Every Record I Own - Day 260: Converge Axe to Fall
I quit These Arms Are Snakes in the fall of 2009. I left because we’d received an offer to do a European tour with Converge supporting the release of Axe to Fall. We would be sharing a bus with them, which was going to kill any hopes of us breaking even financially, and I was the guy in the band with the credit card that typically bailed us out of fiscal disasters. More importantly, at this point a couple of members of my band were struggling with addiction and I couldn’t imagine being in close quarters with them and a borderline straight-edge band for an entire month. Touring enabled the substance abuse, and I would most likely be footing the bill. I was out on tour with Russian Circles at the time the offer came in and the booking agent for Snakes said we had 24 hours to give an answer. I’ll spare all the gritty details, but I realized it was time to leave. There was no fixing this situation.
I remember those break-up days clearly: I remember being in Toronto the night it all went down. I remember it was so cold I was wearing two pairs of jeans. But I don’t remember where or when I bought Axe to Fall. I don’t even remember the year. I partially suspect I bought it at the Converge show with Torche, Kvelertak, Nails, and Narrows in Seattle back in 2012, though that would mean I waited three years to pick it up, and that’s hard to fathom. But I do remember being a little late to the record and then falling in love with it. I had just started getting into a dedicated weightlifting routine at the gym and was basically flipping between this album, Morbid Angel’s Covenant, and The Spits IV for my workouts. That was my last year in Seattle before moving to the East Coast.
Axe to Fall is my favorite modern Converge record (Petitioning will always hold a special spot in my heart for nostalgia purposes). And it’s strange that before this morning I never really thought of how this record, in a very indirect way, had a profound impact on the trajectory of my life: it ended one project and helped me fully focus on another.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna throw on “Dark Horse” and do some deadlifts.