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Enslaved
Enslaved
8th album by Soulfly
Released on JPN: March 7, 2012
GER: March 9, 2012
EU & AUS: March 12, 2012
ROTW: March 13, 2012
Record label Roadrunner
Produced by Zeuss, Max Cavalera
Number of tracks Standard edition: 11
Deluxe edition: 14
Japanese edition: 14
Duration Standard edition: 53:30
Deluxe edition: 65:39
Japanese edition: 64:51
Genre(s) Death metal, thrash metal, groove metal
Singles 1
Previous album
Omen
Next album
Savages
Deluxe edition cover
Enslaved zoomed in

Enslaved is the eighth Soulfly album, released in 2012. The album was recorded in fall 2011 in Phoenix, AZ (which is Soulfly's hometown) and the release includes deluxe and Japanese editions each containing three additional tracks. The theme of this album centers on slavery, which is how this album was titled.

Notable songs on this album are "World Scum" (its only single of the album) "Revengeance", "Plata O Plomo", "Redemption of Man by God", "American Steel", and "Gladiator".

Background Edit

Lineup Edit

This album sees two new members in the lineup — Tony Campos, who replaced Bobby Burns on bass, and David Kinkade, who replaced Joe Nunez on drums and percussion. The two returning members are guitarist Marc Rizzo and lead vocalist Max Cavalera. Cavalera also plays rhythm guitar on all but one track, as well as sitar on few tracks and berimbau on the bonus track "Slave". Rizzo plays lead guitar on every track, plus flamenco guitar on one track. Bassist Campos also co-sings with Cavalera in the track "Plata O Plomo".

Production Edit

The songs that make up this album were recorded from September till November 2011 in Tallcat Studios in Phoenix, Arizona. However, Travis Ryan's vocals on "World Scum" was recorded in Frick'in Studios in San Marcos, California after he was called in to replace Adam Warren of Oceano. The songs were then mixed and mastered at Planet-Z Recordings in Hadley, Massachusetts. Zeuss and Max Cavalera produced this album, the first time Zeuss involved in production of a Soulfly album since their second album Primitive.

Release Edit

On March 7, 2012 Japan is the first country to see the release of Enslaved. Europe and Australia would follow on March 12 (except it was released in Germany on March 9), and the rest of the world, such as Americas, on March 13, 2012. It is the last Soulfly album to be released through Roadrunner Records before signing with Nuclear Blast. The release also includes deluxe edition and Japanese edition, both containing three additional tracks.

Charts Edit

According to Blabbermouth.net, 5,900 copies of Enslaved were sold during the first week of its release in the US, reaching number 82 on the Billboard 200 chart. North of the border, the album debuted at number 83 on the Canadian Albums Chart, so far the only Soulfly album to be charted on the Canadian Chart. The lowest peak of any chart was #182 on Japan Top 250 chart. The country with the most weeks on chart was Belgium at 4 weeks. Six out of ten charted countries were on their chart for just one week, including US Billboard.

Chart Weeks Peak
Australia Top 100
1
#40
Austria Top 75
2
#32
Belgium Ultratop 200
4
#59
Canada Top 100
1
#83
Dutch Top 100
2
#66
France Top 150
1
#98
Germany Top 100
1
#38
Japan Top 250
1
#182
Swiss Top 100
2
#36
US Billboard 200
1
#82

Title and cover art Edit

While Max was writing lyrics, he proposed the album title to fit the theme of the lyrics he was writing and he came up with Enslaved, though he was thinking of Slave, but the title would've of been too plain as according to Max.

The album art created by Marcelo Vasco shows several chains holding a stone with spiked crate sitting in its handle. The purple background is just a chosen color for it. The deluxe edition cover is a zoomed in version of the regular.

Music and lyrics Edit

Drummer David Kinkade described Enslaved as "Arise on crack" musically. The music on this album is predominantly groove metal and thrash metal, typifying heavy sounds of Soulfly. The album also features more death metal than their previous releases, making Enslaved the heaviest Soulfly album at the time of release. The single "World Scum" and "Treachery" even contain touches of black metal in it. Like the last album Omen, this album lacks the use of tribal instruments, though they're prominently utilized in the bonus track "Slave".

The main theme of this album is slavery, hence the album title Enslaved. Other topics include the impending apocalypse, tyranny, injustice, and societal barbarism. The idea for slavery theme came from the debut album, where several songs are about Zumbi, which was a slave in Brazil. In 1998 when the first Soulfly record came out, Max Cavalera spoke to his wife Gloria, "One day, I'm gonna do a record that deals with slavery." It came to pass 14 years later with this concept album.

All those lyrics were inspired by history-themed movies Cavalera likes to watch, such as Ben-Hur, Lawrence of Arabia, and Doctor Zhivago.

Songs Edit

"World Scum" is the album's only single released on January 25, 2012 with the accompanying music video released on February 16. The song features Travis Ryan of Cattle Decapitation. "Gladiator", which was released for download a few days before the album was released, is a melodic song about Roman gladiators.

"American Steel" is a tribute song of Max Cavalera for his love of heavy metal in America, telling story of inspirations leading up to his legendary career, including heavy metal founders such as Van Halen and Metallica. "Redemption of Man by God" features Dez Fafara of Coal Chamber and DevilDriver.

"Plata O Plomo" comprises the lyrics both in Spanish (sung by bassist Tony Campos) and Portuguese (sung by Cavalera) as it talks about the drug lord Pablo Escobar. The song's title is a slang term used by some drug dealers and is Spanish for "Silver or Lead".

"Revengeance" features three Max Cavalera's sons, Richie (on vocals), Igor (on vocals and guitar), and Zyon (on drums). The song is written about the murder of Max's stepson Dana Wells, though he actually died in a car crash.

The deluxe and Japanese editions of Enslaved each contain three additional tracks, both containing the tracks "Slave" and "Soulfly VIII". The track "Bastard" is only included on the deluxe edition, while the live version of "Downstroy" (a track of 3) is exclusive to the Japanese edition. "Slave" references the slave master Zumbi. The instrumental "Soulfly VIII" is the only Soulfly song to feature a violin. Enslaved is the first Soulfly album to not include the Soulfly-titled song on the standard album edition.

Durations Edit

The regular edition of the album lasts 53½ minutes while the deluxe edition lasts slightly over 12 minutes longer, and Japanese edition lasts 11⅓ minutes longer. The longest track on the album is "Chains" lasting 7¼ minutes, while the shortest is the intro track "Resistance" lasting just under two minutes.

Tracklist Edit

  1. "Resistance" – 1:53
  2. "World Scum" (alt. titled "Blood Scum") (released as single) (feat. Travis Ryan) – 5:19
  3. "Intervention" – 3:55
  4. "Gladiator" (alt. titled "Hail Caesar") – 4:58
  5. "Legions" – 4:17
  6. "American Steel" – 4:13
  7. "Redemption of Man by God" ("ROMBG"; alt. titled "Blood Redemption") (feat. Dez Fafara) – 5:15
  8. "Treachery" – 5:47
  9. "Plata O Plomo" (Spanish for "Silver or Lead") – 4:51
  10. "Chains" – 7:16
  11. "Revengeance" (feat. Richie Cavalera, Igor Cavalera Jr. and Zyon Cavalera) – 5:41
Deluxe edition bonus tracks
  1. "Slave" (quasi-title track) – 3:50
  2. "Bastard" – 3:54
  3. "Soulfly VIII" (instrumental; feat. Tim Sadow) – 4:23
Japanese edition bonus tracks
  1. "Slave" (quasi-title track) – 3:50
  2. "Soulfly VIII" (instrumental; feat. Tim Sadow) – 4:23
  3. "Downstroy" (live) – 3:07

Tentative tracklist Edit

The differences between tentative tracklist from December 6, 2011 and finalized tracklist above is too insignificant to list all of the tentative tracks unlike on some other album pages. The only difference is that "Revengeance" and "Chains" were swapped with the latter tentatively the final standard track.

Reviews Edit

Enslaved was mixly received by critics with the aggregate score of 56% by Metacritic.

  • AEaston of #AltSounds (63%) – "Enslaved is a standard, run of the mill death-thrash-groove metal album, chock-a-block full of ten tonne riffs that crush you into two dimensions. This could easily been the latest Cavalera Conspiracy album."
  • Jason Strange of The AU Review (7/10) – "The album is a real return to form for Cavalera. The tracks are brutal but have texture and depth and the theme of slavery works well throughout the tracks."
  • Sebastian of biotechpunk – "Soulfly has delivered the right music for 2012."
  • CackBlabbath.com – "Full of bile and venom" and has "uncanny ear for melody wrapped in razor wire and delivered with a relentless pummelling to the head."
  • Greg Pratt of Exclaim! (8/10) – "This album is the band's best yet, as well as the least caught up in "look at this!" eccentricities, adding up to a solid outing, one that never quite gets to death metal, even with blast beats littered throughout. Instead, it's just huge, thick, thrashed-out, aggro-dude metal, but 20 percent less neon-dread content."
  • Raymond of [e]xpositio – "Enslaved is a poignant celebration of Max Cavalera’s musical vision and his longevity."
  • Kingcrimsonprog of KingcrimsonBlog – "Overall, Enslaved is a strong, well written and immaculately produced album by a confident and mature band. The direction is dark, precise and heavy modern metal music with a lot of shredding, a lot of speed and no messing around."
  • Lords of Metal (85/100) – "Most intense, violent and most explosive album Soulfly has unleashed on humanity."
  • Sam Radojcin of Loud Magazine – "After 15 years of trying different styles and sounds, they have finally found their feet with a fast, hard and brutal approach that works."
  • Colin McNamara of The Metal Forge – "Soulfly is in a league of its own after moving away from the more general metal sounding groups like Cavalera Conspiracy and Sepultura, and more culturally charged than ever while still belting out their heavier licks."
  • Metal as Fuck – "Enslaved is the most vibrant piece of noisy rock n’ roll that Max Cavalera has been involved in this century."
  • METALITY.NET (8/10) – This album showcases the return of Sepultura vibes: "Soulfly have clearly gone "back to the primitive", and it’s worked!"
  • Alex "Ve" of Metallized.it (68/100) – "Enslaved is a pulled and violent album that in some cases recalls the sound of old school, and at the same time resembling, but not wholly, nu metal."
  • Sascha Dörr of METALNEWS.DE (5/7) – "Max offers a brutality with the greatest success of songwriting. The world music and sitar excerpts fit well into these pieces."
  • Anwar Rizk of Metal Obsession (7/10) – "Enslaved sees Soulfly speed up things quite a bit with the inclusion of Kinkade and Campos who turn everything they touch to gold on this album."
  • Metalorecenzje (9/10) – "Cavalera is back! The lyrics are tailored to the composition, and Cavalera put a lot of heart to it."
  • Reggie of A Metal State of Mind – "Enslaved has balls!" and he likes this album because of "predictability" that everyone else complain about.
  • Chris Colgan of PopMatters (7/10) – "Every song fits into the structure and tone to create a memorable record packed with outstanding content."
  • Q (2/5) – "World music elements are getting stale."
  • Simon Crampton of ThisIsNotAScene (8/10) – "Enslaved is an important record in the Soulfly legacy, as it proves just how vital and fresh the band can sound when all the elements are lined up correctly, and proves that Max Cavalera still has a few tricks up his sleeve."

Personnel Edit

Performers

Band members

Guest/session musicians

Songwriters
Audio engineers
Supervisors
  • Zeussproduction
  • Max Cavalera – co-production
  • Gloria Cavalera – management
  • Oasis Management – management
  • Christina Stojanovic – assistant management
  • Bryan Roberts – assistant management
  • Cliff Roman – assistant management
  • Monte ConnerA&R
Cover artworkers
  • Marcelo Vasco – cover art
  • Kevin Estrada – photography
  • Leo Zulueta – Soulfly logo
Booking agents
  • Justin Hirschman – booking
  • Rod MacSween – booking
  • Steve Zapp – booking

Album navigation Edit

Soulfly

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Primitive

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3

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Prophecy

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Dark Ages

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Conquer

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Omen

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Enslaved

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Savages

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Archangel

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