Skip to main content

Max And Iggor Cavalera & Overkill at The Forum, London - live review

Brazil’s reunited brothers unearth their tribal classic

Cover art for Max And Iggor Cavalera & Overkill at The Forum, London

When New Jersey thrashers Overkill [8] played at the London Astoria in 1992, in comparison to the fantastic silliness of support band Lawnmower Deth their schtick seemed too serious and – aptly, given their name – too much. But that was then. These days Overkill are a bombastic delight, and tonight new shredfests such as Mean, Green, Killing Machine hold their own as they rub up against the likes of 1985’s calling card Rotten To The Core. The energy’s infectious; frontman Bobby ‘Blitz’ Ellsworth’s vocals can still shred glass – and that’s just his between-song chat. A suitably pissed-off version of Subhumans’ Fuck You leaves the audience supercharged and geared up for MAX AND IGGOR CAVALERA [9] – and the 20th anniversary of their world music milestone as Sepultura, Roots. The mix of brutal Brazilian ethnic metal and political epistles has toured internationally for the last 18 months, and the reaction to opener Roots Bloody Roots is electrifying. Heads bang, lyrics are bellowed, moshpit pockets break out and when Max barks, “Jump, fuckers!” the whole floor pogos. There’s huge cheers for Attitude’s berimbau break and Iggor’s pre-Canyon Jam drum solo – there’s even a frenzied Ace Of Spades cover and a smidgeon of Iron Man. The highlight, though? The percussive fiver-hander Itsári; primitive and uplifting, it speaks volumes of spiritual connection – an absolute return to roots – through Xavante tribal rhythm alone.

Embracing weird, wild and wonderful sounds, Prog's Associate Editor Jo's also a Classic Rock columnist, an avid tea-drinker and cupcake fancier.