudeinthepassinglane
February 3rd 2007



192 Comments


Forgot to say, this is one of the best, most-depth reviews I've seen!

FR33L0RD
February 8th 2007



1461 Comments


Amazing Review
Much appreciated

rattlehead42147
December 10th 2008



1345 Comments


I'm not so much for Morbid Visions but Bestial Devastation is the shit.

MassMetal
December 10th 2008



83 Comments


arise is my fav along with schizophrenia and chaos ad..these guys were totally sick live

ConorMichaelJoseph
May 26th 2009



1870 Comments


Sorry to bump this old review but I have to say that the awfulness of the production kind of adds to these two recordings. Not bad but certainly not a touch on what was to come

grungethrash91
September 23rd 2010



97 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

While most people consider Beneath The Remains, Arise, or Roots to be the best from sepultura, I would consider Morbid Visions to be my favorite release from them. I love the sheer speed and agression the album posseses, which easily surpasses laster albums. I think Morbid Visions is highly underappreciated.

SylentEcho
January 28th 2011



1570 Comments


"What's Sepultura's best?"

I'd say Arise, then Chaos A.D.

qwe3
January 28th 2011



21355 Comments


Some interesting riffs, but jeez this is neither Metal nor Hardcore which makes it Metalcore which in turn makes it sound really gay. Whoever gives this a high rating has a really bad ear for not only Metal, but music in general.

This band (and many bands like this) clearly don't know how to structure their songs or know which riff flows into which one and there is no concept of soloing. So why even attempt to play something that sounds like Metal and is this shabby? I'm not denying that some riffs are catchy and the drumming is pretty tight, but the songs are just poorly made and the vocalist sounds like a peacock getting it's neck broken.

Mordecai.
January 28th 2011



8277 Comments


this is neither Metal nor Hardcore which makes it Metalcore which in turn makes it sound really gay.

really gay

SylentEcho
January 28th 2011



1570 Comments


Some interesting riffs, but jeez this is neither Metal nor Hardcore which makes it Metalcore which in turn makes it sound really gay. Whoever gives this a high rating has a really bad ear for not only Metal, but music in general.

This band (and many bands like this) clearly don't know how to structure their songs or know which riff flows into which one and there is no concept of soloing. So why even attempt to play something that sounds like Metal and is this shabby? I'm not denying that some riffs are catchy and the drumming is pretty tight, but the songs are just poorly made and the vocalist sounds like a peacock getting it's neck broken.
Wow, that sounds exactly like something I would say.

qwe3
January 28th 2011



21355 Comments



Some interesting riffs, but jeez this is neither Metal nor Hardcore which makes it Metalcore which in turn makes it sound really gay. Whoever gives this a high rating has a really bad ear for not only Metal, but music in general.

This band (and many bands like this) clearly don't know how to structure their songs or know which riff flows into which one and there is no concept of soloing. So why even attempt to play something that sounds like Metal and is this shabby? I'm not denying that some riffs are catchy and the drumming is pretty tight, but the songs are just poorly made and the vocalist sounds like a peacock getting it's neck broken.




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