We dreamed of save havens
A lack of closure ate us from inside
But our eyelids failed us
And nothing ever changed
Screams a desperate voice in ‘Prolouge: Modest Hopes’, lyrics that capture fear, disappointment and sadness. These are the subjects which are most present on this crushing debut album of OAK.
OAK is a young band based in Jönköping, Sweden that plays a hybrid of dark and spastic hardcore/mathcore like Converge and Botch, and screamo a la Orchid and Pg. 99. 30 minutes of mayhem in its purest form, and like you probably haven’t heard for a very long time. Noisy production combined with vicious screams, and killer breakdowns.
OAK starts out quite traditional with the earlier mentioned ‘Modest Hopes’, but experimentation already kicks in with ‘Dust’. The main riff sounds like it was used out of a 90’s Swedish death metal song. ‘Roots’ is the most intense track on this album, a mid-tempo post-hardcore experience with lyrics about a fugitive.
This album contains three parts that each feature three songs. While there isn’t a particular concept or sound to be found in these different parts, it’s still a nice way to cut up OAK. Chapter II for example ends with a nice and slow instrumental piano/string track. Chapter III contains the most wonderful work of this whole album. ‘The World’, which only contains some guitar chords and emotional screams on its first half, only to explode in its second. ‘Each Other’ and ‘Ourselves’ form a great ending fort his album with everything that this band stands for combined: Polyritmic riffs, slow breakdowns, amazing screams and even some acoustic guitars.
OAK have come a long way since their debut EP in 2011, and are probably only getting better. This album is downloadable for a ‘pay what you want’ price over at their BandCamp, vinyl is handled by Woodhammer Entertainment and HoboRec. So there is no reason for you to NOT check this album out.
OAK is touring Europe this summer together with their peers of murderofcrows, we highly recommend to go to a show! Dates here.
Track List – OAK:
1. Prolouge: Modest Hopes
2. Chapter I: Torn Down/Tearing Down
3. Chapter I: Dust
4. Chapter I: Roots
5. Chapter II: Ash
6. Chapter II: Haze
7. Chapter II: Galanty Shows
8. Chapter III: The World
9. Chapter III: Each Other
10. Chapter III: Ourselves
Written by Niels Koster