During a recent interview with Dan Newton, guitarist Andreas Kisser of Brazilian/American metallers SEPULTURA was asked how the latest addition to SEPULTURA's lineup, drummer Eloy Casagrande, has affected the band's sound.
"The SEPULTURA music, it's very demanding drum-wise," Andreas said. "[SEPULTURA's original drummer] Igor [Cavalera] was, like, the first 'monster.' He set up some standards, and, of course, Jean [Dolabella, Igor's replacement] and Eloy are big fans of what Igor did, and they respect him so much, and Eloy respects Jean so much. But I think Eloy is the next level, man. It's something else. Maybe he's not human, I think. [laughs] It's just, like, insane. Every drummer, it doesn't matter how experienced or how big the drummer is, when they see him playing, they say, 'I have to go back to school.'"
He continued: "[Eloy puts on] a very passionate, very powerful performance. I think he is, like, the best of what Igor and Jean offer. Because Igor, he didn't go to school to learn drums; it was, like, learning drums by humself, observing and jamming a lot with his brother, playing a lot. And Jean, on the other hand, is a drummer that really went to the school to Los Angeles, to MI institute, he's a guy who can read music and he's a music teacher and stuff. And Eloy, it's both of that. He has that kind of animal, 'free' feeling of a drummer, but lots of technique as well. He can read as well, he can organize that kind of stuff that Igor was totally away from it. So I guess he's the perfect drummer for SEPULTURA. He really fit like a glove with us, and he's working out great."
Kisser also spoke about how Eloy's presence has injected new energy into SEPULTURA's live performance.
"He made us better players," Andreas said. "I mean, we are on the road. SEPULTURA is celebrating 30 years. I'm 46 years old and stuff. But he really brought this new motivation to be on stage and to play the old stuff, and especially the new stuff."
He continued: "On the first shows, it was really kind of difficult. We had really to be a little more focused to present the new stuff. Now, of course, playing almost a year, jamming and touring a lot, the new songs really fit a little better with the old stuff and we feel a more comfortable playing everything. But yeah, it was a process, really. Every time you have a new musician in a band, and especially a drummer, it changes a lot of your playing and little details here and there. But I think the formation now is very powerful, [and] I think it's one of the best formations of the history of SEPULTURA."
SEPULTURA played its first show with Casagrande on November 25, 2011 in Lichtenfels, Germany.
Casagrande joined SEPULTURA as the replacement for Jean Dolabella, who left the band because he could no longer handle being away from home for long periods of time.
Eloy is a 23-year-old drum prodigy from São Paulo, Brazil who won the Modern Drummer "Undiscovered Drummer" contest as a teenager in 2006.
Dolabella left SEPULTURA after a five-year run of relentless touring and two studio albums. He joined SEPULTURA in 2006 following the departure of the band's original drummer, Igor Cavalera.