To fans of the Jesse Leach era of Killswitch Engage, the Times of Grace project is a massive breath of fresh air. For it is the first time Leach and guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz have worked together since the vocalist departed from said band in 2002. Killswitch Engage simply hasn’t been the same since, and to see these two masterminds together again is truly a dream come true.
Since leaving the Massachusetts giants, Leach has been a part of numerous successful projects – the now (unfortunately) defunct Seemless, and currently, the immensely talented metalcore group The Empire Shall Fall. Times of Grace is his latest band, and the quality is immense. Their debut album, The Hymn of a Broken Man, is a mix of both older Killswitch Engage for it’s crunchy metalcore vibes, but mixes in gobs of melody, various ranges of vocals, as well as acoustic sensibilities. The band has a sound of their very own, and it most definitely is a winner.
The inspiration for the project came when Dutkiewicz was out of commission with major back issues, hence the origin of the album’s title. Leach penned the lyrics, who was also dealing with major personal demons at the time of the writing. Thus, this album is a very personal creation for both of its craftsmen.
In due time, Dutkiewicz pieced together the band’s touring lineup. That lineup is highlighted by the presence of guitarist Joe Stroetzel, also of Killswitch Engage and formerly of the lesser known – but criminally underrated – AFTeRSHOCK. Daniel Struble – former singer of Five Pointe O – takes up the bass duties, and ex-Envy of the Coast drummer Dan Gluszak takes up the skins.
The album has been a success both critically and sales-wise, garnering rave reviews as well as moving around 10,000 copies in the first week of release, topping out at position 44 on the Billboard 200 chart.
The band will be playing at Mr. Smalls Theater on Friday, February 25, with War of Ages, Straight Line Stitch and NeverWake in support. Do yourself a favor and take up the opportunity to catch this truly unique and special project live. It no doubt will be worth your while. Tickets can be acquired via the Mr. Smalls box office or website, as well as various locations of The Exchange in the Pittsburgh area, and Brighton Music Center.
Be sure to check back right here for a review of the show!
Check out the following links:
Times of Grace
Mr. Smalls Theater