TIMES OF GRACE, the collaborative project featuring KILLSWITCH ENGAGE members Jesse Leach (vocals) and Adam Dutkiewicz (guitar),will release its long-awaited sophomore album, "Songs Of Loss And Separation", on July 16. The disc's first single, "The Burden Of Belief", will arrive tomorrow (Friday, May 21). A short preview of the track is available below.
"Songs Of Loss And Separation" track listing:
01. The Burden Of Belief
02. Mend You
04. Far From Heavenless
05. Bleed Me
08. To Carry The Weight
Last December, Leach said that he and Dutkiewicz were "finalizing" things for the new record's release. He also blamed the album's delay on the fact that 2020 was "a shitshow," in part due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. "We just wanna make sure it comes out properly — the way that we want it to be presented, and have some good visual ideas and some good artwork," he explained. "And we found a good home at a label. So all of that is wrapping up."
Back in August, Dutkiewicz told the Metal Blade Live Series that he was "really excited" about the new TIMES OF GRACE material. "There's some pretty mellow vibes on that record, for sure," he said. "It's definitely one of the darkest things I've ever written topically."
In July, Leach told the "BREWtally Speaking Podcast" that the new TIMES OF GRACE album is "leaps and bounds better [than 2011's 'The Hymn Of A Broken Man']. It's more creative, it's more genuine, I feel," he said. "I feel like there was definitely a bleed-in of KILLSWITCH influence on that first record, and how could there not be, with me and Adam working together. And I feel like this new record sort of pulls away from that and really sort of defines us and our sound as TIMES OF GRACE, where I listen back to 'Live In Love' [from the first TIMES OF GRACE album] and certain songs like that, and you can hear the KILLSWITCH influence. And that's cool, and fans, I'm sure, appreciated that, but I'm very happy to pull away from that and do something different for this new record."
Leach went on to speak in more detail about TIMES OF GRACE's musical progression and the band's plans to release a full-length album and a separate EP.
"It's a mixed bag [of musical styles]," he told "BREWtally Speaking Podcast". "There's definitely some of that sort of bluesy [stuff] — definitely a lot of blues, I should say. But it comes in different forms. I'd say there's a mixture of a touch of some stoner vibes going on there. There's definitely a touch of, like, I guess the term would be 'post metal,' atmospheric metal — guitars with a lot of delay and space with big, heavy bass and slow-moving stuff. There's more rock and roll, more indie rock. And there's still traces of the metal that we're known for here and there."
He continued: "I think with the direction we're heading in, and why there's gonna be two releases, this first release we wanted to make sure it sort of didn't really have any of that heavy KILLSWITCH-y vibe to it. So the first record is going to be what I feel is our signature sound that we've sort of embraced, and it just kind of happened through Adam's writing. And then the EP will be a little bit more of the metal that you have come to know and reflect on the first record. So it's a real mixed bag. And I'm glad to say I don't think you can really put a genre on us because of that. We'll see. I'm sure people are gonna still call it metalcore. I don't even know what the fuck that term means anymore. But I'm happy to say that I think that we are no longer going to be called that style of music, because I think we're more of a heavy metal/rock band, if you will."
TIMES OF GRACE entered Signature Sound studio in San Diego, California in late 2017 to begin recording material for its new LP. Sitting behind the drum kit during the sessions was Dan Gluszak, who previously played drums for TIMES OF GRACE on tour and has since been named an official member of the band.
"The Hymn Of A Broken Man" was released in January 2011 via Roadrunner Records. The CD sold around 10,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 44 on The Billboard 200 chart.
Dutkiewicz and Leach originally worked together on KILLSWITCH ENGAGE's benchmark album, 2002's "Alive Or Just Breathing". That record has become definitive for an entire generation of American metal, with Leach's voice and uplifting lyrics serving as one of the key elements that propelled the album to "modern classic" status. Leach left KILLSWITCH ENGAGE shortly after "Alive Or Just Breathing"'s release but rejoined the group in early 2012 following the departure of his replacement, Howard Jones.