In this brutally honest part 3 of our Discography series with SOULFLY, Max Cavalera lays down his own disappointment in the band’s third album ‘3’ and his joy in the writing and recording of the bands follow-up to that ‘Prophecy’.
If you missed yesterday’s discussion of ‘Primative’ CLICK HERE.
‘3’ for me is the weakest Soulfly album. It’s an uninspired name, I don’t know what the fuck I was thinking. The original name was ‘Downstroy’, but I think out of laziness I changed it.
Out of that album, two things came out good. ‘Seek and Strike’, which we still play live and which has a great bouncy riff, and ‘Last of the Mohicans’ (called ‘L.O.T.M.’ on the album itself). Everything else on that record is really not that good. I think it was a little bit rushed, and I wasn’t very inspired. Normally I’m very inspired to do every album, but I don’t I was fully committed.
It was a strange time, it was right after September 11, so we had a minute’s silence in the middle of the album which I thought was a cool idea. A lot of people were doing songs about September 11, I chose to do the minute of silence for the victims of the attack.
It proved to be the weakest album, and the one where everyone bailed on me. The whole band just took off and I was on my own again, which was the best thing that happened for Soulfly cos that was when I got Marc (Rizzo) on board.
‘Prophecy’ came out like a big revelation for everybody, it was a great album. I was back, my creative shit was back again, and it turned out to be a great record with songs like ‘Prophecy’, ‘Living Sacrifice’, and ‘Mars’ with the flamenco jam that Marc does every night.
I went to Serbia to record with Eyesburn, where we did one of the first metal/dub/reggae songs, called ‘Moses’. There’s a professor of music who played bagpipes and all these weird instruments which I think was really cool, and Dave Ellefson from Megadeth played bass on three tracks.
In the end, I think that’s where you can hear the first signs that we’re going heavier. There was a ‘the heavier the better’ attitude and that was the case.
We recorded that album in Mesa, Phoenix again. A better studio, but the same shitty place. We had a proper place this time – no motorhome – and the studio had a couch, TV, popcorn machine…!
We went back because it was a really good studio. The owner was a fan so he wanted us to record there, and he was a huge Beatles fan so he’d got to meet Sean Lennon when we recorded ‘3’. I think that made his life! Literally, the guy couldn’t speak when Sean Lennon was around, he was paralysed. He did us a great deal on the price too.