Yesterday, a radio rip of a new Killswitch Engage (KsE) song slipped onto YouTube, which caused all of the metal websites to write fervently about it, looking slightly foolish because by the time their post went up, the rip was already taken down by the label. Today however, that label have graciously uploaded the song to their own channel, so now I can finally check it out and feel comfortable writing about it.
As many of you already know, Killswitch Engage reunited with their original vocalist Jesse Leach after controversy and hard times fell upon Howard Jones, forcing him to quit the band. Jesse originally left the band after their seminal classic release; Alive Or Just Breathing, which pretty much defined the genre of metalcore. In this writer’s opinion, their next album The End Of Heartache, the first featuring Howard, was equally successful, but after that the band fell out of relevancy. The problem with any iconic band is when they make that great, landmark record, they’re subsequently ripped off by every band alive and then left for dead; like vultures stripping the flesh from carrion. You have to be particularly creative or smart to avoid becoming just another band in the huge wave of sound that you’ve helped create.
Perhaps my own tastes have evolved too much, but unfortunately there’s nothing in this new song that stands out for me. I’ve seen a lot of people proclaim this as Killswitch Engage are “coming back”, but honestly, I don’t see it. Not one bit. Sonically, it’s the same dull song structure that KsE use on every single song – and you know that the album is merely going to be 12 songs of this. “In Due Time” just leaves me numb sadly, containing none of the emotion or power that their two landmark albums had. It’s not enough to just change vocalists, because KsE’s problem of late was that their music was just far too derivative in this saturated market to be worth anything. Tragically, this doesn’t even inspire nostalgic value for me, as it just sounds like a pale imitation of a greater, more earnest time for metalcore.
Regardless, check out the song and I encourage you to share your thoughts and tell me how wrong I am!
Killswitch Engage’s Disarm The Dissent is out on April 2nd via Roadrunner Records.