Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Sepultura was formed in 1984 in Belo Horizonte, the capital city of Minas Gerais, Brazil. The names of the founder members have been lost, although Wagner Lamounier (a.k.a. Antichrist, later on Sarcófago) is said to be one of the founder members. Later on that same year, the brothers Max and Igor Cavalera joined the band. They were the impoverished sons of Vânia, a model, and Graciliano, a well-to-do Italian diplomat whose fatal heart attack left his family in financial ruin. Graciliano's death deeply affected his sons, providing them the impetus to enter a band, for Max heard Black Sabbath's Vol. IV at that very same day. They chose "Sepultura" as the group's name after Max Cavalera was translating the lyrics of the Motörhead song "Dancing on Your Grave".

The brothers' early likes included early heavier groups such as Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple. They also enjoyed popular heavy metal and hard rock artists of the early 1980s, such as Van Halen, Iron Maiden, Motörhead, AC/DC, Judas Priest and Ozzy Osbourne. They would travel to a record shop in São Paulo that mixed tapes of the latest records by American rock-metal bands. Their listening habits changed dramatically after being introduced to Venom. As Igor Cavalera put it:
“     I remember the first time I listened to Venom, it was on a friend's borrowed tape. It was similar to Motörhead, only a lot heavier. I remember someone saying: it's the devil's Motörhead! After we got acquainted with Venom, we stopped listening to Iron Maiden and all that lighter stuff.     ”

From then on the Cavaleras rapidly started listening to bands such as Kreator, Sodom, Metallica, Exodus and Exciter. By 1984, they had dropped out of school.

After constant band member changes, Sepultura established a temporary line-up of Max on electric guitar, Igor on drums, vocalist Wagner Lamounier, and bassist Paulo Jr. Lamounier exited the band in March 1985 after disagreements with the band, and moved on to become the frontman of the Brazilian black metal pioneering band Sarcófago. After his departure, Max took over the vocal duties. Jairo Guedes was the invited to join the band as their lead guitarist.

After about a year of performing, Sepultura signed to Cogumelo Records in 1985. Later that year, they released Bestial Devastation, a shared EP with fellow Brazilian band Overdose. It was self-produced and recorded in just two days. The band recorded their first debut full-length album, Morbid Visions, in August 1986. It contained their first hit, "Troops of Doom," which attracted some media attention and convinced the band to relocate to São Paulo. It is widely considered as one of the first pure death metal albums.[citation needed] It was initially released in the United States on New Renaissance Records, a record label owned by Ann Boleyn. New Renaissance Records was heavily criticized by the media for signing and promoting Sepultura.