Released By Metal Blade Records
Release Date : August 16th, 2019
Jesse Leach – Vocals
Adam Dutkiewicz – Guitars
Mike D’Antonio – Bass
Joel Stroetzel – Guitars
Justin Foley – Drums
2. The Signal Fire
3. Us Against The World
4. The Crownless King
5. I Am Broken Too
6. As Sure As The Sun Will Rise
7. Know Your Enemy
8. Take Control
10. I Can’t Be The Only One
11. Bite The Hand That Feeds
Killswitch Engage, one of the most influential bands in the metalcore scene, is back with their eighth studio release and the first one labeled Metal Blade Records. The American band has been offering high quality and consistent thrashy but yet melodic metalcore music for the last two decades, most recently with “Incarnate” in 2016. Killswitch Engage is the masters of mid-tempo melodic metalcore and they are known for their tendency to use poppier song structures which rely on heavy riffs and melodic choruses with clean vocals. The guitar duet of Adam Dukiewicz and Joel Stroetzel are responsible for a great variety of catchy riffs, melodic breakdowns and memorable hooks in the entire album, even though the band has always focused on a modern metal sound.
Jesse Leach shows his incredible abilities in clean and raw vocal sections from the start, where “Unleash” gives an explosive opening to the record, a combination of power and melody, just like the band has done from the beginning of their career. “The SIgnal Fire” brings the duet with the previous frontman Howard Jones in a high-speed track followed by the mid-tempo melodic “Us Against The World”, which gives a major emotional mood to the record.
Since “The Crownless King” is a collection of thrash metal riffs, the participation of the amazing Chuck Billy is a quality asset. The surprising delicate melody of “I Am Broken” brings the song closer to a rock ballad, but the following “As Sure As The Sun Will Rise” is a return to the typical Killswitch Engage sound which goes on with “Know Your Enemy”, a furious headbanging track.
Maybe the weakest part of the album includes “Take Control” and “Ravenous”, in a more predicted style, with good guitar and drum work but maybe forced vocal lines. The album ends with “I Can’t Be The Only One”, a melancholic song, followed by “Bite The Hand That Feeds”, a speed tune with groove tone.
“Atonement” shows that the band mostly remains loyal to their already known and successful field of composing, despite the lack of original ideas. The new material manages to keep the interest of the listener alive, even though most of the melodies are predictable. Even so, the new album is a good quality and concrete piece of metalcore, which will satisfy the devoted audience of the band.
Written by: Katerina Paisoglou
My Global Mind – Staff Writer