Editors’ Notes Salem, Massachusetts, is where guitarist and producer Kurt Ballou makes metal landmarks in his GodCity Studio. Ballou honed his sound as a founding member of the metalcore band Converge, and opened his studio in 1998—working first with progressive metal band Cave In and later with more extreme bands like Isis and Doomrider. Ballou goes for a hard, dense sound that doesn't sacrifice subtlety.

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