99% of who came to this venue, The Space, had never been here before. All we knew was Killswitch Engage was playing, and we had to be there. The show sold out either the day before or early on the day of the show.
Joey DeFalco and I had no issues getting in, which is always refreshing. I very quickly noticed Killswitch’s new CD “Atonement” at the merch table and purchased it immediately. Keep in mind this was 2 days before release date (Friday, August 16th). Don’t look far for that album review.
We were treated to 4 brand new songs, all of which were warmly received and fit perfectly into their set. There hadn’t been any crowd movement during the first 2 bands, but it was all unleashed (pun intended) once KSE were on. The pit opened wide and went hard. Crowd surfers were tearing it up, including vocalist Jesse Leach a couple times.
6 Howard Jones-era songs were played throughout, none of which would surprise you. “A Bid Farewell”, “Rose of Sharyn”, “My Curse”, “This is Absolution”, “The End of Heartache”, and the classic cover of Dio’s “Holy Diver” to finish off the show. I’m still hoping to hear “When Darkness Falls”, “Breathe Life”, “Declaration”, “Wasted Sacrifice”, “Daylight Dies”, or anything off the 2009 self titled album one of these days. Only because I want to hear Jesse over them.
Besides that, we of course got the pleasure of seeing “Hate by Design”, “My Last Serenade”, “Beyond the Flames”, “In Due Time”, “Always”, and “Strength of the Mind”.
Following them for 17 of their 20 year existence, it’s interesting to see them have enough material now that they can’t fit in songs that you normally would’ve *always* seen in their setlists. Not a bad problem to have, especially when there’s an overabundance of amazing material.
By the time “Holy Diver” was finished and the show ended, we were all hot sweaty messes, completely fulfilled by a great night of Metal. The right amount of heavy, the choruses for everybody to sing along to, the highly memorable songs, pure passion and energy, and a very strongly dedicated fan base… You’ll never go wrong with a Killwitch show.
Shoutout to openers Perfect Beings and Thrown Into Exile for helping kick the night’s ass to lead into Killswitch. Job well done, even if nobody was moving.
Review by Marcus Miller, Photos by Joey DeFalco