October 17, 2023 the infamous Sepultura duo Max & Igor Cavalera brought their Morbid Devastation tour to the House of Blues, Las Vegas. With them they brought Incite and Exhumed. This is the second time within the last year that these guys have hit the House of Blues, and I can’t say that I’m mad at that. I missed the show last year and I really wish I hadn’t!
Opening the night, hailing from Phoenix, AZ, Incite. This American thrash/groove band was everything you’d ever want to see open up a metal show. Their energy and charisma is easily unmatched by many! Frontman Ritchie Cavalera is most known as Max Cavalera’s step-son and it’s safe to say that Ritchie has learned all the best from all the metal floating around in his family. He could be seen jumping all around the stage and hyping up the crowd.
I try not to make too many Pantera references in these reviews, but Ritchie has some of those harsh vocals that remind me of Vulgar Display of Power/Far Beyond Driven Phil Anselmo, and Mike DeLeon has a tone that gives me hints of Dimebag energy. I’ll always love that shit.
Incite got their start in 2004, and it’s crazy to think they’ve been at this for the last two decades. They’re one of those bands that can easily keep the pace with bands half their age.
Next to take the stage were Deathgrind band Exhumed from San Jose, CA. These guys kept the energy high and interesting. A masked mascot of sorts could be seen coming in and out throughout the set, he could be seen taunting the crowd and the band. It really added something memorable for me.
Sometimes I have a hard time indulging in different types of death metal but these guys made it interesting. Several times throughout the set, Ross Savage and Sebastian Phillips could be seen shredding back and forth with each other, completely vibing off of one another’s energy, while vocalist Matt Harvey stayed mostly stationary. (This is not a criticism, I know it’s fucking hard to play an instrument and sing at the same time.)
Last to take the stage for us, Cavalera. A roar from the crowd could be heard as the band walked across the stage to their positions. This is a special tour. The entire set consists of Sepultura songs from the vault. More specifically, 1986’s Morbid Visions/Bestial Devastation record.
The brothers took a dip all the way back to the roots with this set, and there was no disappointment on my end in the slightest.
I had seen Soulfly rip up the Triple B’s stage a few years back, so I’m familiar with Max’s stage presence and his commanding of the crowds. This was my first time seeing both the brothers share a stage. As I mentioned above though, this tour was a special one. It was absolutely a family affair as well. Not only did we see Max’s step-son onstage with Incite, but we also got to see Igor Amadeus Cavalera, who is also a son of Max’s. (He stuck out to me just because of his deep cut Acid Bath shirt. If you know then you know.)
Gnarly imagery could be seen flashing on the big overhead screens above the band, and a sweet tribute to Max’s mother, Vania could be seen in between. She passed away over the summer, and family is a big deal to these guys. It was nice to see such a tribute to her. The tributes didn’t seem to slow down the energy of the night though- the crowd still kept it up on their end. This was another one of those weekday shows at House of Blues… where the show wasn’t sold out, but the energy of the fans in the room was hyper concentrated. You could feel the diehards all around in different sections and areas.
The Cavalera Brothers/Cavalera Conspiracy will be touring across the pond this month, so if you’re in those European countries over that way, make sure you go hit those shows! You won’t be disappointed.
More info can be found here: https://www.cavaleraconspiracy.net/tour
Live photos by Courtney Ware for ZrockR Magazine 2023. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.