7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
None more hardcore., 18 Nov 2006
This has been out for weeks and no-one has reviewed it? Sort it out.
As the much awaited new release from arguably the best hardcore band of all time, and the follow up to critically acclaimed 2004 masterpiece 2004 'You Fail Me', Converge's 'No Heroes' has much to live up to.
Risking cliché, this album does more than justice to its heritage. The sound has noticeably evolved, as the band now combine the punk-metal brutality of 'You Fail Me' with the 'Petitioning the Empty Sky' / 'When Forever Comes Crashing' era's dark, atmospheric artistry, and the band are as tight as they have ever been. One of the highlights is the way haunting, desolate soundscapes such as 'Weight of the Worlds' segue seamlessly into the 'Jane Doe'-esque speedy, chaotic thrash-outs, such as the title track 'No Heroes'. The epic nine-minute outing 'Grim Heart/Black Rose' is another highlight. Obviously though, this is not an album to have standout tracks, as it is more a cohesive body of work. A bleak, nerve-rending, joyous body of work.
As fans will know, Converge's artistry stretches beyond the music into the visual, and this is certainly the case with 'No Heroes'. The CD comes with a card sleeve featuring a dove in shadow silhouetted against the recurring 'sun' image, and this theme continues in the fold-out inlay. As always the artwork, designed entirely by vocalist Jacob Bannon, would be more than welcomed plastered all over my room (for which purpose I recommend the rereleased 'Petioning Forever' vinyl), and deserves far more recognition than it gets.
This then, is a must own for Converge fans, and indeed fans of all heavy music (properly heavy mind, none of your Trivium here). Converge will forever be haunted by the shadow of their seminal 'Jane Doe', and true, this is probably a better first stop in your collection, but it is difficult to compare the albums quality-wise as they are so diverse. I was late getting into Converge (upon release of You Fail Me), but it changed my life and it will change yours.
On top of all this, the split EP with Agoraphobic Nosebleed, 'The Poacher Diaries', is being remastered and rereleased, and Converge are to tour the UK in 2007. It's going to be a good year.