KILLSWITCH ENGAGE's JESSE LEACH Is 'Getting Used To' Pandemic-Era Touring But Is Looking Forward To Restrictions 'Going Away'

February 6, 2022

KILLSWITCH ENGAGE singer Jesse Leach, whose band kicked off headlining tour with AUGUST BURNS RED on January 28 at Stage AE in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has recorded a new installment of his YouTube tour blog in which he reflected on the first few shows of the trek. He said in part (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "It's interesting touring this way, when you're unable to be sociable, interact with fans and friends and have guests — those little things that, I think, before this pandemic hit we just took for granted and at times didn't even want them. There are moments when you're on tour, you're just happy to just be quiet and be alone. And I still love that and I cherish it for sure, but now that that element has been taken away, if you will, albeit hopefully temporarily, it makes this a little harder.

"I'm grateful — I truly am — and as I reflect on what's transpired so far, which is these few shows, it just kind of hits me like a ton of bricks, what we're doing out here, sharing a space with people, hopefully entertaining them and hopefully giving them some rest from the everyday grind, from everything that we've been facing these past few years, to be able to gather into a space together and enjoy themselves.

"There was a moment last night at the club," Leach added. "We had these little balconies outside of our dressing where we could watch the show. And I caught a moment, when AUGUST BURNS RED was playing. I was above the crowd watching people pit and dance. There were some people just bouncing up and down, smiling, singing along. You could see their joy. It almost reminded me of kids in a playground, when you see them running around just having fun, not really caring what anyone thought, not trying to look cool. And it kind of hit me, man. I was, like, 'Wow. This is important, what we're doing.' Albeit risky in some people's eyes, 'cause there's always that chance that somebody gets sick. And it would not be good for this tour, which is why we're taking such precautions. And I know not everybody is happy with that in our fanbase. I get it — I do. It's a bummer. But it's, unfortunately, the times we're living in right now. Pulling off a tour without having to cancel or have anyone get sick or tests or any of that stuff, it's really… I guess it's difficult, but I hate to say I'm sort of getting used to it — just staying away from people and being very healthy and being not very sociable. But I do look forward to when this goes away, 'cause one day it's gotta go away — it has to. We have to reclaim our lives and move forward. But time will tell."

Last fall, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE completed a U.S. tour with SLIPKNOT, FEVER 333 and CODE ORANGE as part of the "Knotfest Roadshow". The band also appeared at several key festivals.

In September, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE performed without longtime bassist Mike D'Antonio at the Inkcarceration festival in Mansfield, Ohio after he tested positive for COVID-19. Filling in for him was the band's production manager Josh Mihlek.

KILLSWITCH ENGAGE's latest album, "Atonement", was released in August 2019 via Metal Blade Records in the U.S. and Sony Music Entertainment in the rest of the world. The disc features guest appearances by the band's former lead singer Howard Jones and TESTAMENT frontman Chuck Billy. It marks the band's third full-length release since the return of Leach, who rejoined the group in 2012.

In July 2021, Leach and guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz released the second album from their TIMES OF GRACE project, "Songs Of Loss And Separation", via the band's own imprint label, Wicked Good Records, distributed by ADA Worldwide.

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