"Max Cavalera is Responsible for Black Metal."
from Beneath the Remains (1989)
Sepultura has enjoyed differing levels of success throughout their career. Beneath the Remains, Arise, Chaos A.D. and Roots were all very successful metal albums. However, "mainstream" recognition for Max Cavalera came with the "nu-metal" movement of the late 90's/early '00's, and subsequently Soulfly.
Soulfly - "Back to the Primitive" (2000)
So this is where you may be asking yourself, "how the hell did a thrash-metal-turned-dreadlocked-hippy-metal-dork create the entire Norweigan black metal scene?"
The answer is so simple its maddening.
In 1984, Max and Igor Cavalera formed Sepultura in Brazil. Wagner Lamounier was their first vocalist. Following conflicts with Max, Lamounier left Sepultura and in 1985 formed his own Brazilian death metal band, Sarcofago.
Sarcofago - I.N.R.I. (1987)
Sarcofago were never as popular as Sepultura or Soulfly, but one thing that gained them "notoriety" was that they were one of Euronymous' favorite bands. Euronymous was of course the murdered guitarist of MayheM and the guy who pretty much started that whole black metal thing in Norway. You know, the church burnings, murders, suicides, "corpsepaint," more-evil-than-death-metal stuff? Very entertaining.
"Mother North" (1996)
Its been said in interviews that Euronymous was a big fan of Sarcofago. He especially liked the logo, clothes and make-up. You can definitely see the influence taken from Sarcofago that was put into the black metal scene:
Sarcofago, circa 1986
MayheM, circa 1990
If Max Cavalera got along with Wagner Lamounier, then Lamounier wouldn't have left Sepultura to form Sarcofago. If Sarcofago never formed, then Euronymous (of MayheM) wouldn't have had a group of minorities on the other side of the planet to rip off. If Euronymous never stole Sarcofago's look, then his silly little group of bored satanic rich kids probably wouldn't have had anything to make them stand out in the metal scene (if you ignore the church burnings, murders and such). And thus...we wouldn't have black metal as we know it today.
So there you have it.
Max Cavalera is responsible for black metal.
Tell all your friends.
"The Freezing Moon" (1990)
"Stronger Than Hate" (1989)