AN OPEN LETTER TO KILLSWITCH ENGAGE
Dear Killswitch Engage,
I was very happy to hear that Jesse Leach has re-joined the band. I don’t mean to be disrespectful to Howard Jones. I think HJ is a great vocalist and a great performer, and I love The End of Heartache. But I don’t think it’s any secret that you fellas needed some kind of creative kick in the pants. And Leach did an amazing job when he played with you back in 2010, and Alive or Just Breathing is a bonda fide modern classic. If you weren’t going to be able to move forward with Howard Jones, then, really, getting Leach back was the only move that made any real sense. So, mazel tov! I am officially excited to hear your new album and see you dudes live again.
Now, if I may be so bold, a humble request to keep in mind while moving forward: please don’t let your reunion album sound like Times of Grace.
Now, right off that bat, I know that’s unfair. For one thing, the assertion that a new Leachified KsE album even could sound like Times of Grace implies that neither Joel Stroetzel nor Mike D’Antonio nor Justin Foley make any substantial contributions to the band, and I don’t believe that. Also, The Hymns of a Broken Man might not have been a great album, but it really wasn’t that bad, either. You wrote some pretty good songs for that release. Really, the tunes were not my major complaint about Hymns.
My complaint is that it just sounded too slick — y’know, like the last couple of Killswitch Engage or All That Remains albums? I know you guys were never exactly Mayhem, but you can’t tell me that Heartache and, especially, AoJB, don’t sound heavier and more raw. And I know it’s a cliché, but we’re METAL FANS, fer cryin’ out loud — OF COURSE we are going to respond to stuff that is truly heavier and more raw. It’s, like, in the job description.
I know that as artists you have to evolve, and you’re not the same guys (in some cases literally) who made AoJB, and I’m not expecting AoJB 2.
I’m just saying that some things are better when they’re a little rough around the edges.
With as much respect as an elitist hypercritical cranky blogger fuck can give,
Double-Jew Axl Rosenberg