Convergent Chaos

Metalcore innovators Converge shred micro-set for Chaos in Tejas

Chaos personified: Converge vocalist Jacob Bannon
Chaos personified: Converge vocalist Jacob Bannon (by Richard Whittaker)

Metalcore fans had a choice at last weekend's Chaos in Tejas: Everyone could get to see a little bit of Converge, or a few people could see a lot. What they got was all the Salem, Mass., mayhem they could take, crammed into a half-hour flurry of gut-punch classics.

They had a little detour on their way from St. Louis: Bassist Nate Newton had been stuck in an Oklahoma hospital overnight, and the band had slept in the parking lot. After the quartet screamed down the highways, making it to Red River just before the outdoor curfew kicked in, there was talk of moving the set inside. Mercifully, sensible heads prevailed. So rather than attempt the "ten gallon bucket into a pint glass" impossibility of shoving the whole packed back deck into the bar, it was a shorter set than the hour listed: Shorter, but no less intense.

Chief screamer Jacob Bannon seemed to get the pressure. "We've only got thirty minutes, so let's just fucking crank it out," he growled, pacing the stage. Kurt Ballou warmed up some of metal's fastest fingers with licks from "Am I Evil?" and "Iron Man," before Newton's rumbling bass set the breakneck pace on "Runaway," from a new split 7-inch with Drop Dead. Three blitzkrieg assaults later, Bannon's black tee was shredded as stage divers took flight from the middle deck and the circle pit grew jagged edges.

Bannon warned that "Reap What You Sow" was about "leaving your mark in this world," and the discordant thrash did just that. "Cutter" lived up to its name, a ripsaw hardcore explosion, before the double-headed beast of "First Light/Last Light" soared then roared. They did not just unleash enough fury for the whole hour: They crammed in a tour's worth.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Chaos in Tejas
Chaos in Tejas Returns with A Weekend in Austin
Chaos in Tejas Returns with A Weekend in Austin
Organizer Timmy Hefner books a mini fest May 28 – June 1

Kevin Curtin, April 18, 2014

Chaos in Tejas in Doubt
Chaos in Tejas in Doubt
Organizer Timmy Hefner says he simply can’t top himself

Kevin Curtin, Jan. 20, 2014

More by Richard Whittaker
That's One Pricey Burrito: Chuy's Sells for $605 Million
That's One Pricey Burrito: Chuy's Sells for $605 Million
Austin original acquired by Darden Restaurants, Inc.

July 18, 2024

Pale imitation of what made the original such an unexpected smash of a disaster movie

July 19, 2024


Converge, Chaos in Tejas

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle