killswitch engage

We just received a press release via pneumatic tube here at the MetalSucks Mansion confirming what we’ve known through the rumor mill for some time — Brendan O’Brien will be producing the new Killswitch Engage record, due in Spring 2009.

This is kind of surprising… but kind of not.

KsE has been broadening their sound, moving in a more radio-friendly direction ever since… Ever. Their choice of O’Brien makes sense given his track record with Stone Temple Pilots, Pearl Jam, Incubus, and Mastodon’s forthcoming new record. The new record will mark the first time that KsE guitarist / background vocalist / class clown Adam D. — himself an acclaimed producer — will not produce the band’s record on his own. The press release claims he’ll have a role as “co-producer,” whatever that means.

Despite the fact that the metal fanboys are gonna be pissed, I think that this move is probably the right direction for the band. The worst thing KsE could do is to repeat the fate suffered by many of their first-wave metalcore peers, namely driving themselves into irrelevance by writing the same album over and over again. Despite their increasingly mainstream-leaning direction, Killswitch have proven themselves consistently excellent songwriters and the quality of their material has never suffered. It’d be quite swell if the band got heavier with every release instead of lighter, but realistically it was never in the cards, and the only band ever that I can think of who successfully did this was Pantera. And let’s face it: Killswitch is no Pantera, and never had aspirations to be. They’ve always approached their music with a sense of humor, which is one of the many things that I think draws people to the band. So if this is the direction the band wants to go in, then fuck it, go for the gold — I’m sure it will be damn good.

I hope.


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