Atonement is the latest release from Killswitch Engage. Released on August 16th 2019 via Metal Blade Records.
Killswitch Engage’s eighth album is a funny one. On the one hand the metalcore/melo-metal Massachusetts heavyweights have produced one of their strongest albums since Jesse Leech rejoined the band (seven years ago if you can believe) but really haven’t moved out of their comfort zone much at all.
Atonement is a very recognisable Killswitch Engage album in every sense of the word. However, it’s a very good Killswitch album and a stern reminder of just how important a band they are to the metal scene.
If you’re already a fan, you’ll find yourself very much as home here. From huge choruses with emotive lyrics to crushing heaviness to big guitar solos and massive breakdowns, it’s all here and done so very well.
From the moment Unleashed kicks off you’ll feel right at home. It’s like returning back to your parents after months away for a home-cooked meal, the comfort and familiarity instantly putting you at ease. Even though you may have outgrown this, you’re still so very grateful to have it there and to get to experience it.
A couple of guests in the form of ex-Killswitch vocalist Howard Jones and Testament vocalist Chuck Billy pop in to say hello. The former trading vocal barbs with Leech to great results and the latter taking part in one of the more thrasher songs Killswitch have produced. Both strong offerings in their own right.
Proving they are just so damn good at what they do, the mellower ballad-like I Am Broken Too is exceptionally enjoyable. So very Killswitch Engage but so very catchy. They know exactly how to capture their fans imagination and hold their attention with tracks like this.
To call this anything but a great album would be wrong. You don’t have to be a fan of Killswitch Engage to appreciate what they’ve done here. Yes, it’s them playing it safe and yes it is very familiar but that doesn’t make it a bad album. Killswitch have perceived and this is a sharp reminder as to just how.
Killswitch Engage – Atonement Full Track Listing:
2. The Signal Fire (feat. Howard Jones)
3. Us Against the World
4. The Crownless King (feat. Chuck Billy)
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 - Atonement (Metal Blade Records)
The Final Score - 8/10