Welcome to the madness, that dwells inside these eyes. Ideal welcome from the band in the opening track, ideal start for their eighth full-length album. Killswitch Engage will rarely disappoint their fans. A constant release of new records, without changing their sound, but doing what they can in the best possible way. After all, they are one of the few bands that shaped the metalcore sound and continue to serve it with admirable consistency.
As for the songs, the things are once more crystal clear. No matter if they play slow or fast, the result is impressing. But I will like to mention a few for some reasons. The opener “Unleashed” is a mid-tempo monster. “As The Sun Will Rise” and “Ravenous” are killer tracks. In the amazing “The Signal Fire” there are riffs that many bands of the death and thrash metal revival scene would like to write, but they will never be able to. In this one we find also Howard Jones of Light The Torch, former singer of the band who replaced Jesse Leach for some years, in a deadly duet that we’ve seen before in other releases and on stage.
In “The Crownless King”, where the thrashy riffs are all over the place, we have another guest in the face of Chuck Billy (Testament) who screams in a way that you won’t be able to recognize him from the start. Also, I have to mention “I Am Broken Too”, a song with simple but very strong lyrics, that talks about mental illness. Part of the earnings from the single of this one, were given to the non-profit organization Hope For The Day that focuses on suicide prevention through music and art. A very important move from the band, as Leach has suffered in the past from issues like this.
“Atonement” doesn’t have weak moments. It’s full of amazing riffs and melodies, great lyrics, excellent performance from all the musicians and of course flawless production from their guitarist and master of this sound Adam Dutkiewicz. Killswitch Engage show once more that metalcore, even if it was heavily criticized (at some point for the right reasons), still gives us memorable moments if done right.