Sound — 9
Sparking most of their popularity from the premiere of their lyric video for the song "Death (Departure)," In Hearts Wake is a metalcore band from Australia. Playing in drop A standard tuning for most of their songs, In Hearts Wake gives a great amount of aggression while still providing the audience with noticeable melodic leads. The screams and cleans are very well balanced. The clean vocalist often gets criticized for his voice but I find it to be fitting either way. There are plenty of vocal appearances on this album which makes it even more enjoyable in my own personal opinion.
Lyrics — 10
In Hearts Wake "popularity" is pretty low, probably for many general reasons. Their songs are not your typical love/hate songs. These compositions usually tell the stories of different arcana. What is arcana? Well it's a little hard to explain but if someone has played the "Persona" video game series, then they should understand (not to say that is where arcana was originally created.) In this review I will only explain the arcana listed in the songs. The songs often tell a narrative of the given arcana, telling us what it represents. 1. "Neverland (The Star)" - The Star generally represents someone who is idolized, a person that others look up to. Sometimes this person takes on the responsibility or motivating others. 2. "Traveller (The Fool)" - The Fool, in simple terms is someone at the beginning of their journey. The Fool is someone who has not walked down a path in life yet, they are able to take any opportunity they desire. 3. "Departure (Death)" - Pretty easy to guess. Death symbolizes the end of the road, the unexpected halt on one's journey. 4. "The Unknown (Strength)" - Strength usually represents someone of leader - like qualities. They can also simply represent someone with superior physical abilities. 5. "Survival (Chariot)" - Chariot is typically a person who is fiercely driven and will try to accomplish a goal, even at great costs. The individual also tends to be short tempered and aggressive. 6. "Inertia (Hermit)" - Hermit depicts someone who is closed off to most and tends to hide whenever possible to avoid social interaction. 7. "B.I.A. (The Hanged Man)" - The Hanged Man is an arcana that represents someone who is forced to make a difficult decision that can completely alter their future. The individual is usually at a failing point in their life when they're forced to make this decision. 8. "Shapeless (Judgement)" - Realizing one's true calling, finding their true meaning in life. 9. "Loreley (The Lovers)" - Easy to figure out, any other detail is that the person it represents tends to thrive on social interaction and have an impressive amount of charisma. 10. "Winterfell (The Tower)" - The Tower usually represents someone who has fallen to grace due to their own mistakes. 11. "Release (The Moon)" - The Moon typically represents one who is physically attuned and clearly shows their faults, often shoving them onto others. I find the lyrics to be very enjoyable to listen and sing along too. I am personally a musician who likes to hear a story in songs and this album does just that.
Overall Impression — 9
I bought this album on iTunes but I would definitely buy the real thing if I had the chance. I love the vocal appearances on this album and one of them came from another band I like. Winston McCall from Parkway Drive. I have not heard of the other vocalists before, therefore I don't know where they originated. Overall, my favorite tracks on the album had to be... - Traveller (The Fool) - Loreley (The Lovers) - Survival (The Chariot) - The Unknown (Strength) - Inertia (The Hermit) - Departure (Death) Garret did a good job on "Inertia," combining he clean vocals with the band's clean vocalist. Chad gave a great contribution to "The Unknown" and Winston left me speechless on "Departure." All in all, I would recommend this for those who like intense and somewhat simplistic metalcore. This album is not for everyone but can be thoroughly enjoyed by many.