Sound — 9
Roots is the seventh Sepultura's release and also the last with guitarist/vocalist Max Cavalera. Released in 1996, it is a continuation of Chaos AD (1993), that was the first Sepultura's album on which metal is mixed with tribal music. In all the songs we can hear tribal instruments (percussions for example), like in "Ratamahatta", surely the most rock'n'roll song of the band ever or"Ambush". There also two instrumental songs, "Jasco" (a beautiful acoustic guitar solo) and "Itsari" (recorded with the Xavantes tribe). The rest of the songs are quite low ("Roots Bloody Roots", "Attitude"), except for "Dictatorshit" and "Born Stubborn' but remain very violent.
Lyrics — 8
Roots' lyrics are neither religious nor political-involved, except for "Dictatorshit" (originally, the word "dictatorship" means a South American dictature). These lyrics are more abstract and speak for example of city dangers, like on "Breed Apart". Max Cavalera screams like on Chaos AD, and has a voice a bit influenced by death metal. Korn's singer Jonathan Davis appears on "Lookaway", and Ramazzotti sings a few verses on the "Roost Bloody Roots" anthem.
Overall Impression — 9
Finally, this album is both low and violent, and Sepultura is very influenced by tribal music. They started to mix metal with tribal sounds on the Chaos AD album ("Kaiowas") and continued with Against, released in 1998 ("Reza"), recorded with singer Derrick Green. Roots' most impressive songs are surely "Roots Bloody Roots", the best-known song of the band, "Attitude" and "Ratamahatta". In conclusion, if you enjoy Sepultura and don't have this album you're a loser!