The Dillinger Escape Plan – “Calculating Infinity”


The making of The Dillinger Escape Plan’s “Calculating Infinity”

released: Sept. 28, 1999

label: Relapse


This one’s a no-brainer. Regardless of what you think about Calculating Infinity, you can’t deny that the 11 tracks on this album revolutionized extreme music and raised the bar in terms of technicality, musicianship, speed, dynamics–even visual presentation, album photography, and design. What’s also quite incredible is that this album was completed in any sort of timely fashion, considering the 15-month rollercoaster preceding its September 1999 release. After the northern New Jersey quintet’s explosive three-song Under the Running Board EP, things started toppling around guitarist Ben Weinman, drummer Chris Pennie, and vocalist Dimitri Minikakis like a losing game of Jenga. Guitarist John Fulton walked out right around the same time bassist and original member Adam Doll found himself paralyzed from the chest down with limited use of his hands after a seemingly minor fender-bender. Former Jesuit guitarist Brian Benoit was added to the mix, but so was an incalculable amount of pressure in the form of record company deadlines, financial constraints, bad business decisions, upcoming tours, and a guitarist trying to play bass with “gay little fingers.” With all of this piling ever-higher on their individual and collective plates, Dillinger still somehow created the groundbreaking metallic hardcore album they wanted to—one that has been often imitated, never duplicated, and is about as obvious an induction to Decibel’s Hall of Fame as you could hope for.

—Kevin Stewart-Panko

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