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OAK - OAK EP

  by Peter Allison

published: 26 / 8 / 2009



OAK - OAK EP
Label: Oak
Format: CDS

intro

Outstanding new EP from Kidderminsiter-based industrial metal act OAK, whose debut album is out later this year


It has been a worrying time for the industrial-metal scene of late. Rammstein have seemingly vanished from the metaphorical radar, Marilyn Manson has released his two most disappointing albums to date, and Nine Inch Nails recently announced their intent to embark upon an indefinite hiatus. Fear not, for Kidderminster-based four-piece OAK are on the horizon. Opening with 'Torn', the first line is softly sung by lead vocalist Kleon before exploding into a perfect fusion of industrial-metal. The snarling lyrics smoothly transform into explosions of drums and guitar, with neither overwhelming the other. 'Torn' is a fantastic dance-floor filling track that I never tire of listening to, and is my favourite track from the EP. 'Damage Control' is the second track, a more electronica inspired song that still maintains OAK’s unique sound of Kleon’s excellent vocals enmeshed within Drew’s thunderous drumming and the roar of Neo’s and Cardinal’s fantastic guitar work. The EP’s third track is 'Twisted'. It opens melodically with Kleon softly singing the first lines, whereupon Cardinal, Neo, and Drew kick in with drums and guitars synching perfectly together to form what is OAK’s signature sound. An almost silent monologue in the centre pauses the music before exploding once more into action. Their final track is 'My Secret Sophia', which explores an excellent fusion of industrial and techno, The song, perhaps justifiably, concludes with Kleon’s final declaration of “You keep me alive”. If I had to offer a criticism of the EP, it would have to be the silent moment in 'Twisted' disrupting the EP’s overall flow. This is only a minor point, because the CD is just so good. It is difficult to identify OAK’s greatest strength, for they all work extremely well together. Kleon is an impressively versatile vocalist, while Drew’s drumming and Neo’s bass form a solid core to their music, and Cardinal employs impressively aggressive guitars. Their lyric writing is equally exceptional, displaying not only a solid structure and lyrical narrative, but a distinct rhythm that meshes perfectly with the music. Despite being unsigned, OAK have an incredibly polished finish, with an undeniably engaging sound to their music. Drawing elements from industrial, metal, electronica, and techno-trance, OAK have developed a sound and structure that is uniquely theirs. They also employ an elegant structure to their music, and, while I have seen this done before, I have never seen it performed so excellently. This is simply a fantastic example of what OAK can offer.I cannot wait to listen to the promised album later this year.



Track Listing:-



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interviews


Interview (2009)
OAK - Interview
Peter Allison speaks to Kidderminster-based industrial-metal group OAK about the hard-hitting effects of the recession on their band and their forthcoming debut album


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