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Killswitch Engage's Jesse Leach

Jesse Leach Says New Times Of Grace “Defines Us And Our Sound”, Addresses Fate Of The Empire Shall Fall


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Killswitch Engage, etc. frontman Jesse Leach appeared as the guest on the latest episode of the ‘BREWtally Speaking Podcast‘, discussing his various side projects. Among the conversation was the fate of the shelved EP series from The Empire Shall Fall and Times Of Grace‘s forthcoming sophomore effort and the EP that will follow it. Those latter two stylistically different outings appear to have been completed already according to Leach.

Times Of Grace of course finds Leach paired with his Killswitch Engage bandmate Adam Dutkiewicz and drummer Dan Gluszak. Leach stated of what’s to come from that band:

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“It’s just leaps and bounds, better. It’s more creative, it’s more genuine I feel. I feel like there was definitely a bleed in of Killswitch influence on that first record [‘The Hymn Of A Broken Man‘] and how could it not be, with me and Adam working together? And I feel like this new record sort of pulls away from that and really sort of defines us and our sound as Times Of Grace.

Where I listen back to you know like ‘Live In Love‘ and certain songs like that you can hear the Killswitch influence, and that’s cool. But it’s also fans I’m sure I appreciated that, but I’m very happy to pull away from that and do something different for this new record.”

He spoke further on the direction of the new Times Of Grace material:

“It’s a mixed bag. There’s definitely some of that,sort of bluesy stuff—definitely a lot of blues, I should say. But it comes in different forms, I’d say there’s a mixture of a touch of some stoner vibes going on there, there’s definitely a touch of like, I guess the term would be post metal atmospheric metal, you know? Guitars with like a lot of delay and like space with, you know, big, heavy bass and slow moving stuff. There’s more rock and roll. More indie rock, it’s kind of a real mixed bag of styles. And there’s still traces of the metal that we’re known for here and there.

I think with the direction we’re heading in, and why there’s going to be two releases, this first release we wanted to make sure it sort of didn’t really have any of that heavy Killswitchy vibe to it.

So the first record is going to be what I feel is our signature sound that we’ve sort of embraced and it just kind of happened through Adam‘s writing. And then the EP will be a little bit more of the metal that you have come to know and reflect on the first record. So it’s a real mixed bag, and I’m glad to say I don’t think you could really put a genre on us, because of that, so we’ll see.

I’m sure people are gonna still call it metalcore you know I don’t even know what the fuck that term means anymore, but I’m happy to say that I think that we are no longer going to be called that style of music because I think we’re more of a heavy metal rock band, if you will.”

Leach would later go on to say that both Adam and himself do hope to tour on the Times Of Grace material when it eventually comes out. As for the fate of The Empire Shall Fall‘s incomplete trilogy of EPs that began back in 2011 with “Volume I: Solar Plexus“, Leach offered:

“It’s hard to say man, stuff got really difficult to write too. You’re talking about musicians who were like—in my opinion—over my head with their talent. I remember listening to the demos, over and over again for the next two EPs that were supposed to happen and just being baffled. And like trying to find the one, trying to find like the downbeat, and be like, I don’t know what to do with this. And being inundated with writing for other projects, touring again. I just didn’t have the energy or the wherewithal to to even do it.

Those guys are absolutely brilliant musicians, and maybe someday I’ll revisit it when I get time, I mean, but, you know, very abstract stuff.

I love what we did, I think the Solar Plexus Volume I is some of the most creative, adventurous stuff I’ve done. And it started to tell a story it was gonna be this whole concept. I just got burnt down with it, man. And it just felt like it felt like I was out of my league. If I can be real about it right now you know. Like I was a it was appealing to me to write for the new Killswitch record because it was Killswitch, verse chorus verse bridge, done.

I’m a punk rock dude I get that. with The Empire Shall Fall it took me a long time to figure out some of those songs. How I was going to put my voice there, how it made sense. I mean literally taking my GarageBand laptop and zooming in and apart and just like how do I make this bounce, it’s so odd.

So yeah, maybe someday, but I can’t foresee that happening anytime soon my plate is so freakin full that I have absolute profound respect for them as musicians and as humans great people, great band. But, but at the moment yeah it’s it’s out of my reach, it’s out of my range right now.”

Speaking how far along they were with the EP series, Leach offered:

“We were just jamming on stuff, there was nothing. I mean those guys had their parts down, we had demos, but no vocals were ever recorded. We started and I just fell short… like I just lost my steam on it, and timing is everything and it just came and went, and then I got swooped away into the touring world and nothing was the same after that.”

He continued:

“Yeah, there were two EPs, pretty much mapped out. I want to say four or five songs on each one. Those guys had pretty much demoed and ready to go and I just never sang on them.”

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