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Stagnant - 65%

symbolic1188, December 3rd, 2006

Killswitch Engage share the same style of singing screaming, verse/chorus melodic european inspired metal as about 1 in every 5 american bands. They have done tours that are unquestionably as far from metal as it gets, such as Taste of Chaos. They are obviously making a commercial stab as evidenced by the single version of the track "My Curse". While reviewing this, it is hard not to question their integrity as a metal band.

With the millions of imitators, they continue to push forward, and do what they do best. The pounding rhythms and sappy, crooning emo choruses are present. I am somewhat baffled as to why decibel, and several other magazines have them above the imitators. They dont offer any more than the competition. There are no guitar acrobatics to be seen, and no complex song structures. It just is what it is. In a word, I would describe Killswitch Engage as formulaic.

If you have heard their previous 3 albums, guess what, you own this one too. That is not a bad thing. It is certainly a fun listen, with anthemic choruses on "This is Absolution", and "Daylight Dies". You will be sure to sing along. Listening to this album however, you feel a bit empty when its finished. Its not satisfying enough. The only curve ball they throw at you is the slow song "desperate times". The ballad, "The Arms of Sorrow", is present, along with 10 other songs that will be sure to have hardcore power rangers going nutty in the pits. I have to admit, the choruses are infectious, but this album just doesn't offer enough. I have listened to it many times, and can't grasp why they are loved so much. It doesnt grow on me, is easily digested,and doesnt get better with time. It is simple minded shit, but good simple minded shit. It is worth a listen, but will never be a classic. If you hated metalcore before, this will not change your mind. If you do enjoy some metalcore, give it a try, because this is a pretty enjoyable if not completely identifiable album.