Killswitch Engage

With their infectious combination of New England hardcore and Swedish death metal, Killswitch Engage became the standard bearers of the ‘00s melodic metalcore movement. Formed in Westfield, Massachusetts, following the dissolution of guitarists Adam Dutkiewicz and Joel Stroetzel’s Aftershock and bassist Mike D’Antonio and guitarist Pete Cortese’s pioneering Overcast (which had also included future Shadows Fall frontman Brian Fair) in 1999, Killswitch Engage recruited singer Jesse Leach for their eponymous debut. Released in the summer of 2000 on independent Ferret Records (and featuring Dutkiewicz on drums, prior to his replacing Cortese on guitar), the album garnered extremely positive reviews and the strong attention of mighty Roadrunner Records, which poached KsE (for short) ahead of 2002’s sophomore Alive or Just Breathing. Massively influential, this album would be a watershed for both the band and the aforementioned metalcore sub-genre they came to spearhead; but it might have been dead on arrival when frontman Leach abruptly quit, only to be replaced by the charismatic Howard Jones. With Jones at the helm and new drummer Justin Foley firmly installed, Killswitch Engage would grow from strength to strength over ensuing efforts, The End of Heartache (2004), As Daylight Dies (2006) and another self-titled album (2009), simultaneously dictating metalcore trends and transcending them once the genre began losing steam. And when Jones parted amicably with his bandmates in 2012, KsE hardly missed a beat by reconnecting with original frontman Jesse Leach for 2013’s Disarm and Descent, then carrying on with their successful touring activities. All the while the band’s chief instigator, Adam D, has built an extensive and impeccable resume as a producer for countless major acts.


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