Up and coming hard rock outfit Killset’s new full-length studio recording Know Your Killer is one of the more intriguing records to be released so far this year. The eleven-track record is such an intriguing effort in that coming from an unsigned and obviously relatively unknown act, it presents the band as a group that has great potential being right at the start of its life. This is obvious right from the album’s opening track ‘My Whole Life.’ The brooding rocker presents interesting influences from the likes of Breaking Benjamin, Deftones, and others of their ilk both musically and lyrically. ‘Forget You’ is another of the album’s more notable moments. That is thanks to its mix of metal and industrial influences in regards to its musical content. Examining its lyrical content, its no nonsense message is one that is certain to connect with audiences. The combination of both elements make this song one that could easily hold its own against any of its more well-known hard rock brethren given the chance at any of America’s mainstream rock radio stations. ‘A Better Way,’ the disc’s penultimate composition is one more of the album’s most noteworthy moments. That is because it shows a side of the band. That will be discussed later. Getting back on topic, all three of the songs noted here are in their own manner prime examples of the potential exhibited by Killset in its new album. That is not to discount any of the album’s other songs. The trio noted here are just the works that this critic felt best represent the band in its new album. All eleven songs together come together to make Know Your Killer a record that any lover of hard rock should hear at least once.
Know Your Killer is a good first effort from Killset. That is because throughout the course of its eleven tracks and forty-eight minute run time the band shows great potential for the future. This is obvious right from the album’s opener ‘My Whole Life.’ In regards to its musical content the song bears a striking resemblance to the Deftones’ hit single ‘My Own Summer (Shove It)’ in the song’s verses. That is thanks in large part to the work of guitarist Dave Comer. The song’s chorus boasts more of a similarity to songs crafted by Breaking Benjamin. The combination of both influences makes the song quite the interesting listen. Front man Luca’s vocal delivery style adds to that comparison to Breaking Benjamin especially through the song’s chorus in which his subject sings about his life essentially being broken and torn apart. His subject speaks to an unnamed figure to “tae my whole life” and that “there’s nothing left inside.” It obviously is hardly the happiest song. But who hasn’t been at that low point in life in which one feels so hopeless? Even this critic has felt that at times. it is part of the human condition. The band is to be commended on being able to translate that mix of emotions that run through a person in such a mental state. That ability to translate such emotions both lyrically and musically shows exactly why this song is one of the album’s key moments in presenting the band’s potential. It is just one example of the band’s potential, too. The much harder rocking ‘Forget You’ is another example of just how much potential the band presents in its new album.
‘My Whole Life’ is a good introduction to Killset and an equally good example of the potential displayed by the band throughout the course of Know Your Killer. It is just one example of what makes this unsigned band’s new album worth at least one listen by lovers of hard rock. On another level ‘Forget You,’ which comes later in the album’s sequencing, is just as good of an example of the band’s potential. It is such a good example of the band’s potential primarily through the attention paid to the manner in which the song builds both musically and lyrically from its opening verse up to its chorus. The song starts soft and somewhat brooding both in regards to its musical and lyrical content and proceeds to build to its point of climax in its chorus in which Luca sings (yes, sings), “It’s over now/Even after everything that we’ve been through/You say/It’s over now even after everything that we’ve been through/It’s over/For the longest/Time we’ve known it’s/Over now even after everything that we’ve been through.” Considering the vitriol expressed in just the chorus one might expect lots of screaming. But Luca doesn’t take that route. Instead he limits the screaming to only two words, “It’s Over.” And even then he only goes that course one time. He doesn’t do it every time. It is a nice change of pace considering how easy it would have been for him to take that easy road. the level of fire and emotion that is exhibited by the time the song reaches its chorus is maintained and even built more as the song progresses through its second verse, bridge and final chorus refrain. By the song’s end, Luca and his band mates–Dave Comer (guitars), Mark Baker (bass), and James “Jas” Dillon (drums)–leave listeners breathless with the pure emotion put on exhibit throughout the song. Considering that the song is clearly about a broken relationship–this is proven in the song’s bridge as Luca’s subject sings, “I gave you everything/Did you even love me/Forget you/Was anything even ever true/Forget you/You’ve taken everything/You took it all and didn’t even love me/Forget you/It wasn’t true/Forget you/We’re through”–that slow boil approach taken by the band here both musically and lyrically shows clearly why ‘Forget You’ is such a strong example of the band’s potential. For that matter it is a clear example of the band’s readiness for the radio already. Even as impressive as this song proves in comparison to Know Your Killer’s other songs, it is still not the last example of the band’s potential presented in the album’s body. ‘A Better Way,’ the album’s penultimate composition, is one more example of the potential exhibited by Killset in its new album.
‘My Whole Life’ and ‘Forget You’ are both good examples in their own right of the potential exhibited by Killset in its latest full-length studio recording Know Your Killer. What makes it such a standout song is its stark stylistic difference from the rest of its counterparts that make up the body of this record. Whereas the album’s other ten songs feature their own share of fire and energy in regards to both their musical and lyrical content, this song takes another route, exhibiting a much mor ereserved, brooding sound and vibe. If ever there was a song on this album that exhibited the influence of the likes of Breaking Bennjamin and other similar acts, this song would be that one composition. Drummer James Dillon and guitarist Dave Comer serve as the foundation for the song that lyrically seems to center on a conversation between a father and his son. The father, it would seem, is feeling a certain amount of regret possibly for having not been there and being the father that he should have been. That could be entirely wrong. but Luca notes in the song that the song’s subject that this was someone older talking to his son, even using the word “son.” That is inferred even more as Luca sings in the song’s opening verse what coudl only be the son talking to his father saying to him, “I know you felt ashamed/Of all that you’ve been through/You tried to hide your face/On that night/Saw you/I know you were embarassed/So deep in your disease/I know you were not perfect/But you were there for me.” As brooding as the song’s musical content sounds, it becomes emotional in a wholy different manner in hearing these words being sung. It’s like the son is saying to his father, “I know you’re only human and that’s okay. You were still there for me despite everything. Thank you.” Considering the song’s chorus in which Luca sings of the supposed father figure singing about drinking, it can be assumed that the disease to which the son refers might be alcoholism. And the father knows it has killed him emotionally, mentally, and physicall, which is why he seems to have such regret. That mix of emotions would account for the depth of the song’s musical content in whole. And both elements together make this song one that is just as solid as any of the album’s other tracks (both those noted and not directly noted). It is one more example of the band’s potential given the right support from the nation’s mainstream rock radio outlets. All eleven tracks together prove Know Your Killer to be, once more, a record that every hard rock fan should hear at least once. In hearing it even just once, those listeners, too will agree that Killset does in fact have potential that deserves to be given at least one chance.
Know Your Killer is a good first record from the men of Killset. It is an album that presents Killset to be a band with great potential; potential that makes the band worth at least one chance by the country’s mainstream rock radio stations. That is exhibited most clearly through the album’s opener ‘My Whole Life,’ the much heavier yet equally emotionally powerful ‘Forget You’ and the deeply moving ‘A Better Way.’ All three songs prove this argument in their own right. They are only three examples of that potential, however. Know Your Killer boasts nine other tracks that listeners may argue are examples in their view, too. That being the case and regardless of which track(s) listeners connect to most, it can be said of Know Your Killer that it is an album in whole that exhbits great potential for Killset; potential that could make it one of the next big names in rock’s mainstream realm. Know Your Killer is available now and can be heard online now via the band’s ReverbNation website at http://www.reverbnation.com/killset. More information on Know Your Killer is available online now via its ReverbNation page and its official Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/killsetofficial.
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