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Members Of Killswitch Engage, Unearth, Lamb Of God & More Reflect On The Rise Of The New Wave Of American Heavy Metal


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Kerrang! are back with another episode from their ‘Inside Track‘ podcast, this time detailing the rise of the New Wave Of American Heavy Metal scene which swept the global heavy metal scene back in the early 2000s. Members of Killswitch Engage, Lamb Of God, Unearth, God Forbid, etc. contribute to the conversation, sharing their memories and thoughts on the genre they helped pioneer.

Doc Coyle, who cut his teeth with God Forbid and is now a member of Bad Wolves, sees the then nascent scene as helping drive the nails into the coffin of nü-metal:

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“I don’t know if people have a great sense of things, but that group of bands are kind of what killed nu-metal in the early 2000s. Nu-metal never really went away, but it definitely was a dirty word, and it was uncool to be nu-metal. And obviously many of the bigger nu-metal bands never stopped being huge, but just in terms of the choice aesthetic of the moment.”

Coyle also went on to praise Hatebreed as elevating the scene and breaking down doors for metalcore and hardcore as a whole:

Hatebreed set the table for all of us. They broke down the barriers of record sales thresholds. They put out that album “Satisfaction Is The Death Of Desire“, sold I think, like 200 or 300,000 copies at the time, which was the biggest hardcore album in history at the time. They got on ‘OzzFest‘, they toured with Slipknot. None of this happens without Hatebreed.”

As for what Coyle feels the defining album is of the New Wave Of American Heavy Metal movement, he cites Killswitch Engage‘s 2002 sophomore album, “Alive Or Just Breathing“:

“I think the most relevant record of the New Wave Of American Heavy Metal scene really is Killswitch Engage‘s “Alive Or Just Breathing“. I’ve never seen an album be more of an atomic bomb, in this world [the metalcore scene.] I’ve seen on a commercial level, bands come out on Monday and they’re the biggest band on Tuesday. But in terms of people and influence. Like people literally… bands changing their sound overnight after that record came out, I’ve never seen anything like that.”

You can find the podcast via iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher and Acast, among other services.

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