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  • Writer's pictureR’nR With Rylo

Spin #86 : Incarnate : Killswitch Engage




SUNDAY DROP - SPIN #86



I like the artwork on the front cover of 'Incarnate' and didn't realise that the artwork was designed by the bassist, Mike D'Antonio. It looks like a Phoenix entangled by serpents with no way out. But like we know with a Phoenix, they rise from their ashes and that's exactly what it's doing on the insert artwork. Now that I have your attention, Welcome to our 86th Sunday drop from the R'nR with Rylo collection!


I have been struggling a bit this week with energy and balancing everything that has been going on. Next week I will be travelling again for work and it will be tough on my wife and kids. I hope they understand that it's not easy for me to be working away from them, but hoping that the work that I put in today helps us with our future together. Enough about me and more about the album by metalcore heavyweights, Killswitch Engage and their cohesive album - 'Incarnate'. They will be touring with Iron Maiden next year and I would recommend seeing both bands if you have enough money to buy a ticket. I remember seeing them play before Parkway Drive in 2018 and they were so so good. I didn't realise at the time but that was the last time we got to see Thy Art Is Murder with CJ McMahon before being kicked out of the band. I really can't wait to see what he does next as he has a unique voice.


This album has come along at a great time this week and I couldn't wait to spin it. 'Incarnate' will be placed on the turntable in our loungin (name for lounge room that our kids affectionately called it). This way I can hear it on the better system and turn it up a bit louder across the 4 x speakers. Do you like your metal loud? Maybe grab some headphones if you aren't able to turn it up and really enjoy this album.



Image: Mike D'Antonio (bass) ,Jesse Leach (vocals),

Joel Stroetzel (rhythm guitar) ,Adam Dutkiewicz (lead guitar), Justin Foley (drums)

 

It's time to #dropthestylus and get our metal faces on! It doesn't matter if you haven't heard of Killswitch Engage before because you will love something on this album.


If you do have headphones on when you drop the stylus, please make sure that you aren't caught out with the building introduction of first song, 'ALONE I STAND'. I actually was able to spin this one with headphones on when everyone was asleep on Friday night. I was able to turn the album up really loud and immerse myself into everything that Killswitch Engage wanted us to hear. I really like the opening track on the album because it has so much variation going on throughout the song. I didn't really appreciate what I was listening to when I first heard it, but on repeat listens, I understand the importance of this song. A nice moment this week was when we took our daughter (Q) to visit a closer daycare centre and without hesitation she wanted to be put down and go play in the playground during the orientation. It was good to see her so confident and excited to explore because that was Night Kat Kiz and my biggest concern.


If you have heard a song by the band on the radio , it might have been the next song called 'HATE BY DESIGN'. The sound has a rough and gritty opening that gets the blood pumping. I mean its hard not to sing, "WE ARE BORN FREE....from the restraints of this society". It's super catchy and reminds me a bit of Rise Against merged with Architects - If you haven't heard of either band then what are you doing ?!?! Go and stream them and let me know what you think. The band have a lot of similarities to other favourites of mine, so I will list them as I think of them. Night Kat Kiz is particularly partial to a bit of Rise Against and we have a couple of their albums in the R'nR collection. I was a little hard on our son on Friday night when it came to bed time and maybe I'm overthinking things, but I don't like hearing him upset. Even if he started getting overtired and being a little demon. I love him so much but I need him to learn that bad behaviour can't be rewarded and it makes me feel like a bad dad sometimes. The most important thing about being a parent is showing up and letting them know that you love them, even when you have disagreements.


Speaking of troubles, I heard that Leach had some troubles with the writing on this album and by the sounds of the opening tracks, I can't hear any reason why. It might be on Side B because on Side A there is hit after hit after hit! The next song, 'CUT ME LOOSE' is no different. There is a strong desire to mosh around the room all by myself when I listen to this album loud through the headphones. Obviously I won't be doing that .... tonight and I'll air drum along to this one. Such singable lyrics and heavy as fudge beats. I had to laugh a couple of weeks ago when I showed Night Kat Kiz the death metal band, Crypta. The screaming on this track reminded me of that moment and her reaction was priceless. Maybe I won't delve into it too much and leave that story for the eventual episode 3 of our podcast. It has been too cold the last couple of Friday nights and we haven't ventured out to play darts, but Summer is almost here.


One of my motivating factors to write this blog every week is to document our family moments whilst listening to awesome music. I feel the records become an investment as a memory, as well as gaining value in the years to come. I also get worried sometimes that I will wake up one day and forget something memorable. The mind is a tool that needs information and problem solving in order to keep strong and the next song, 'STRENGTH OF THE MIND' is probably a top two favourite song of mine from the band. Plus I really like singing this part of the song, "I've seen rock bottom and I've smashed my fists against it. Just keep telling yourself it will be alright". Foley's drums on this song are so solid and made me break the air almost (if that's possible).


Up next is 'JUST LET GO', which sounds like a very upbeat song, but it was written from a dark place by Leach. I guess if you have something weighing you down and you are able to let it go, then its probably best to get it off your mind. Negativity and toxicity is horrible and can lead to so much sickness in the body. Stress is also another thing that you need to limit in your life, if you can. Its anthemic and memorable and that's why it was released as a single. 'EMBRACE THE JOURNEY....UPRAISED' or simply ....'Upraised' on the liner notes is a song that changes the vocals of Leach compared to the opening songs. He is quicker and more vicious before taking a well needed break for the slower paced chorus. I would say so far that this is the heaviest song vocally that we've heard on 'Incarnate'. The stylus moves its way to the sound of dead wax coming through my headphones and tells me that it's time to lift the stylus and flip the LP over for Side B. What have you thought of 'Incarnate' so far?


Side B initially starts off with a much slower song. The acoustic guitar introduction is a nice change of sound coming through the speakers before the riffing comes in to kill the quietness. The vocals on 'QUIET DISTRESS', really do showcase the backbone of this album and I can see that a lot of fans didn't like the direction that they went with. Once again another example of people like you if they can put you in a box or a category, but as soon as you branch away from that, they react and lash out.


I like my drums hitting hard and chugging guitar riffs and they come to life on the solid sounding, 'UNTIL THE DAY'. For me there are hints of Avenged Sevenfold across this song and they are another band that you should check out. Some great lyrics to get you sucked in at the end of this song - "The distance apart, the longing in our hearts. I will remain until the day I die. We keep this path alive, Never break the ties. I will remain until the day, until the day I die".


Our children managed to mosh a little to these songs on the Saturday morning. It was funny to see their reactions to the heavier style vocals, but they seemed to enjoy it as they played with their Pokemon cards. 'IT FALLS ON ME' has a lot of things to like on it but probably won't please the hardcore fans. You always need that in between ballad/heavy song and if this track was sung by Slipknot, then it'd get widespread recognition. Machine Head and Trivium had a baby and its name was the next song called, 'THE GREAT DECEIT'. It has that balance of heaviness and lightness that keeps the fans coming back for more. There is even a hint of, Of Mice & Men sounding vocals. I know a lot of bands were influenced by Killswitch Engage and can see why they have such a following.


The next song would have to be my favourite track on Side B, because of the emotion behind the words on 'WE CARRY ON'. Another emotional track was just released this week from a little band called, The Beatles. I'll have to listen to it a couple more times before really making comment. Interesting that all these years later we have a new song from the fab four and also in a year that the Rolling Stones release an album (crazy). Killswitch Engage have given us a song that invites you to sing along, "Somehow through it all, We carry on (we carry on). Raise you up when you fall, We carry on, We carry on". If you feel the need to sing along to this one, you can find the lyrics included with this pressing.


I had the weirdest thing happen whilst listening to this album and I was tossing up whether or not to mention it. We live in an old one storey house and its built on brick piers. I was sitting in the loungin listening through the headphones and swear there was a tapping or movement underneath my left foot. Almost like someone was tapping from underneath on the arch of my foot. I brushed it off at first as nothing more than loud music and my mind feeling the vibrations. Then it happened again but felt like footsteps, as if someone ran up right on me and stopped before running into me. It was odd and I can't explain it, so I moved where I was sitting after two instances. Have you ever had a weird feeling happen like that of something that you can't really explain? The last song 'ASCENSION' kind of got lost in all of that weirdness but I do like the strong finish to the album by the band. The bass work of Mike D'Antonio is solid on this track and if you listen carefully, you can hear the clean vocals and the backing evil vocals coming through.


What did you think of 'Incarnate' after now listening to the album? I remember hearing this one and 'Disarm the Descent' first and loving them. If you are looking for more from the band then you need to check out the newest album called 'Atonement'. Thanks for getting involved in our weekly guessing game on our social pages and hopefully you found some R'nR within this album. I can't believe that it's already November and that Christmas is right around the corner. Our little boy will be turning 5 soon and he is growing up so fast. During the week when I was tucking him into his bed, he said "Dad, I'm growing so big that you and Mummy will need to knit me a bigger singlet". Hug your loved ones and catch you next week.


"In your twenties, you think you are immortal. In your thirties, you hope you are immortal" - Lemmy Kilmister


Until our next Spin, be Kind to people who enjoy banging their heads and be Kind to your Wax!

 

YEAR RELEASED

2016

PRODUCED BY

ADAM DUTKIEWICZ

LABEL

ROADRUNNER

PRICE RANGE

$50+AUD

SPEED PLAYED AT

33 1/3 RPM

ALBUM BEFORE

DISARM THE DESCENT (2013)

ALBUM AFTER

ATONEMENT (2019)

FURTHER LISTENING

FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH - F8 (2020)

FAVOURITE SONG

ALONE I STAND OR STRENGTH OF THE MIND

RATING OUT OF 5

4.5

WHAT'S INSIDE THE RECORD SLEEVE

1 X BLACK LP, LYRIC SHEET AND GATEFOLD JACKET

Favourite lyric:

"No Allegiance, Defiant I withstand. This Resistance, I reject what you demand and Alone I Stand" ~ Alone I Stand - Side A

TRACK LISTING

LP / SIDE

SONG

TRACK LENGTH

​SIDE A

ALONE I STAND

4:30

HATE BY DESIGN

3:47


CUT ME LOOSE

3:02

STRENGTH OF THE MIND

3:48

JUST LET GO

3:04

EMBRACE THE JOURNEY....UPRAISED

5:26

SIDE B

QUIET DISTRESS

3:47

UNTIL THE DAY

2:56

IT FALLS ON ME

3:46

THE GREAT DECEIT

3:08

WE CARRY ON

3:24

ASCENSION

3:14




Killswitch Engage on stage during the Incarnate album cycle







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