KILLSWITCH ENGAGE – The End of Heartache

Nearly stymied by the untimely departure of vocalist Jesse Leach, the ferocious beast known as KILLSWITCH ENGAGE staved off all possibility of derailment by quickly recruiting a more-than-able replacement in BLOOD HAS BEEN SHED‘s Howard Jones. The band’s new voice has bonded seamlessly with their workaholic mentalities resulting in a new album less than two years (not to mention a flurry of tours). That album, The End of Heartache, may not be the album that beats expectations, but it certainly does live up to them. Heavier tunes with a sharper edge bring forth more metallic a bite while sweeter choruses (“Wasted Sacrifice“) hoist the band to near-radio-friendly levels…all a good thing of course. Tracks, “When Darkness Falls” and “Rose of Sharyn,” are works of songwriting perfection, boasting bad-ass hooks while delivering crushing “blows-to-the-head” riffs. Opener, “A Bid Farewell,” is an unsuspecting KILLSWITCH number that thunders with thumping heaviness, but it stamps a most memorable vocal melody atop MAIDEN-like guitar melodies. (Could guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz be a metal god in disguise?!) While Leach‘s vocal melodies are missed as he brought an intangible flavor with his “clean” singing, overall The End of Heartache is a more fluid and mature album than its critically acclaimed predecessor, Alive or Just Breathing. KILLSWITCH ENGAGE are indeed the underground’s biggest and brightest star, and they are without a doubt making all the right moves. The End of Heartache is just the beginning of path to world domination! (Roadrunner Records)

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