Converge – Top 15 New Wave of American Heavy Metal Albums
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 16:57:34
These are the albums that defined the aughts.
The '00s were quite a fertile period for heavy music. So much so that the press and fans anointed the era "The New Wave of American Heavy Metal" or "The New Wave of American Metal." Same difference. MTV resurrected Headbanger's Ball, with Jamey Jasta of Hatebreed installed as the host. Late night TV shows, like Jimmy Kimmel Live!, were booking the bands of the era to perform with increasing frequency throughout the decade. Yes, those firebreathing noise merchants in The Dillinger Escape Plan played Conan and things were never, ever the same.
If you require more proof that the public and media hungered for metal equally, well, think about how Ozzfest ballooned, inviting heavier bands to play both the main and the side stages. The annual heavy metal summer camp was eventually immobilized and replaced by The Rock Star Energy Drink Mayhem Festival, which also grew exponentially and played sheds.
Most impressive were the sales numbers of these bands. Albums repeatedly went platinum and gold, with the likes of Slipknot, Killswitch Engage, Lamb of God and Atreyu notching RIAA certifications and awards for achieving monster sales. More notable was the fact that you could turn on the radio and hear these same bands on the dial and not always after midnight on specialty shows.
Do we even need to mention the Grammy nominations? It made us realize that people with their ears to the underground and in possession of a keen knowledge of the aggressive music scene were influencing the balloting, since extreme bands were notching noms. It wasn't as though this was further atonement for the Jethro Tull gaffe that still haunts the metal category today; it was an institution recognizing and supporting a movement!
Hands down—the '00s were a legit and rich era for heavy metal. These are the albums that defined the period.
13. Converge - Jane Doe
Some music is painful to listen to. It hurts going down. Like razor blades followed by a slug of Jack Daniels. That's the physical reaction to Converge's Jane Doe, which is one of the most beautifully brutal listening experiences ever put to tape. And it's also a very good thing.
Simply, Jane Doe< hurt so good and is the pinnacle of a discography that is pretty much classic and revered for its ferocity. Converge aren't easily digestible, but that won't stop fans from taking a gulp.
The album is truly the best of the best.
The album landed in 2001 and its impact was seismic. The songs remained memorable, despite the fact that they were so discordant and punishing.
Frontman Jake Bannon, who is terrifyingly good and has this knack to make something so aggressive sound so comforting, admitted the album chronicles the dissolution of a relationship. It is also the gold standard in noisy, metallic hardcore. Or "metalcore." Everything that has been inspired by it and comes after it feels so watered down.
"Homewrecker" pretty much slays, while the title track hovers at 12 minutes of perfection.
Modern metallic hardcore will never top Jane Doe.
Watch "Concubine/Fault and Fracture" from Converge:
'Jane Doe' from Converge is available on Equal Vision Records.
See the other artists and albums on our Top Top 15 New Wave of American Heavy Metal Albums feature!