30 March 2013

Converge - Jane Doe

An artist defining album.  This is how this album was introduced to me many years ago.  Now with statements like that I tend to run away in the other direction as they tend to be bollocks to be honest.  Pink Floyd was not defined by Dark Side of The Moon, Frank Zappa was not denied by Hot Rats, The Wildhearts were not defined by Earth Vs The Wildhearts. They are just moments in a career, so is Jane Doe the same for Converge or is it really the pinnacle of their collective work?

When I first heard this album I thought it started like a horse bolting out of the stables and then just plodded to a slow descent into dull nothing boredom.  This was the first reaction but I ended up with the urge that would not go away that I had to listen to it again. It tends to be a good sign when that happens.  Produced by Fred Archambalt, guitarist Kurt Ballou & vocalist Jacob Bannon this album does still start at such a frantic pace with “Concubine" which is just an extreme manic song, followed closely by "Fault and Fracture".  So far, so good.

But somewhere, the pace has to slacken - if only for the drummer - and there are still some killer moments. "Homewrecker" and the 11 minute plus title track for starters.  Yet I still have a weird feeling about this album.  Yes it is well played and sound vicious, but I have a few issues with this album.  The sequencing feels disjointed, even by hardcore albums standards.  Also I do not think this is the great hardcore changing record that everyone and their aunt define as the saviour of the genre.  Even looking back it is just a good album and they have done better before and since.

Like the emperor’s new clothes, over rated this maybe.  But it only due to the crown that sits on its head.  If you just listen to the music it is a good album, just not the greatest album that has been rested on the shoulder. Expectations can sometimes make for a recording's own worst enemy.  As I said before, good but not amaz-a-balls!

7 out of ten - This is good and well worth a check

You can purchase from here

You can listen to it on Spotify here

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