Me

No User

You must log in to access your account.

Alive or Just Breathing

Alive or Just Breathing thumbnail

Best Offer

$6.20

Reviews

Average Rating
★★★★½
(197 Reviews)

Metal Album Reviews[RSS]

  • This album may be in the top five albums of the year! The vocalist Jesse Leach can scream hardcore style, metal style or sing very well. The guitarists are both very good and pull out some sick riffs. Sadly Leach is no longer with the band, but he has been replaced by Howard Jones the former singer of the New England hardcore band Blood Has Been Shead. Howard will be playing with the band on the Ozzfest Second Stage which also features heavier bands like Cradle of Filth, Shadows Fall (great band) and Voivod. My personal favorite tracks are Fixation on the Darknness, Last Sarenade, Life to Lifeless, Just Barely Breahting, To the Sons of Man and The Element of One. This is definatly an album to check out, espicially to one who is just getting into heavier music. If you like Killswitch Engage I would also suggest checking out Shadows Fall, Chimaira, Superjoint Ritual or Lamb of God. Keep making sick metal!

    Posted on February 2, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I don’t understand how someone on here can say that fans of heavy metal won’t like this album. I love heavy metal and I love this album. KSE is an awesome band. I mean, sure it’s not like it’s pure death metal or anything, but it is what i would call “heavy” music. Seriously people stop trying to be so hardcore by saying bands aren’t “brutal” or “loud” enough. That is the stupidest thing i’ve ever heard. How loud or brutal a band is doesn’t make you more hardcore. It’s just music for godssake!
    Anyway, enough ranting. Alive or Just Breathing is my favorite KSE album. It’s heavy, fast, melodic, and extremely wonderful. There is just enough fierce growling, clean vocals, and amazing guitars, to please the ears of any heavy metal listener. There was not a single disappointing moment on this album. If you think KSE’s new album is too melodic, than I highly recommend ALOJB if you don’t already have it. Sure, it’s still melodic, but you’re not constantly overwhelmed by clean vocals. Overall, this album has a very nice production. Fans of hardcore and metal will enjoy this. Trust me. Don’t hesitate to buy this album if you want to headbang to some real metal. = )

    Posted on February 2, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I got this cd on a bit of a whim. I was just wandering around a cd store with some cash but nothing particular in mind to buy, and I found this. I remembered hearing “My Last Serenade” on the radio a week or so ago, and really liked it, so I gave it a shot. I wasn’t 100% sure what I was getting into, but it was well worth the risk.Killswitch Engage is commonly referred to as being a metalcore band, which in their case means that they’re a mix of hardcore and melodic death metal. This means you get fairly short, relatively straightforward and solo-free songs, combined with surpisingly melodic yet extremely metallic crunch and unconventional song structures. The riffs vary from being more hardcore and driving,(like in My Last Serenade) to choppier, and more staccatto, as in Numbered Days.2 particular things really make this album standout; the production and the vox. The production is perhaps the best I’ve ever heard on a metal album. The distorted bass rumbles thickly and clearly much of the time, and it has some very, very powerful drumwork with out making the guitars sound weak or under-emphasized. Some might claim it is over-produced, but I disagree. I suppose it could be more “raw”, but the outstanding mix makes up for this slight deficiency. As I mentioned before, the vocals are just great. Leach has got probably the best “extreme” vocal style I’ve yet heard. It’s kinda a mix of hardcore styled howling and death growls. This means it’s got the emotion of punk vox (something death growls usually lack) with the extra power and extremeity of death vox.(He occasionally uses black-metal screeches as well, though they aren’t as good) Leach has got a good singing voice too. He’s no highly complex pseudo-operatic guy, but he fits the music well and has reams of emotion. Sadly, he has since left the band.This album is very consistent. There is a fair amount of variety, though many of the songs follow a basic pattern of having pounding verses and pre-choruses mixed with gentler, more melodic choruses. The opener, Numbered Days, is probably my second favorite track. It’s thunderously heavy, with some outstanding vox and a great melodic yet crushing bridge. My Last Serenade also stands out, with some ferocious, driving metalcore riffage giving way to one of the more transcendantly beautiful choruses on the album. Just Barely Breathing is definitely my favorite track. It has a good atmospheric intro giving way to a slow, grinding opening riff, giving way to speedy death-metal, giving way to another great, cleanly sung chorus. The closing section, with the slow, atmospheric yet powerful riffage combined with clean vox backed by death vox is also especially powerful. This song is simply awesome. To the Sons of Man stands out, as it starts out the heaviest and fastest of all the songs, leading up to an immensely heavy mosh-type breakdown with demonic choir vocals. Another great track. I’ll stop with the specifics, they’re all good, many of them great.So, anyway, go get this album. It’s definitely one of the top 3 from last year.

    Posted on February 1, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • If you like Hatebreed, but want something with more melody, look here. If you want Atreyu, with less emo and more punch, look here. If you’re looking for run-of-the-mill hardcore that goes nowhere, bye. You won’t find that here.Killswitch Engage are a mix of bands playing balls-out hardcore/thrash like Hatebreed and Mudvayne, coupled with the clean vocals and soaring guitar melodies of In Flames and Atreyu. There are no solos, and only one song sounds remotely death metal(“To The Sons Of Man”), but if you’re into In Flames and you want more aggression, you’re at the right place.”Sel Revolution,” for all intents and purposes, could pass for an In Flames song. The catchy chorus is much more well-done than In Flames’ choruses, but the melodic riffs and style of growling is unmistakably similar(without being derivative). Vocalist Jesse Leach was amazing on this album due to the juxtaposition of his growling and singing. New singer Howard Jones is equally versatile, but their styles are different, and Leach will be missed. “My Last Serenade” is my favorite song, and has a great riff, coupled with a sick head-banging time change and amazing chorus(also has a cool video). “Numbered Days” kicks you in the crotch and keeps kicking as you’re on the ground, even when the growling stops. The melodic riffs of the title track and “Temple From The Within” are effortlessly catchy, and “Life To Lifeless” has a great rhythmic groove. “Fixation On The Darkness” sounds a bit like Sevendust, and “The Element Of One” and “Vide Infra” have equal parts melody and heaviness. One track is a synth/acoustic lead-in, and aside from the aforementioned clunker in track 07, everything is right as rain. The drummer is very talented(also the producer!), and more praise is to be heaped on the melodic riffs, settling the music between 80’s thrash and the Gothenburg sound, with a distinct American flavor to everything.A great melodic hard/metalcore record worthy of any headbanger’s collection. A band worthy of the acclaim achieved by groups like Linkin Park.

    Posted on February 1, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Every once in awhile an album in heavy music comes along that completely destroys your perception of heavniess, or brutality, and truely pushes the limits and recreates the rules. Albums like “Master of Puppets” from Metallica, Korn’s first record, Slipknot’s debut, Pantera’s “Vulger Display of Power”, Meshuggah’s “Chaosphere”, Deftones’ “Around the Fur”, System of a Down’s debut, Slayer’s “Reign in Blood”, or just about anything from Opeth. This is one of these albums. This album completely reinvigorated my love for real metal again. In a world saturated with nu metal clones, a band comes out of nowhere and just totally crushes everyone.This album probably has the best combination of truley brutal music and incredibly melodic vocals that I have heard, possibly ever. The singer belts out screams and death growls like the best death metal bands, and sings the melodic parts so perfectly catchy POP fans almost would dig it – and that doesn’t mean its cheesy. Not even close. You will be blown away by his vocal range.You’re gonna get semi-blast beats, a metric ton of double-bass, and cutting, crushing riffs that will stick in your head for days. On top of that, the production on this is crystal clear. I wish every metal record sounded like this!All you need to get hooked on this album is to listen to the opening track “Numbered Days” – and listen to it very loud. I’m a big believer in the opening track needing to set the tone and destroy you with the very first listen – its critical to set the tone. Well, this does that, and then some. This is one of those albums that even other metal artists envy. This is one of those bands that after one release, people are already talking about how hugely influential these guys could become.One of the best metal records of the last 10 yearsDo yourself a favor. If you like HEAVY, BRUTAL music with a very good mixture of melody that isn’t cheesy, get this record. Whether you like death metal, grindcore, nu-metal, old school metal, hardcore, emo… this is a must for any fan of heavy music, period.Besides the opening track “Numbered Days”, the band has also released 2 singles: “My Last Serenade” and “Fixation on the Darkness”. Any of these will give you a good feel for the record. “My Last Serenade” is the most radio friendly song on the album, still good, but keep that in mind if you check some tracks out. You can watch the video in its entirety on the band’s homepage.On a tragic note – right when this fantastic debut was released, the incredible singer of this band had a “religious” experience of sorts and quit music altogether, even as the band were being showered with unfettered critical acclaim and rave reviews. The band has since recruited another singer who’s vocal range is quite similar. They redid the single “Fixation on the Darkness” and added his vocals for the video that you may have seen, and there is much promise. Let’s hope they can recreate the magic again! All the more reason to get this record. It could end up being a one of a kind gem.

    Posted on February 1, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now