Killswitch Engage - Killswitch Engage review


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Band: Killswitch Engage
Album: Killswitch Engage
Release date: June 2009

Disc I
01. Never Again
02. Starting Over
03. The Forgotten
04. Reckoning
05. The Returns
06. A Light In A Darkened World
07. Take Me Away
08. I Would Do Anything
09. Save Me
10. Lost
11. This Is Goodbye
12. In A Dead World [special deluxe edition bonus]
13. My Curse [live] [special deluxe edition bonus]
14. Rose Of Sharyn [live] [special deluxe edition bonus]
15. Holy Diver [Dio cover] [live] [special deluxe edition bonus]

Disc II [deluxe edition DVD]
+ Making Of
+ On the road and behind the scenes
+ Over 30 minutes of backstage footage
+ Exclusive in studio interviews and more

After a run of three albums that saw Killswitch Engage become one of the biggest names in modern metal, this album came along and saw the wheels fall off the bus for the band. While not a bad album, it saw the band unable to carry over the momentum and subsequently saw the end of the Jones era of the band. Killswitch Engage is an album I reach for on rare occasions, not because it is bad per se, but because the band had (and subsequently have) done better things, leaving this album to find its spot near the back tucked away behind other albums.

Autopilot is the word that will stick with you for most of this album; few songs seem to have the sense of purpose other albums possess, with the songs seemingly being a paint-by-numbers affair by the band. The riffs often sound like outtakes from prior records that didn't make the cut due the band having better ones to use; more often than not, the riffs don't really do much to jump out at you. "The Forgotten" and "Lost" feel like a botch job of subpar components put together to pad the album out rather than warranting a spot-on merit.

The album mostly plods along happy to sit in the middle lane, with songs just passing by with little to distinguish them as being better than the other; "Reckoning" and "The Return" see the album slump into this pattern not long after starting. Neither song is particularly bad, but they don't do much to grab your attention in the way other albums had. Whereas prior albums weren't flawless, they at least felt like it wasn't for lack of effort; that isn't something I get when I listen to most of this record.

That isn't to say the album isn't without merit; "Take Me Away" and "This is Goodbye" would slot comfortably among the rest of the band's hits on any future greatest hits collection, both seeing the band shake themselves out of the stupor they were in the midst of with this album. Other songs are strong and do warrant replaying, such as "Save Me" and "I Would Do Anything", and do show the band could rise to it when they seemingly wanted to.

It was a shame to see the Jones era end on a low note; having taken the band to new heights, they appeared to be stalling by this point. The album sparks but rarely catches flame; the lights were growing dim for the band as a result. While both the band and Jones have gone on to do greater things than this album, they at least gave us a few songs to add to what was one of the highlights of the metalcore scene of the 2000s.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 7
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 7
Production: 8

Written by omne metallum | 21.05.2020


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.


Comments: 1   Visited by: 4 users
21.05.2020 - 15:13
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Well I agree its radio friendly, Sweden we had or have still dunno bandit rock, like 10 years ago I did listen it but there was 1000 modern songs 2 classic and so on, I got sick of play list. I like radio when ppl talk. They plaid this and your other review Bullet For My V a lot
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