Arise (Sepultura album)

Arise is the fourth studio album by Brazilian heavy metal band Sepultura, released in 1991 by Roadrunner Records. Upon its release, the album received top reviews from heavy metal magazines such as Rock Hard, Kerrang! and Metal Forces.[2] Arise is considered Sepultura's finest hour among longtime fans.[3] While the music on Arise was mostly in the same death/thrash style as their previous album, Beneath the Remains, it was clear that the Sepultura sound was acquiring an experimental edge.[4]

Cover with various life-like forms.
Studio album by
ReleasedMarch 25, 1991[1]
StudioMorrisound Recording, Tampa, Florida, U.S.
Sepultura chronology
Beneath the Remains
Chaos A.D.
Singles from Arise
  1. "Arise"
    Released: 1991
  2. "Dead Embryonic Cells"
    Released: 1991
  3. "Under Siege (Regnum Irae)"
    Released: 1991

The album presented their first incursions with industrial music, hardcore punk and Latin percussion.[5][6] The tour (1991–1992) that supported the album was the group's longest at that time, totalling 220 shows in 39 countries.[6] During this trek, the album went gold in Indonesia—the band's first music industry certification.[7] By the tour's end, Arise had achieved platinum sales worldwide.[8]



In August 1990, the band travelled to Florida to work on the album. Scott Burns reprised his role as producer and audio engineer, and now with a major advantage: Sepultura were at his home studio, Morrisound, a studio properly equipped to record their music style. Their label Roadrunner granted a $40,000 budget, which helped explain the album's improved production values. That allowed drummer Igor Cavalera and Burns, for example, to spend a whole week just testing the drum kit's tunings and experimenting with microphone practice.[9] A rerecording of "Troops of Doom" took place in the first days but ended up released in the reissue of Schizophrenia.[10]

Musical style


Although lead guitarist Andreas Kisser stated that Arise "took a lot of the same direction" as their previous album, Beneath the Remains, it was clear that their music was changing.[4] Sepultura's usual breakneck pace became toned down a bit;[5] drummer Igor Cavalera started using groove-laden rhythms. According to metal specialist Don Kaye, the album "represented the band taking their initial death/thrash sound to its logical conclusion."[4]

Arise also found the band opening up to non-metal influences.[5] Bands such as Einstürzende Neubauten, Nine Inch Nails, The Young Gods, and Ministry were already part of Sepultura's listening habits, and slight touches of industrial music can be traced through the use of samples and sound effects.[6] A trademark of a later phase—Latin percussion and "tribal" drumming—made its first appearance on the song "Altered State". The band's old love for hardcore punk is evident on "Subtraction" and "Desperate Cry".[11]

Touring and promotion


Just one day after finishing the recording of Arise, the band embarked on a small headlining tour with extreme metallers Obituary and Sadus.[12] That was the start of the longest promotional tour of Sepultura's career, a worldwide affair that would span two full years.[6] In January 1991, they were invited to play for at the Brazilian music festival Rock in Rio 2 where their performance was watched by a 70,000-strong crowd.[13][14]

Before heading out of Brazil on a mid-1991 European tour, Sepultura performed one more concert in São Paulo, the country's largest city. It took place at Praça Charles Miller (in front of Estádio do Pacaembu), on May 11.[15] Local military police expected 10,000 to attend. 30,000 showed up instead, making crowd management nearly impossible. Six people were hurt, 18 were arrested and one was murdered with an axe. A week before, a young man was stabbed to death at a Ramones concert in São Paulo, during a brawl between headbangers and skinheads.[16] These events were followed by a huge mainstream media backlash throughout the country against rock music.[17]

Sepultura's three-month tour with thrash metal groups Sacred Reich and Heathen was a critical success. For the first time they appeared on the cover of best-selling British heavy metal magazine Kerrang! and major pop weeklies such as Melody Maker and NME published long feature articles on the group. While in Spain Sepultura recorded their Under Siege video, which included their Barcelona concert and interview footage with all four members of the band.[18] After Europe, they embarked on the North American tour New Titans on the Block with Napalm Death, Sick of It All and Sacred Reich.[19] Max Cavalera has recalled that, before signing on to the New Titans on the Block tour, Sepultura was supposed to be the opening act for the Clash of the Titans tour featuring Megadeth, Slayer and Anthrax, but they "got kicked out" and were replaced by Alice in Chains.[20] Sepultura wrapped up the year doing a brief German tour with Motörhead and Morbid Angel in December.[21]

Sepultura then managed to secure a slot in two of the most sought after rock tours of 1992. One was done with ex-Black Sabbath singer Ozzy Osbourne,[22] who was promoting his multi-platinum solo album No More Tears while the second tour was with industrial metal stalwarts Ministry and influential alternative metal/noise rock unit Helmet.[23][22] Both of these American acts had just released the most successful records of their careers – Psalm 69 and Meantime.[24]

A remastered version of Arise was released by Roadrunner in 1997, with added notes by music critic Don Kaye and four bonus tracks, previously released on the compilation The Roots Of Sepultura: a cover version of Motörhead's "Orgasmatron", a rough mix of "Desperate Cry" and two previously unreleased songs.[4] A previously unavailable photo shoot from the Arise period was also included in the expanded CD booklet.[25]


Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic     [26]
Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal9/10[27]
Kerrang!     [28]
Q     [29]
Select     [30]

Arise garnered praise from a wide variety of sources. By the time of its release, major Brazilian newspapers were already aware of the band's existence, and advance copies sent to them were generally met with positive reviews. Artur G. Couto Duarte, writing for O Estado de Minas, described Sepultura's soundscapes as "stories describing barren worlds where disease, hunger, torture and death reign supreme". Folha de S.Paulo's Sérgio Sá Leitão pointed out Sepultura's increasing compositional skills, drawing attention to how the band's occasional use of restraint benefited their songs as a whole.[13]

The international pop press also took notice of Brazil's premiere metal group. Top British weeklies such as the Melody Maker and NME wrote lengthy articles on the band, praising them. A Melody Maker journalist wrote: "Sepultura is [...] a Brazilian metal band which seems to be in the verge of getting big – maybe even bigger than Slayer, their only true rival." Genre-specific magazines also reacted positively to the group. Germany's Thrash elected Sepultura the best band in the world, defeating major contenders Metallica and Slayer. Sepultura were also prominently featured on the biggest metal publications of the time, such as Kerrang!, Rock Hard and Metal Forces.[2] Select gave the album a five out of five rating, referring to it as a "a classic example of rock music as pure cathartic release" and that "few metal LPs released this year, if any, will triumph over Arise."[30]

Arise was the first Sepultura record to enter the Billboard charts, at number 145.[31] It was also the first to gain a music certificationArise went gold in 1992 for selling 25,000 copies in Indonesia.[7] By 1993, the album had sold 1 million units around the globe.[8] In 2001, it won a second certification: silver in the United Kingdom, for selling in excess of 60,000 copies.[32]

Throughout the years, Arise has been continuously praised by the music press, not only as a landmark release of Sepultura's career, but of extreme metal in general. In November 1996, Q magazine stated that "Arise remains their thrash high water mark, sounding like an angry man throwing tools at a urinal while reading the Book of Revelations [sic]."[29] AllMusic contributor Eduardo Rivadavia considered Arise as "a classic of the death metal genre."[26] The album also appeared in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die (2006), edited by writer Robert Dimery.[33] In January 2016, 25 years since the album's release, Arise was inducted into Decibel magazine's "Hall of Fame", becoming the third Sepultura album to receive such award, the previous two being Roots and Beneath the Remains. This induction would make Sepultura the first band to have at least three of their albums featured in the Decibel Hall of Fame.[34] Decibel would further go on to proclaim Arise as the greatest album of 1991.[35] Adam McCann of Metal Digest noted: "The band had created a monster with their previous album Beneath the Remains, but Arise was the album which broke them through to the big mainstream MTV era with tracks like 'Dead Embryonic Cells', 'Desperate Cry' and the title track which would lay the foundation for Sepultura's mid 90's success with the band poised to conquer the world. Many people regard Arise as the bands last truly great album."[36]

Track listing


All music is composed by Sepultura, except where noted

1."Arise"Max Cavalera3:18
2."Dead Embryonic Cells"Cavalera4:52
3."Desperate Cry"Andreas Kisser6:40
6."Altered State"Kisser6:34
7."Under Siege (Regnum Irae)"Cavalera4:52
8."Meaningless Movements"Kisser4:40
9."Infected Voice"Kisser3:18
Total length:42:26
Bonus track (Japanese and Brazilian edition)
10."Orgasmatron" (Motörhead cover)4:15
1997 remaster
12."C.I.U. (Criminals in Uniform)"Katherine Ludwig Moses4:17
13."Desperate Cry (Scott Burns mix)"Kisser6:43





  • Sepultura – production
  • Scott Burns – production, engineering, lyrical and translation assistance
  • Andy Wallace – mixing
  • Fletcher McLean – assistant engineering, lyrical and translation assistance
  • Steve Sisco – assistant mix engineering
  • Howie Weinberg – mastering
  • Henrique Portugal – synthesizers
  • Kent Smith – sound effect creation
  • Michael Whelan – cover illustration ("Arise")
  • Tim Hubbard – photography
  • Patricia Mooney – art direction
  • Don Kaye – liner notes
  • Carole Segal – photography
  • Alex Solca – photography
  • Shaun Clark – photography
  • Rui Mendes – photography
  • Bozo – tribal "S" logo


Chart (1991) Peak
Dutch Albums (Album Top 100)[37] 68
Finnish Albums (The Official Finnish Charts)[38] 14
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[39] 25
Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[40] 46
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[41] 24
UK Albums (OCC)[42] 40
US Billboard 200[43] 119


Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[44] Silver 60,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ Roadrunner Records UK // Arise Archived April 3, 2016, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b Barcinski & Gomes 1999, pages 99 & 103.
  3. ^ Kennedy, Hagen (April 6, 2006). "Sepultura – Biografia". Rock e Heavy Metal – Whiplash!. Archived from the original on May 1, 2008. Retrieved June 2, 2008.
  4. ^ a b c d Kaye, Don (1997). Arise (CD booklet). Sepultura. New York, NY: Roadrunner Records. p. 10.
  5. ^ a b c Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 89.
  6. ^ a b c d Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 90.
  7. ^ a b Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 109.
  8. ^ a b Rivadavia, Eduardo. "( Sepultura > Biography )". Retrieved June 2, 2008.
  9. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 86.
  10. ^ "Sepultura – Schizophrenia". Discogs. Retrieved March 3, 2018.
  11. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, pages 47 & 89.
  12. ^ Alexander, Phil (1997). "Cause of Death: A Personal History". Cause of Death (CD booklet). Obituary. New York, NY: Roadrunner. p. 05.
  13. ^ a b Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 91.
  14. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 93.
  15. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 94.
  16. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 96.
  17. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 97.
  18. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 99.
  19. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 103.
  20. ^ "From 'Schizophrenia' to 'Psychosis:' The Evolution of Max Cavalera". November 12, 2017. Retrieved January 9, 2018.
  21. ^ Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 105.
  22. ^ a b Barcinski & Gomes 1999, page 115.
  23. ^ Ruhlmann, William. "( No More Tears > Overview )". Retrieved June 11, 2008.
  24. ^ "GOLD AND PLATINUM – Searchable Database". RIAA. Archived from the original on June 26, 2007. Retrieved June 11, 2008.
  25. ^ Kaye, Don (1997). Arise (CD booklet). Sepultura. New York, NY: Roadrunner. pp. 08–09.
  26. ^ a b AllMusic review
  27. ^ Popoff, Martin (2007). The Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal: Volume 3: The Nineties. Burlington, Ontario, Canada: Collector's Guide Publishing. p. 392. ISBN 978-1-894959-62-9.
  28. ^ Kaye, Don (March 23, 1991). "Rekordz". Kerrang!. No. 333. UK: Spotlight Publications. p. 16.
  29. ^ a b "Sepultura Arise CD". Q Magazine. Retrieved June 24, 2008. Archived at CD Universe – Your Online Music Store
  30. ^ a b Perry, Neil (May 1991). "Reviews". Select: 82.
  31. ^ "Top Music Charts – Hot 100 – Billboard 200 – Music Genre Sales". Billboard Music Charts. Retrieved April 27, 2008.
  32. ^ "Certified awards". THE BPI. Archived from the original on April 9, 2008. Retrieved April 26, 2008.
  33. ^ Stuchbery 2002, page 669.
  34. ^ Stewart-Panko, Kevin (January 28, 2016). "Sepultura – "Arise"". Decibel. Retrieved May 11, 2018.
  35. ^ "The Top 30 Albums of 1991". Decibel. February 5, 2016. Retrieved April 26, 2022.
  36. ^ "Sepultura – 'Arise' – Metal Digest – The Normless Magazine". Retrieved April 23, 2022.
  37. ^ " – Sepultura – Arise" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved May 25, 2024.
  38. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin – levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava. p. 166. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
  39. ^ " – Sepultura – Arise" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved May 25, 2024.
  40. ^ " – Sepultura – Arise". Hung Medien. Retrieved May 25, 2024.
  41. ^ " – Sepultura – Arise". Hung Medien. Retrieved May 25, 2024.
  42. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved May 25, 2024.
  43. ^ "Sepultura Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved May 25, 2024.
  44. ^ "British album certifications – Arise". British Phonographic Industry.


  • Barcinski, André, & Gomes, Sílvio. (1999). Sepultura: Toda a história. São Paulo: Ed. 34. ISBN 85-7326-156-0
  • Obituary (1990). Cause of Death. [CD]. New York, NY: Roadrunner Records. The Obituary Remasters (1997).
  • Sepultura (1991). Arise. [CD]. New York, NY: Roadrunner Records. The Sepultura Remasters (1997).
  • Stuchbery, Claire. (2006). Sepultura: Arise (1991). In: R. Dimery. (Ed.) 1001 albums you must hear before you die (p. 669). New York: Universe Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7893-1371-3