hailing from Salem, Massachusetts, Converge is virtually a genre unto themselves. In 1990, guitarist Kurt Ballou and vocalist Jacob Bannon were just “hardcore kids with left-over Slayer riffs” who decided to form a band. The sound that would result from their marriage of hardcore and thrash would become one of the earliest examples of what is now known as metalcore.
There is really no way to overstate the influence that Converge has had on thousands of bands since, but it is telling that Ballou is now one of the most sought-after producers in all of metal. Working out of his own God City Studios, the guitarist has attached his name to some of the biggest and most revered metal records of the last 25 years.
Today’s edition of Massive Metal Monday examines the conjoined songs “Precipice” and “All We Love We Leave Behind” from Converge’s most recent studio album 2012’s All We Love We Leave Behind.
I have the privilege of taking my son to see Converge play with At The Gates, Pallbearer, and Vallenfyre this Friday night at the historic Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles, CA. It should be an amazing show and I will be telling you all about our experiences there next week, so stay tuned.
When I was growing up in rural Indiana in the early â€™80s, there was very limited access to heavy music. These were the days before MTV blew up with the whole hair metal, Headbangers Ball phenomenon. But on Sunday nights, there was a two-hour radio show that came from WOXY, just across the state line in Oxford, Ohio (home of Miami University of Ohio). It was called Massive Metal for the Masses and I would wait all week for it to air. It was through this show that I was introduced to bands like Venom, Bathory, WASP, Michael Schenker Group, Slayer, and countless others. This Monday weekly column is my tip of the hat to that show. I call it Massive Metal Monday. Every week, I will pay tribute to defining moments by the artists that laid the groundwork for heavy metal to become the worldwide cultural bond for all of us metal heads.