Killswitch Engage (sometimes shortened to KsE or just Killswitch) was formed in 1998. After the breakup of Overcast, bassist Mike D'Antonio joined up with former Aftershock members Adam Dutkiewitz and Joel Stroetzela, along with Jesse Leach from Nothing Stays Gold. Killswitch Engage got their start in 1999 opening for In Flames while on tour with Steve Young and Shadows Fall. Representatives from Ferret Music were present at one of the concerts and signed Killswitch Engage to their label.
Killswitch Engage's self-titled debut album was released in June of 2000. While Killswitch Engage wasn't much of a financial success, the album began garnering interest in the underground scene and eventually led to a record deal with Roadrunner Records. The next Killswitch Engage album, Alive or Just Breathing (2002), reached number 37 on the Billboard Heatseeker Chart. Alive was described by Kevin Boyce of CMJ New Music Report as "more addictive than crack cocaine that's been smothered in caffeine and nicotine and drenched with chocolate."
The next Killswitch Engage album, The End of Heartache (2004), debuted at number 21 on the Billboard Top 200 chart and was certified gold in December of 2007. Killswitch Engage also received a Grammy nomination for this album. The latest Killswitch Engage album, As Daylight Dies (2006), has sold over 300,000 copies. Vocalist Howard Jones describes Daylight as "a total creative explosion."