Killswitch Engage have been a staple in most metal heads playlists for many years now and things have been no different this year with the release of ‘Atonement’ that saw the band kick things up a gear in what was one of their most ambitious albums to date. Atonement came armed to the teeth with slabs of quality American metal many of which were heard live for the first time on this tour which only reaffirmed our beliefs that the album may be one of the bands best yet.
With German metal outfit Tenside bringing their guttural screams laced with melodic hooks, they look to be potentially the surprise find of the night for many in the room as they elicit a response from the crowd many openers fail to receive. No bells or whistles on stage here, just a band doing their thing and letting the music do the talking. One certainly to keep on the radar.
Its Revocation that may potentially be a little out of place on the bill and have the difficult job of keeping the momentum high in a room full of 4000 strong. Unfazed at such a mammoth task vocalist David Davidson effortlessly roars at London to wake up and whilst it may not exactly be a warzone in the pit, the music coming from the Boston death metallers would suggest otherwise. Absolute chaotic death metal from start to finish.
Make no mistake however, tonight is a Killswitch Engage show and the room is undoubtedly filled with their fans and their fans only. With Richie Becketts ‘Atonement’ artwork draped all over the stage, its easy to be excited before the band even hits the stage and if that didn’t do it for you, the setlist itself certainly will.
‘Unleashed’ kicks things off in the heaviest of ways with Jesse screaming ‘Lets go” on a walkway above the drums. Its doesn’t take long at all for the bodies on stage to create a massive heavy metal whirlwind of carnage as they whizz around one by one. While the band members themselves are unable to stay still for a second, the fans are reciprocating nicely as ‘Hate By Design’ kicks in. The fun and games truly begin now as the security teams start playing ‘catch the crowd surfers’.
‘The Crownless King’ may be missing Testaments very own Chuck Billy on guest vocals but that doesn’t make it any less of a thrasher for the fans to really go wild to. And if by this point anyone was standing still, ‘My Last Serenade’
does a masterful job of ensuring thats no longer the case.
It's the golden oldies that still manage to massively hold their weight in the post Howard Jones era. ‘Rose Of Sharyn’ in particular still proves that years later, the band still have some serious weighty tracks to pull out live.
The biggest sing-a-longs of the night however were for ‘I Am Broken’ Too’ & ‘Always’, both encouraging even the most cold and mean metal head to sing his or her little heart as if it was the last night on earth.
Killswitch Engage close the show the only way they know how. Their infamous cover of Holy Diver, the crowds one final push for a mosh to end all moshes. And they do just that. When its all said and done, all the smoke has cleared, Killswitch Engage emerge as the hottest commodity in modern Metal.
And they say metal is dead. Go tell that to those who witnessed tonight and they’ll laugh in your face.