Since the release of their EP Victimized in 2013, Currents have carved out a niche for themselves in the metalcore/deathcore/djentosphere/etc. as fiery and precise angst merchants with a knack for touching the many nerves of universal suffering, within and without. Their latest pain-channeling is The Way It Ends, another large step away from the cliches that bind many others in their orbit.
With “Never There”, the record starts in slow-motion, suspended in mid-air; “A Flag To Wave” slams it back down to Earth with shockwaves of anthemic reverberation. The neck-snapper “Poverty Of Self” reiterates Currents’ status as distinguished djentlemen, a dual assault on the eardrums consisting of downtuned Meshuggah flavour and obligatory metalcore breakdowns. “Monsters”, like “A Flag To Wave” soars in spite of its heaviness, a wonderfully unrelenting number. “Kill The Ache” cuts closer to the core of core, its beat a jackhammer and its chorus a wrecking ball demolishing subtlety and restraint. “Let Me Leave” is equally arena-sized, oozing anguish in the best possible way, while “Origin” not so much rides the ethers as it tears clean through them.
“Split” alternates between atmospheric freefall and crushing metalcore bliss, a slight variation on the dynamic used on the last few tracks. “Second Skin” switches gears, veering back towards djent with a “Bleed”-esque herta-laced breakdown and another big chorus to put a discerning Currents spin to the track. “How I Fall Apart”, with its push-pull between quiet, pained introspection and loud, cathartic cries for help plays out like a cored-up version of Linkin Park’s “From The Inside”, not quite as melodically memorable but definitely heavier in both the musical and emotional respects. “Better Days” closes things out, sealing off the essence of Currents’ sound as a blend of Periphery, Meshuggah and August Burns Red with more weight overall.
The Way It Ends captures a band at the crossroads of a trifecta of genres in the metal ecosystem but not pigeonholing into any of them. Nobody can say Currents don’t come with their own approach and have a clear difference point to the competition; this record makes it clear. Plenty of emotional depth streamlined and refined into a sonic stew that isn’t pathetic and unlistenable, an abundance of heaviness to compliment said emotions perfectly and contrasting moments of reprieve as a quintessential offset. What you see with Currents is a band developing in a fantastic way, with plenty of promise for the future and no signs of peaking creatively any time soon.