Converge – Black Cloud over Europe Tour 30/06/19@Essigfabrik Cologne

Bands: FangeSectTerrorConverge
Date: 30/06/19
Location: Essigfabrik (Cologne)
Promoter: Positive Records

Approximately at the point when Thomas joined Team Transcended, we decided to buy tickets for the Converge show at the end of June. Thomas and I got to know each other because of a Converge shirt – so we definitely had to see one of their shows together. Maik just recently dived into Hardcore and Crust – so we just take him to every concert happening recently and he seems to enjoy everything. Once again – Thomas was our brave DD, because attending a show in Cologne when you’re from Gelsenkirchen and surroundings is simply almost impossible via train (no trains back). We arrived quite some time before doors opened, which was why we grabbed some beers at the local gas station and waited in front of the Essigfabrik. While waiting, it already became slightly evident that the attendance at this show (on a Sunday) would not be too high.

The first band to play at this evening was the Sludge combo Fange from France that stepped into the spot of Candy, who were originally supposed to open the Black Cloud over Europe tour. I was quite happy to get to see Candy, but those guys were cut from the lineup for whatever reason why – we only found out a few days before because the flyer was updated. Steven was the one to tell us that there was a new band on the flyer and instantly announced approval. Hence, I listened to Fange‘s music before we went and was quite happy about the replacement. Although there were not too many people in front of the stage when Fange began playing, Mathias Jungbluth (vocals) and Alexandre Jadi (drums) obviously did not care and energetically played their set. Mathias was continuously running from left to right on stage, getting on his knees, getting up again and seemingly becoming mesmerized by the music his band colleagues played. At the same time, drummer Alexandre Jadi was going nuts at his drumset. At one moment, he was regularly playing while sitting, then he got up and continued playing while standing, sitting down again and he always interacted with the audience. After having seen Fange’s set, I can only say it was a shame that it was just a bunch of people listening to their music – because what they played was absolutely convincing.

Next up was the band I introduced to Maik and Thomas in the car as “crazy Hardcore music with that guy from Fall Out Boy,” only to see their faces when Sect starts playing. I already knew their music and to a certain extent, they were also a reason why I bought the ticket. The most important factor I liked about Sect was the politically charged lyrical content that was already evident when taking a look at their shirts at the merch table. Between the songs, vocalist Chris adressed several political topics and clarified his point of view – whereafter Sect‘s songs underlined the statements. This is what I especially love about a Hardcore show – there still is an evident connection to Punk music that you can feel when political perspectives are merged with your music – just as Sect presented during their set.

Have you ever seen Terror live? If you have – you already know that there is not a lot of variety between different shows apart from a few songs that might change. However – this is absolutely no bad aspect about Terror shows – because these aspects are the ones that also constitute what people enjoy when going to a Terror show. The energy – stagedives – the moshpit – everything at high level – this is what a Terror show usually looks like. When Scott Vogel stepped on stage, he declared that the audience should see past the possible musical differences between the rest of the bands and Terror. In my opinion, there was no big difficulty to understand why Terror fitted into the lineup. Unfortunately, having seen Terror live already and being aware with the regular audience at their shows, this was the point when it eventually became evident that there were not enough people attending the show. There were only a few stagedives and the moshpit was absolutely calm. Nevertheless – it was nice again to see Terror play again and the energy the band presents was still present – even though the audience was less active than usual. However – “Keepers of the Faith” was not played – not cool!

Eventually, Converge stepped on stage, did not lose a lot of words and started getting crazy. It’s always impressive to see every single one of that band perform on stage. While driving to Cologne, we once again discussed the importance of that band for the entire Hardcore scene – grading by the many different roles every member of Converge plays within the scene. Thus, it is impressive to see everyone of them on stage. The set was absolutely mixed with the major share coming from All We Love We Love Behind – such as “Aimless Arrow,” “Glacial Pace,” “Sadness Always Come Home” and many more. Apart from that, songs from You Fail Me, The Dusk in Us, Jane Doe and more releases were included. No matter if you are more interested in the rhythm chaos of older releases or the later style – every fan was able to get what they wanted to hear. At some points, though, the mix buried Jacob’s vocals – which was why I identified “Glacial Pace” when it was halfway through – but this was only the case for some songs. When Converge added “Concubine” as encore – the show came to an absolutely astonishing end.

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