Seven albums down the line, Killswitch Engage have produced a near flawless chapter to add to their 17-year legacy.
Showcasing beyond any doubt that the return of frontman Jesse Leach was the smartest move the Massachusetts madmen ever made, ‘Incarnate’ is thoughtfully crafted and consuming from the off. There’s no room for error and it goes to show the three years working up to this point have been spent remarkably well.
Opener ‘Alone I Stand’ packs an assertive punch before a phenomenal solo from ‘Hate by Design’ floors all expectations while parading Jesse’s untouched chops. The visceral ‘Cut Me Loose’ supports the voluminous ‘Strength of the Mind,’ pulling out one of their most powerful lyrics yet – “I’ve seen rock bottom and I’ve smashed my fist against it.”
The limitless tempo of ‘Just Let Go’ shows Jesse’s range as poignant as ever, demonstrating a significant degree of progression toward fantastically fresh production. Testament to drummer Justin Foley’s instructive leadership, ‘Embrace the Journey… Upraised’ intensely projects a tale of morality, while the acoustic unrest of ‘Quiet Distress’ hopes to wash the blood away and move along.
The face-melting, album-stealing ‘Until the Day I Die’ projects deep-rooted anguish at a racing pace that we know and love from the Westfield mob. While a similar venomous depth speaks volumes amid ‘It Falls On Me’, ‘We Carry On’’s melodic solidarity refuses to succumb, while closer ‘Ascension’ rounds off the journey with vengeance laced with furious rage.
Rest assured, ‘Incarnate’ is a hair away from Killswitch Engage’s best work to date. It’s a powerful reminder that there was a time not too long ago when folk doubted their longevity, but here they are cracking out yet another gorgeous opus.
‘Incarnate’ by Killswitch Engage is released on 11th March on Roadrunner Records.
Words by Ali Cooper (@AliZombie_)