Rwake: Voices of Omens

Rwake - Voices of OmensRwake plays the kind of music that makes babies cry. They’re one of the many reasons that there will always be clusters of people across America who believe that metal has the power to turn “normal” kids into blood-thirsty demons.

This incredibly dark five-piece hails from Arkansas, the homeland of Wal-Mart, Bill Clinton, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Rwake certainly aren’t “two little girls from Little Rock,” (although that’s a cover waiting to happen), probably don’t care if you think they inhale or not, and are unapologetically not “family friendly.”

With a husband and wife team on vocals, Rwake attacks with achingly slow doom that creeps along like a nest of spiders crawling through an air duct, down a wall, and into a bed where an unsuspecting victim peacefully sleeps.

It’s not all fun and games, though. Some parts drag a bit, even for doom, and without an appreciation for ’80s metal or lyrics about 666 (which, overall, I don’t have), listening can be a trying experience. The over-processed vocals and banshee like wails are cool at first, but sound a bit like fingernails after an extended period of time.

The record gets progressively more powerful and more engaging through the tracks, cumulating in “The Lure Of Light.” “Inverted Overtures” is a monster of a song with all the weight and intensity of a colossal wrecking ball, and “Leviticus” is likewise a force to be reckoned with. Whatever you do, don’t play this for the faint of heart.

– Jamie Ludwig
Rwake (Relapse Records)