The Massachusetts hardcore band Converge has consistently shaped and revolutionized heavy music since their 1994 debut album. Last year, they evolved their sound even more with their tenth album, showcasing a melodic side that has only scarcely emerged in the last twenty years. The band’s 2022 tour was similarly unique - the majority of the dates had a typical lineup with a career-encompassing setlist, but two U.S. dates showcased the 2021 album members collectively known as Converge: Bloodmoon.
Along with this unique lineup featuring Chelsea Wolfe, the opening bands that joined Converge this year were expertly chosen. Each one represented a new facet of modern extreme metal, formed in the last 20 years but more popular in the 2010s. Here are the groups combined from the two legs of the tour.
Genre: Sludge Metal
Though still extreme, Thou and the subgenre of sludge metal is the most indebted to the original metal band, Black Sabbath. Their super heavy, downtuned guitars and power chord riffs resonate with the murky cloud of their hometown of Baton Rouge.
Full of Hell
This subgenre was popularized and lives on to this day through the legacy of the English band Napalm Death, but Full of Hell shows that the other side of the Atlantic can make faster, noisier, and more chaotic music with the addition of electronic samples.
Genre: Industrial Metal
Uniform utilizes multiple styles of noise, with their electronic elements adding a grinding gnarly overtone. The bracing harshness of typical industrial music gets an extra layer of engagement here with the paranoid, unflinching performance of vocalist Michael Berdan.
Genre: Experimental Black Metal
From the Bloodmoon side of the tour, Liturgy, when playing live, shows their black metal side with classic atmospheric tremolo-picking and shrieking vocals. On record, the band has included sounds as diverse as prog rock, hip-hop, and electronic music.
Like the spacious mood of the Bloodmoon group, post-rock relies on spaced-out, layered instrumentals that emphasize patient composition. Though it can take time for their songs to develop, it is well worth the wait for the full experience.
Though the tour is now over, you can stream all of these artists to support the lower tiers of heavy music. Anything to give these great bands a boost!