Converge
The Dusk in Us


3.5
great

Review

by Tristan Jones STAFF
October 25th, 2017 | 1293 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: the nails and fevers of bad dreams.

Albums like Converge’s newest are my writer’s bane. The mission statement is kinda unclear, yet doesn’t seem to invite the sort of free interpretation that great ambiguous music tends to permit. It doesn’t have the same focus as their watershed releases, and runs the gamut from minute-long sensory assaults to patience-testing ambiversion in an elusive manner. The Massachusetts-based metalcore legends don't really have anything to prove, and showcase obligatory virtuoso musicianship. There are plenty of highs and few, if any, lows. This makes for a great listen, piece by piece, but not necessarily a revealing dissection of the album as a whole. At arm’s distance, it’s difficult to say what hasn’t been said a thousand times before about Converge (a few webzines with early album access seem to have bent to the wind like willow branches in that regard). That said, up close and personal, The Dusk in Us is like an updated lexicon of Converge’s tongue: the band talks a certain way, and we get most of their repertoire, here. Even to the degree of drum work, the band is often uniquely conversational, evoking melodramatic frenzy, frank emoting, and even graceful brooding.

Opener “A Single Tear” is expectedly cathartic, with unconventionally in-your-face pangs of parenthood (it’s not exactly uncommon for metallic hardcore to brush on themes of childhood, but less so from the other side). The breakneck harrow of bullet-sized “Eye of the Quarrel” calls to mind Axe to Fall, and subsequent “Under Duress” is a demented grandstand, with Jacob Bannon vomiting on stage and on the front rows of the throng amidst gang yells. Beefy closer "Reptilian" reminds of groovy late-80s thrash akin to Coroner. Rhythmically, they’ve long been untouchable. Ben Koller’s drumming translates to something unpredictable and life-threatening in its physicality, like parkour through an industrial factory. He holds sway over mortality with a wink and a flurry, almost channelling gallows humour. As was the case with All We Love, the shorter songs take the more interesting detours; I predict “Arkhipov Calm”, “Broken By Light”, and “Cannibals” (the three most concise numbers) to make many a shortlist for favourite track present, all being canned tornadoes.

The title track, the album’s monolith, clings to amnesty despite Bannon’s damning observations and air of condemnation. He sings with a smoggy leer, like one muttering prophecies across a bar in a post-apocalyptic warzone - it’s not clear whether it’s foreboding, or reflection. It’s well-constructed, and evocative enough, but the way the prior tracks leave the listener reeling might desensitize the listening experience. That’s not entirely a negative; “The Dusk in Us” feels stoned and addled, shell-shocked even, until the song’s finale submerges in ice water and thrashes about. It’s difficult to use any sort of contextual mapping here, as the song is superseded, almost shoved aside, by the panicked “Wildlife”. The Dusk in Us is oddly paced, and any investment tends to feel intermittent. Their lacerating attacks feel self-inflicted and surgical, but don’t always scar as they should.

"The Dusk in Us", dictionally, is a solemn, universal statement, and maybe a reflection of where Converge are at right now. According to the band, each album is, bluntly put, a “new chapter in [their] lives.” At ~27 years since inception, it’s not impossible to imagine headier themes of existentialism infiltrating - or comprising - the subject matter. 2012’s All We Love We Leave Behind wasn’t bashful, either, but something feels markedly different here: not a contrived tangent or anything, but a natural progression via five cycles of the seasons. There are some nods to years past, and most longtime fans will be satisfied with what is mostly testament Converge; but the band's causal nexus doesn’t exist in a vacuum, or in the grips of GodCity Studio, but out there, rooted in the mundane and then amplified to hysteria. Much of The Dusk in Us seems to obsess over the everyday, or maybe more accurately, our demons lurking on the cusp of day and night.




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Comments:Add a Comment 
JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
October 25th 2017


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

pre-order:

https://convergecult.bandcamp.com/album/the-dusk-in-us

https://kingsroadmerch.com/converge/

Frippertronics
Contributing Reviewer
October 25th 2017


15112 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

oh sweet

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
October 25th 2017


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah felt it was high time to review another album more than 3 people might care about

update - edited rating to 3.5. still ~feel~ like it's less but w/e I'm not married to my rating schema so it's whatev

MayhemWithMercy
October 25th 2017


3954 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Oh my god is this out yet

DarkSideOfLucca
October 25th 2017


8885 Comments


WHAT THIS WAS RELEASED!?!?

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
October 25th 2017


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

on the 3rd, dunno when they'll put a stream up publicly

*snaps suspenders* staff perks

Drifter
October 25th 2017


7007 Comments


m/

neekafat
October 25th 2017


6022 Comments


"yeah felt it was high time to review another album more than 3 people might care about"
Can't wait to do one of these

Frippertronics
Contributing Reviewer
October 25th 2017


15112 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

yeah a whopping 4 people will care this time around



honestly forgot these guys had something coming out but the 7" from this past summer wasn't that great and didn't exactly get me ~hyped~ for a new converge album

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
October 25th 2017


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah idk, it's converge and this is a converge album. there's plenty to like but i doubt it'd convert anyone who isn't already invested

DarkSideOfLucca
October 25th 2017


8885 Comments


3.3 shit I'm worried

Frippertronics
Contributing Reviewer
October 25th 2017


15112 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

"great"



really worried guys

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
October 25th 2017


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

@darkside - eh don't be. i like to be a bit more reserved with my rating. it's pretty square in the middle of their discog imo, quality-wise

MayhemWithMercy
October 25th 2017


3954 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I mean let's be real they'll never put out another JD again but a new Converge release is still worth getting excited over.

DarkSideOfLucca
October 25th 2017


8885 Comments


3.3 "great" is not usual Converge great tho

But OK, I'll stay optimistic

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
October 25th 2017


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

tbh depends what you demand from converge. if you like vocal variety and plenty of action and amazing musicianship then yeah you'll love this. i just wanted a bit more to sink into beyond that, or for this to really shake me to the core. but, as mentioned, piece by piece, there's a lot to enjoy.

Frippertronics
Contributing Reviewer
October 25th 2017


15112 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

"another JD"



I'm just waiting for something to top You Fail Me, yet here we are after thirteen years



but this most likely will be a solid Converge album, what's the worst that could happen anyways?

MayhemWithMercy
October 25th 2017


3954 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

JD and YFM were their best yeah, they won't ever top them, I wouldn't hold my breath.

Drifter
October 25th 2017


7007 Comments


"Can't wait to do one of these"

That's what I always think when I see the stuff you review lol m/m/m/m/m/

neekafat
October 25th 2017


6022 Comments


Wow ouch



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