Converge (USA)

Bring out the calculators, it's Converge! One of the most important HC-based acts in the US is also one of the Events with a capital E in this year's Ilosaarirock Festival, and fits nicely to Ilosaarirock's established reputation as a festival that brings the gems of punk, hardcore and crossover to the people year in, year out.

Converge, founded in Massachusetts in 1990, is not an easy or simple band in musical terms. In the beginning of their career they trusted, in their own words, in "Slayer leftover riffs", but had a more hardcore sense of aesthetics, and over the years they have created an entirely unique and distinctive style of making music. The mainstays of Converge sound are the technical and unusually complex riffs, the polyrhythmic drum fire and the neat orchestrations that manage to set the angular chaos into a (seemingly) harmonious order. Of the band's entire pathbreaking, sometimes downright visionary back catalogue, it is the album Jane Doe (2001) that's often considered – even by the band themselves – to be their most important recording. But they have also released six other albums that give evidence of the band's independent and ambitious musical direction, approved in the extreme music circles all around the world. It is only natural, then, that apprentices have started to appear and small-scale trends have grown. Converge can be said to be, along with The Dillinger Escape Plan, the two sole responsibles for the entire genre of mathcore, its development and its ultimate quality.

In spite of their pioneering work in many respects and their unquestionable technical skills, don't expect here a show-off only intended for the most distinguished musical snobs. Converge has always kept their hard-hitting bite, their dark wryness and a good deal of pure, energetic grating. If you find yourself open-minded enough and not afraid of a little bit of noise, chances are that Converge's gig can be your festival's top event.

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