End of Heartache

What a year it's shaping up to be for Killswitch Engage, they follow another well received album in 'As Daylight Dies' by selling out one of the biggest venues in Manchester.

The Academy is packed and the band arrives to a deafening roar, everyone appears to be up for this and the crowd is with them straight away. Although not quite loud enough, the sound is excellent and the whole band seem to be on top form tonight. Guitarist Adam (who appears to have come as some kind of superhero, complete with cape!) dedicates 'Daylight Dies' to a girl's 'rack' and they immediately prove to any doubters that the new material is as strong, if not stronger than all that has gone before.

KSE's winning formula comes with their great anthemic choruses that balance out the hard riffs. They've hit upon just the right mix of power and melody that allows them to litter every song with dynamics. Vocalist Howard bounds across the stage from beginning to end, during which time his light blue shirt gradually turns dark blue, an indication of just how much energy he puts into his performance. Now I have to confess that I'm not the biggest fan of KSE's recorded work but the new songs really do stand out tonight. 'This Is Absolution' quite frankly just kicks ass with some excellent musicianship throughout. How do you follow that? Well if you're KSE you crank it up another notch and get a huge circle pit going!

The new material continues to impress with 'Unbroken' but it's crowd favourite and set closer 'My Last Serenade' that really gets the whole place jumping. Naturally they return for an encore although it only lasts one song, which is surprising, however they go out in style with 'Take This Oath'. At just over an hour it's been a short headline set but KSE have impressed again, there's just something eminently likeable about them, there's no bullshit, they just get up and do it. The crowd love it, the band love it and everybody goes home wet but happy.