Live Reviews

Converge and Touché Amoré live at London Koko

London Koko,

Tall, cavernous theatres like Koko may not be the ideal setting for a hardcore show, but then Converge are no ordinary hardcore band, and tonight’s line-up reflects this.

A Storm Of Light are armed with some seriously seismic grooves that fill the venue with ease, and give its foundations a bit of a shake into the bargain. Behind the band, a huge projector screen shows footage of rioting, war and burning cities – an appropriate backdrop if ever there was one, as this is perfect ‘impending apocalypse’ music. It’s an assault on the senses, and an oddly reassuring one at that.

A combination of almost non-stop touring and last year’s excellent ‘Parting The Sea Between Brightness And Me’ album have gained Touché Amoré plenty of well-deserved recognition, and tonight they justify the hype in fine style. Every word is screamed back at vocalist Jeremy Bolm as his band rip through the likes of ‘Pathfinder’ and ‘Home Away From Home’ with minimum stage patter and maximum conviction. They’re clearly stoked to be touring with Converge, and with their intelligent, honest approach to hardcore, greater things surely await Touché Amoré.

The last time we witnessed Converge separated from their audience by a barrier (at the Electric Ballroom a few years ago), frontman Jacob Bannon seemed uncomfortable – prowling the stage like a lion unable to savage a nearby herd of wildebeest. This time around, he comes across more like a hardcore Spiderman – zipping around the stage with barely a pause for breath, and that’s when he’s not actually down on the barrier screaming into the front rows.

Never slouches in the live department, Converge get through a good 20-odd songs tonight. ‘Sadness Comes Home’ (a highlight of recent album ‘All We Love We Leave Behind’) is already a crowd favourite, although – as ever – ‘Jane Doe’ era favourites like ‘Bitter And Then Some’ are the ones that really push the already-seething pit into overdrive.

Few bands find themselves making some of their best records after nearly two decades’ existence, but such is Converge’s position. No surprise that their fans are as devoted as they come, and on tonight’s evidence, that shouldn’t change anytime soon.

Alex Gosman

Music Music News New Releases

Stream Converge Album In Full

Converge-All-That-You-Leave-Behind-Artwork-CrossfireIn preparation for 2012’s most anticipated metal/hardcore album of the year, Boston’s Converge are streaming their 8th studio album, ‘All We Love We Leave Behind’ in its entirety via Youtube (embedded below).

The album has been spinning on the Crossfire HQ stereo for sometime, and let us tell you now, its intensely heavy. No one quite channels aggression in the same way as Converge. Front man Jacob Bannon comments:

“All of our albums are emotional but I feel this is our most potent album to date… Success to me is creating something that’s moving and fulfilling and I truly feel both of those things when I listen back and experience this album from start to finish.”

All We Love We Leave Behind’ will be released October 8th via Epitaph Records (vinyl on Deathwish). Fans can pre-order the album here. Converge will be performing at the following dates:

25th, London @ Koko
26th, Birmingham @ O2 Academy 2
27th, Colchester @ Arts Centre
28th, Glasgow @ Classic Grand
29th, Manchester @ Academy 2
30th, Dublin @ The Button Factory
1st, Brighton @ Concorde 2

Music News

Converge cover Black Flag, Negative Approach & The Cure

Hardcore legends Converge are back with a new album on epitaph records this October 12th titled ‘All We Love We Leave Behind‘ and have rolled out cover versions of classic predecessors Black Flag, Negative Approach and The Cure.

The new album landed at crossfire HQ last week and we can tell you that even though it’s their 8th album, it will annihilate your ears.

Vocalist Jacob Bannon added, “I think we really stepped up our game on this record. The most important thing to this band is that with every album we want to create something that excites us and moves us in some way. There are a lot of subtle nuances on this record are really special to us and we definitely hit those individually on this record.”

Watch the video for first track Aimless Arrow here and stream these covers. You will be surprised by The Cure!

Music News

Converge plan new documentary

Converge have posted a short studio video.

The band are currently working on their new album, the follow up to Axe To Fall, released in 2009. The band have filmed the process for a mini-documentary, produced by Ian McFarland which is said to concentrate on the frontman and visual artist of the band, Jacob Bannon.

A short and not-so-sweet clip is below.

Music News

Hevy Fest announce first wave of bands

Hevy Fest have announced the first wave of bands for this year’s festival.

The event takes place on the weekend of August 3rd-6th at Port Lympne Wild Animal Park in Kent with tickets costing £96 for the weekend with camping, which includes entry to the Animal Park.

The bands announced so far include Protest The Hero, Converge, Will Haven, A Wilhelm Scream, Sharks, Pianos Become The Teeth and Set Your Goals amongst others. If you fancy some of that, then the place to grab tickets and further information is

Album Reviews Buzz Chart

United Nations

United Nations – Never Mind The Bombings, Here’s Your Six Figures
Deathwish Inc.

United Nations is somewhat of a supergroup yet they’re one that doesn’t really shout about it. They play shows, write and record music, release the music independently (through Deathwish) and occasionally play live. People like them. Yet there hasn’t been a great song and dance about them yet. I guess it helps that their name is virtually ungooglable. And the exact identity of the members is somewhat of a mystery, apparently partly due to certain people being obligated by certain record contracts. However, they are led vocally by Thursday’s Geoff Rickly and it’s really awesome to hear him properly let rip on some rather aggressive vocals as opposed to his more melodic tendencies in (the equally awesome) Thursday. Glassjaw’s Daryl Palumbo and Converge’s Ben Koller are also rumoured to be involved.

Never Mind The Bombings… is the band’s latest release and has been released as a 7” EP and download. It’s a full-on onslaught of crushing drumming, searing riffs and head-combusting vocals that’s definitely not for the faint-hearted. The music lies somewhere between Converge and Thursday and comes across as a viciously cathartic experience for all involved, whoever that may be. The EP is a melting pot of hardcore and metal influences and is really just a taster of what this band is capable of doing live. Fast, hard and uncompromisingly heavy, let’s hope there’ll be more touring soon.