In Hearts Wake “Incarnation” [Album Review]

Review: Luke Petty 

In Hearts Wake are back with a new album, “Incarnation,” and let me tell you, it’s a beast!  It’s been a while since they dropped an album, and with vocalist Kyle Erich leaving the band, there were questions about what this would sound like. Well, fear not, fellow metalheads, because In Hearts Wake is here to blow your speakers (and maybe your mind).

Forget everything you thought you knew about In Hearts Wake. This album isn’t just chugging guitars and angry screams (though there’s still plenty of that!).  They’ve thrown some electronic stuff in the mix, and it sounds freaking awesome. Imagine “Orphan” as a mosh pit rave – pure headbanging energy with enough catchy bits to get stuck in your head for days. Sure, Kyle’s gone, but the rest of the band has stepped up in a big way. They’re all taking turns on screaming duties, and it brings a whole new vibe. It’s raw, it’s emotional, and it’s gonna make you wanna yell along.

Spitting Nails” hits you like a shot of adrenaline. They crank the intensity up to eleven with blasting drums and electronic loops that sound like they’re straight out of a rave. Lead singer Taylor doesn’t hold back, especially when he unleashes that line about being “so sick of the same old crap.” That’s the message, loud and clear: “Spitting Nails” is here to do things differently.

Remember that first single, “Hollow Bone“? Yeah, that was just a taste of what’s to come. This whole album is a full-on assault on your senses – pure, unadulterated aggression with backing vocals that add a touch of melody without going all soft rock. Think hardcore punk with a killer breakdown that’ll make you wanna mosh like crazy.

Calling back to their roots on “Divination,” the new album throws in some guest singers to spice things up. First on the mic, returning like a conquering hero on track three, is none other than Winston McCall from Parkway Drive! “The Flood” tackles some serious stuff – protecting our planet, especially considering both Taylor and McCall hail from Byron Bay, a place practically made of beaches. These two guys sound like a vocal apocalypse when they team up, and the rest of the band smartly steps back to let them take center stage. It’s a powerful message delivered with maximum impact.

In Hearts Wake throws out the rulebook on this album! Forget the usual “calm before the storm” intro – they dive straight into the deep end with “Orphan.” This is, hands down, the heaviest thing they’ve ever done.  Think the devil himself threw a metal rave in hell – non-stop breakdowns, tempo shifts, and head-crushing riffs that go toe-to-toe with anything deathcore can dish out.  Just when you think you can breathe, it slams back even slower, harsher, and more chaotic than before.  By the time Taylor screams his final chorus, barely hanging onto his vocal cords, your jaw will be on the floor.  This song is a contender for metal song of the year, no question, and might even become a legend in Australian metalcore history.

The guest party keeps rolling with Katio Nagai from Paledusk lending his voice to “Shishigami.” This track fits perfectly with In Hearts Wake’s newer stuff, mixing melodic vocals and some sweet electronic bits with their classic metalcore sound. But wait, there’s more! The guest star parade reaches epic proportions on “Michigama.” Here, we get a whole crew of vocalists joining the party: Chad Ruhlig (For The Fallen Dreams), David Gunn (King 810), Alfonso Civile (Heartsick), and even Don Bauer throws in his two cents at the end. It’s a metal mosh pit of a song, with everyone trading growls, raps, and screams – a total celebration of the music scene!

Transmission” throws it back to In Hearts Wake’s early days, with a sound straight out of 2012. But nostalgia isn’t all this song has going for it. The lyrics pack a serious punch – Jake’s pouring his heart out, trying to reach a lost soul one last time. It’ll either get you moshing like crazy or unleashing a sob-fest. There’s no middle ground! This track is the perfect closer, putting a beautiful bow on top of a fantastic album.

Look, it’s not perfect. Some folks might miss the old-school In Hearts Wake sound, the one that could turn your car into a metal blender. But that doesn’t mean “Incarnation” isn’t killer.  It’s fresh, it’s creative, and the songs are solid.  In short, In Hearts Wake have pulled off a comeback that’s anything but ordinary. This is a must-listen for any metal fan, new or old. Their upcoming tour is going to be one not to miss.