It is hard to get better than this album. It's pure guts and spirit.
I had a copy of Morbid Visions on the infamous Shark records release, complete with the "Carmina Burana" intro, but I'd had trouble hunting down a clean copy of Bestial Devastation. I found out that Roadrunner had re-released these, at the apex of Sepultura's popularity after Beneath the Remains, on a rainy night in Southern California. I'd walked a few miles down the highway and wandered into the record store I almost never went to, a mainstream one, by the shopping center. As it turned out, this was a good move, since they never got death metal customers and so would sell it for pennies. For $7.95 I walked away with a used copy of this album, took it home and put it on the stereo. I never stopped listening to it, although I've taken breaks to hear other albums, get some degrees, have a few jobs and a family.
This album is death metal perfection. It takes what made Slayer great, which is love of the expressive riff. Not just the cool riff, or the groovy riff, but a riff that sounds like the song topic. These songs are basically a chord progression with chromatic riffs built around each of its points, like an insane Qabbalah of occult tones. The riffs sound like the things they describe. Knitted together, each riff only makes sense after you've heard the next one and seen where the story goes. The result is an exuberant chaos yet the tightest loops you can imagine, everything fitting together without an ounce of fat. Underneath this, racing battledrums are coordinated like a small army of horsemen; above it, a gruff voice howls out a monotonic rhythm that makes each song catchy and frees up the guitars to raise hell. Together, the two albums form a continuous entity, although it has two voices. The first sounds more like guitarist/vocalist Wagner Antichrist's previous band, Sarcofago. The second sounds more like early Slayer, Possessed and Bathory, but with greater density of riff complexity. The result is pure metal beauty.
Like many great things, "this album is not for everyone." Musical purists will complain about the lack of scales or the haphazard use of dissonance in jumbled almost pure-noise solos. People from the newer metal genres will be unable to tap into the pure animal spirit and feral misanthropy of this album. For most people, it will simply be too abrasive without a sense of groove or drop like nu-metal has. People don't realize they're scared of this; they just back away. They retreat because it has a purity of spirit and strength of conviction, an intensity of imagination and a mythopoetic view of the world, that is simply not from this self-doubting materialistic and soulless modern time. As the rubble falls, this album rises above, and that's why I listen to it daily, or more frequently if I can.
- found the link