ALBUM REVIEW: Killswitch Engage – Atonement

A few beers in and I’m trying to figure out the angle on this new Killswitch Engage release, Atonement (Metal Blade). Sure, to Johnny NoName, it simple to just say “it’s just another Killswitch album, you know what you’re getting.” And sure, there’s a bit of truth to that statement as we get many of the tried and tested play plays from this Massachusetts staple like rock-solid production, punchy mix, and equal parts melody and guitar fire. I wouldn’t expect any less. Continue reading

Watch Howard Jones (Light The Torch) Sing with Killswitch Engage in Quebec City

Former Killswitch Engage singer Howard Jones, presently of Light The Torch, joined his former band on stage in Quebec City, dueting with original/founding singer Jesse Leech for their hit ‘The End of Heartache’. The song is the title track to the platinum album via Roadrunner Records from 2005 that Jones made his debut on. Jones’ new band Light The Torch, which released its debut album, “Revival”, after issuing two efforts under its previous name, Devil You Know, is currently on tour. Killswitch Engage has a new album coming next month Atonement, via Metal Blade Records, and features Jones on a track. Continue reading

Listen To a Full Hour of Killswitch Engage Piano Covers

Sean Townsend’s YouTube page has been around for eight years and consists of his original piano compositions and covers of metalcore classics. His best work seems to be Killswitch Engage covers, so no wonder he now has a playlist full of them now. Enjoy the next relaxing hour of your life with this “Chillswitch Engage” stream.  Continue reading

Watch Killswitch Engage Perform With Former Singer Howard Jones In London

Howard Jones of Light The Torch, formerly the singer of Killswitch Engage rejoined his old band on stage last night in London. He joined current KsE singer Jesse Leach in a duet with ‘The End Of Heartache’. Watch fan-filmed video below. Jones will appear on the new KsE album coming early next year. Continue reading

Killswitch Engage – Incarnate

Killswitch Engage Incarnate Album cover ghostcultmag

Massachusetts metalcore legends, Killswitch Engage, are back with another solid release, Incarnate (Roadrunner). This is the second album released since Howard Jones left the group and original singer, Jesse Leach, stepped back into his vocal duties. While I will avoid the Jones vs. Leach debate, I will say that this work may be the most mature work from Leach-fronted Killswitch. The Westfield, MA natives continue to tinker with their sound to make the heavy, heavier and the melodic, more emotional and memorable, but do not stray too far away from what they know works. In no way would I call this an experimental album, but neither is it a safe one.

Killswitch Engage 2016

Incarnate is one of those albums that gets stronger the farther down you go. While some of the opening tracks are good songs, the second half of the album avoids the “more of the same” sentiments that I am sure many metalcore deserters would use. ‘Embrace the Journey…Upraised’ kicks off the second half of the album which showcases the Killswitch sound the best. Thunderous verse riffs with harsh vocals that lead into a hardcore pre-chorus followed by an uplifting, memorable chorus. The bridge/breakdown builds off of the pre-chorus parts to bring the track together. ‘It Falls on Me’ is one of the tracks that broke the mold a bit and borrowed some post-metal influences (The Ocean certainly came to mind, specifically the Pelagial album). The bridge of the track brings some of the ever emotional, yet catchy tremolo guitar work with a nice delay effect to create a spacey feel. The outro of the song reminds the listening that this is Killswitch Engage with a breakdown and harsh vocals to complete a very Jekyll and Hyde track. ‘We Carry On’ might be the best track written by the band since The End of Heartache era. This track brings together all of the elements present on Incarnate and then blend them together into one epic ballad. Heavy guitar riffs, catchy melodies, uplifting lyrics with both harsh and clean vocals, plus a little more of the spacey guitar effects seen on ‘It Falls on Me’ are all eloquently mixed. The closer, ‘Ascension’, is a return to the norm and wraps up the record perfectly. This is certainly the most “hardcore” track on the album and leaves the listener with Jesse Leach shouting “This is fair warning…your time… will… come!”

 

With so much music coming out the past couple of years, and mostly on the extreme side, it is always nice to return to the middle of the spectrum. Killswitch Engage once again has pulled me back to my youth with this release. My hometown heroes came through and then some on Incarnate.

8.0/10

TIM LEDIN

 

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