TIMES OF GRACE - The Hymn of A Broken Man [Review]

Genre: Metalcore

Label: Roadrunner Records

Released: January 18th, 2011

Reviewer: iRoar

Times of Grace. The project that reunites two of the most iconic figures in metalcore. Guitarist Adam D. and vocalist/former Killswitch Engage band mate Jesse Leach (The Empire Shall Fall); have just released their highly anticipated debut full length album; one which many old-school Killswitch fans have been dying for.

Back in 2007, Adam Dutkiewicz was hospitalized for severe back problems. During his time in the hospital, Adam began writing material on his own, which would eventually become the music for his latest project. He then looked for a voice to complete the picture he had envisioned for the material in hand. He contacted old friend, former band mate and one of the most monstrous vocalists in the genre. Jesse Leach; to aid in providing lyrics and vocal duties for what would eventually become TIMES OF GRACE.

The band has finally released their debut full length album "The Hymn of A Broken Man;" a heavy contender to be one of the strongest efforts that Adam D. has worked on since Killswitch Engage's "The End of Heartache."

While TIMES OF GRACE are not pioneering a new genre, the band's debut full length album "The Hymn of A Broken," finds them executing some of the most hard hitting, brutally pummeling, and technically proficient metalcore pieces, accompanied by deeply emotional and positive lyrical content.

So who will this album appeal to the most? With no doubt, this will be one for fans of Killswitch Engage's debut album (Alive or Just Breathing), which is considered by many to be the band's heaviest record to date. The difference here is that Times of Grace are as melodic and catchy as they are brutal and bone crushing. The band swings back and forth between thrash attacks and sing along choruses through out the album, like on "Willing" where the song leads in with a vintage Adam D. riff, that opens way for Jesse Leach to build up a verse that ultimately flourishes into a beautiful chorus, only to return with a monstrous growl.

Being a follower of Jesse Leach ever since his split with Killswitch Engage. I hold the utmost respect for his journey. Jesse Leach has truly stayed true to his roots as a vocalist that sings with anger and emotion. From the bluesy Seemless to the politically defiant The Empire Shall Fall. Jesse's vocals have always been as guttural as they are melodic. "The Hymn of A Broken Man" finds him singing some of the most aggressive songs, behind uplifting lyrics.

"The Hymn of A Broken Man" also finds Adam D. singing lead vocals on more than one occasion, like on the closing track "Fall From Grace." Adam is also the main composer behind all the music on "The Hymn of A Broken Man" and handles recording all instruments (Bass, Drums, Guitars and Vocals). And is also credited for contributing to the lyrics as well.

Last year, we had the pleasure of interviewing Jesse for his other project (The Empire Shall Fall) where we asked him about TIMES OF GRACE. Jesse had this to say about the project:

"Times of Grace” is a very special project I did with my good friend Adam D. from “Killswitch Enagage.” The record is a culmination of years of working with him & bringing real honest music to life. The music goes from metal to rock to shoe gaze/ambient to punk. It is a very Epic album theme wise & music wise. Adam wrote all of the music & actually sings lead on one song. We have a great chemistry & being back in the studio with him was a great experience. I think people will be surprised. I honestly couldn’t be more proud of a record."

The album is certainly full of colors, and even has a full on acoustic song "The Forgotten One," that's purely a slowed-down sing along.

In conclusion: TIMES OF GRACE have crafted a great record to reunite two of metalcore's biggest icons once again, to produce uplifting yet face crushing music. Jesse states in a press release that "this record is our catharsis" and it really does vibe through out the record that it's a very heartfelt effort.

TIMES OF GRACE will be heading out on their first ever tour of the U.S. in support of "The Hymn of A Broken Man" this February (find dates here).

For more information, visit TIMES OF GRACE on: Official Site | Facebook | Myspace | Twitter

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