For Those About to Squawk: Converge, Malokarpatan

Happy Halloween, yo. So here’s the deal: every couple of weeks, I review some upcoming releases, some I like, some I don’t… well, there’s no real way to tell until you read on… IF YOU DARE…

Admittedly, I am not a huge Converge fan, and I often get birdshit for it, so I’m going to review The Dusk In Us. Of course everyone in the press is going to like it. My opinion? (Deep breath) It’s pretty good. The first beat to be noted here is vocalist Jacob Bannon’s sound… it’s different than other releases, gone (not entirely) are the screams and one can mostly decipher what’s being said which gives a little more depth to the overall record. Stylistically, there is a difference here (no Converge records sound the same,) but there’s a lot of post-rock kind of noise and groove to it, proving that Converge can be different, catchy and heavy all at the same time. That’s not to say that their trademark sound is gone. It’s not, there’s a ton of fury on this thing, and still rips the listener apart at times. Guitarist Kurt Ballou did a great job on the recording and production (as if there’d be anyone else better suited for the job).  Few band can or could pull off what Converge do, and Converge do it well as proved on The Dusk In Us.  8 Fucking Pecks.

I’m going to try out the Bratislavian black metal/folk metal band Malokarpatan… I typically don’t review things like this, because I don’t want my spell check to constantly go off… Anyway, Nordkarpatenland on Invictus Productions is, well, old school.  Think old Bathory, Celtic Frost, Mayhem and maybe even a little Kill ‘Em All Metallica thrown in. This is how black metal is supposed to be, dark, grim, about monsters and stuff.  The “folk” part of this band doesn’t even throw me off.  This is first wave black metal (sounds like it) and has brief passages of folk metal thrown in (no real overt “goblin” stuff here), just some flavoring here and there for effect.  This is by no means the best record of the year, but not too bad for this sort of thing (song titles are epic). 5 Fucking Pecks.

So, usually I’d review another upcoming release, but I’d like to talk about the passing of one of metal’s greats. Celtic Frost’s (and Hellhammer’s) bass player Martin Ain has died. Celtic Frost was a huge influence on so many people, including this birdbrain… It is a sad day indeed, as extreme metal as we know it would not exist without his contribution to some of the heaviest songs ever made.  RIP.

Also don’t forget the Decibel Metal and Beer Fest tickets are available featuring HATEBEAK! What? Wait, I thought you said… OK, never mind.  Either way, it’s a killer lineup and a great time, so peck out tickets here.