Killswitch Engage are touring and performing veterans, but tonight, April 17, the band ventures into new ground during their Killthrax Tour with Anthrax. For the first time the Killswitch show (Anthrax will not be included) will be broadcast live in virtual reality from Houston's House of Blues starting at 11pm CT.
Many years ago when Headbanger’s Ball went off the air it seemed to slip off the radar. I don’t remember anyone really getting up in arms or writing angry letters. People (including myself) just shrugged their shoulders and said, “that sucks, man.” As time went by it became painfully apparent how much a show that featured up and coming metal bands was needed. During that fairly dark period in hard rock, the mainstream became flooded with post-grunge wannabes, clowns with guitars, and watered nu-metal that seemed more like 1980s butt-rock than raw and powerful music. The underground began to flourish during that time as an antithesis to what was getting played on the radio. It was getting angrier and percolating much like hardcore punk did in the early 80s.
Fans began to see the hole that was left when MTV canceled its only outlet for heavy bands. An uproar grew as a growing need to give this new group of talented bands a forum to be seen. Eventually the execs at MTV brought the show back with the same name as before and put on their all music station, MTV2. The programmers for the show now have a cornucopia of lean, hard-hitting and innovative bands to play on the show. In fact, there are so many that Headbanger’s Ball has just released a double disc of metal on Roadrunner Records. Along with the CD they also have launched a tour featuring four groups that are on that disc. The bill has Killswitch Engage, Lamb of God, and Shadows Fall co-headlining and Unearth opening the first half of the tour. It comes to the Ogden Theater in Denver November 11th. I had the chance to talk with members of the co-headliners before the tour came through Denver.