Killswitch Engage Tears It Up In C-Bus
The Massachusetts metalcore masters
Killswitch Engage stopped by the LC
Pavilion, and it was truly a night to be
remembered. My friends and I were
among the happy headbangers who stood
in line for what seemed like forever in the
freezing cold. It was clear from the
beginning that the fans were anxious to get
in and do some damage. Once inside, the
drinks began flowing strong, and we
braced ourselves for what was sure to be
an intense night of fist-pumping,
head-banging chaos.
The night started off with Australian
metalcore band
Parkway Drive. Although
their name might bring up images in your
mind of a sensitive emo band, the intense
opening riffs and powerful screams would
instantly shatter those thoughts. These
guys got those who might have still been
chilly from being outside warmed up fast.
Vocalist Winston McCall dominated the
audience with his deep, guttural voice that,
at times, reminded me a lot of Randy
Blythe from Lamb of God. The fast drums
with some nice double bass action, along
with tight breakdowns, and intricate guitars
definitely got more than a few heads
moving. A thing that really stood out to me
also, was the nice melodic guitar solos that
would come out sometimes, layered over
the other deep, heavy riffs. McCall got the
crowd more into it when he expressed his
disappointment that everyone was acting
so tame considering that Killswitch was
there that night.  The band played a short
but sweet set that featured songs from
their latest album Horizons, which was
produced by Adam D. from Killswitch
Engage. Overall, I thought that bassist Jia
O'Conner might have stolen the show with
his insane headbanging, top speed stage
running, and his full force smacking of his
bass strings. A good band, a good set, and
a good appetizer for the metal hungry mass.
The next band to storm the stage was
Dillinger Escape Plan. I admit that I was
not really familiar with these guys prior to
this show, but I became an instant fan as
soon as they exploded into their set. The
word "exploded" is definitely the right way
to describe it. Wow, I don't think that I
have ever seen a band with such wild,
sporadic movement on the stage, and with
such ridiculously fast and constantly
changing tempos and songs arrangements.
The band hails from New Jersey, and has
had many line-up changes over the years
because of serious injuries that the band
members have received on stage. They
this show.  Part of me was kind of worried
that one of them would fall off a speaker,
or that one of them was gonna catch a
guitar neck across the face. The other part
of me just wanted to dive into the pit with
the rest of the fans. Vocalist Greg Puciato
commanded the crowd with his powerful
screeches and screams over the somehow
strangely controlled chaos that the band
hammered out. The band definitely falls
into the "math metal" category with their
extremely complex and off-beat musical
style. This did make it very hard for me to
nod my head to their stuff. As soon as I
would kind of get into a groove, they
would throw you a curve ball and take the
tempo and style into a completely different
direction. No complaints tough, because it
was great to see where the band was going
next, both on stage and in their songs. I'd
say that the highest point of their set
(though there were many) was the killer
drum playing of Gil Sharone. Sharone is a
session drummer who played on Dillinger's
latest album Ire Works, and has also
recorded and performed with bands like
+44, Puscifer, and Stolen Babies. He ripped
it up on an internally illuminated drum kit,
which glowed nicely in the middle of the
complex light show during the
performance. His lightning-fast and
booming double bass shook the place, and
made it feel like my heart would explode.
After attacking the crowd with such songs
as "43% burnt" and "Sunshine the
Werewolf," the band left the stage, leaving
the audience hungry for more. Indeed,
these guys were a full assault on the
senses. I personally cannot wait to see
these guys again.
The crowd was nice and rowdy by the
Every Time I Die hit the stage. This
band’s music has been called "metalcore
with a southern rock twist." They
definitely had some solid grooves going for
them. The band was formed by Brothers
Keith and Jordan Buckley in Buffalo, New
York. Keith does the vocals for the band,
and got the place going again by telling
everyone to get their fists pumping and
keep the pit going. Crowd surfers floated
constantly to the front of the stage, and the
pit swelled as the band tore through their
set, which included songs from their latest
The Big Dirty. The only problem
was that their set seemed a little short,
because once that I felt like it was really
getting good, they announced that they
only had a few songs left. It was alright,
the audience ate up every minute of their
brutal set. It was during this set that I saw
a young lad come out of the pit with a
huge gash above his eye. He walked by
with blood running down his face, and a
huge grin from ear to ear.  This seemed
like a fan who would treat the wound more
like a trophy than an injury. It would stand
as further proof when he told his friends
how awesome the show was.
Soon after Every time I Die left the stage,
the chants began, "Kill-switch!,
Kill-switch!...". Once the lights went out,
the crowd roared. We were ready for the
main course. Killswitch Engage once again
proved that they could be the reigning goof
balls of heavy metal when the "Price Is
Right" theme song suddenly blasted
through the speakers, and an announcer
called each member to "Come on down!"
Suddenly, the band erupted into "Daylight
Dies" from their latest album of the same
name. Guitarist Adam D. was as crazy as
usual, wearing a headband, black cape, and
shredded pants like a pirate would wear.
Always the center of attention, he spent the
set running across the stage, making goofy
faces during his riffs, and growling deeply
underneath vocalist Howard Jones'
bone-crushing screams and soaring,
melodic choruses. Howard once again
pointed out that it was good to be back in
his hometown, and was greeted with a
massive applause. The guys ripped their
way through old favorites such as the
brutal, yet equally melodic "Take this Oath"
from 2004's
The End Of Heartache. They
also pounded out newer hits such as "This
Is Absolution" and "The Arms Of Sorrow."
A surprise came about halfway through the
set, when the band asked the audience to
perform the "Wall Of Death." This is
usually not encouraged a lot because of the
high risk of injury. However, upon this
request, the pit split down the middle, and
the fans rushed at each other as Killswitch
blasted into the super-heavy "Rose Of
Sharyn." After the band left the stage, the
chants began again. The guys returned for
a killer encore with a quintessential
Killswitch tune, "My Last Serenade." The
night ended with a rockin' cover of Dio's
"Holy Diver." The crowd gorged
themselves on this tribute to the 80's
classic with headbanging, and raised metal
horns throughout the pavilion.
That night, the crowd filed out of the
pavilion tired, and sweaty. Some were
bruised, and some were bloody. It seemed
like everyone got what they wanted that
night, a chance to get wild and vent.
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