The End of Heartache (Roadrunner Records)
By: Mike SOS
Taking the metal world by storm is not an easy task, yet the five men that comprise Killswitch Engage have done exactly that through endless touring, cascading metal compositions, and flawless musicianship over the last few years. With the lead singer and drumming positions filled permanently by members of the crushing Blood Has Been Shed, the band's latest release, The End of Heartache, further showcases KSE's love affair with emotionally tinged, potently heavy, and all around enchanting metal. The 12-track collection exhibits a group whose punishing metal output, found on tracks like the pounding "World Ablaze" as well as the hammering opener "A Bid Farewell", stands up alongside any of the scene's current faves. Yet, there's so many nuances possessed by KSE that give this band the edge to reign supreme, like Howard Jones' transformation from melodic wailer to death metal vocalist during the course of a single song that make KSE damn near untouchable. Blending the perfect balance of ferocious verses with memorable choruses, this sophomore effort shines from end to end as a veritable piece of classic metal that you can crank up right next to your Metallica, Iron Maiden, and Slayer discs. Jam packed with spurts of brutal beauty and pristine power housing, tracks like the driving "When Darkness Falls" and the breakneck staccato of "Breathe Life" are among the many highlights Killswitch Engage's latest album brings to the thirsty metal ears that have heard it all before, but never quite like this. The End of Heartache is a true metal gem that any metal fan needs at any cost to get their hands on.
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