Alternate rockers from Gold coast of Brisbane, Awaken I am, are set to release their sophomore album, “Blind Love” on the 29th of September under Victory records. Awaken I am, raised to fame when their debut album “Shields and Crowns” reached the #3 spot on I-tunes Metal chart. Having toured with Chiodos, The Devil Wears Prada and Emarosa in the past, the band made headlines when they appeared at the So What Festival in Dallas. Predominant in the Australian scene, the band bagged a worldwide deal with Victory records at the end 2016.
Right at the outset the band’s sound is very different from what I’ve heard over the years, a far cry from the traditional alt-Rock. The band however takes a bold step while shaping its music as it pushes itself to the realms of Pop-Rock. The songs have upbeat soundscapes, even though the songs speak of struggles with ones past. Be it for the staccato guitar riffs that fill up the songs, or the electronic elements, the songs do get pretty catchy at the chorus. Adam has an impressive vocal range and showcases his style as he juggles rap, with an occasional falsetto and ties it up beautifully with his melodies on the choruses.
The album opens up with “Walk my way”, which exuberates with a radiant power and sooth out as a gush of emotions mellows it down. “Red wine regret” sounds funky, whereas “Blind Love” laden with heavy guitar chugs helps out to deliver a power chorus. Now with “The chase” we witness some impressive song-writing, the band drops a bomb on the melody here. The tempo that the song takes is perfect and sets out a strong candidate for the albums’ ballad, along with “Distance, Distance”.
“Be Still”, an instrumental song, sounds raw and refreshing with its unique soundscape and gorgeous notes on the traditional Chinese Pipa. With songs like “Naïve”, “Hindsight” and “Black dreams” which are predominantly vocal driven a formulaic sets in. The songs don’t exhilarate as much as its predecessors as electronica dents the heaviness.
The album closes out with “Wolves” which has Adam reaching out high pitched notes and giving the album an upbeat end.
Production – The song are produced with all the tones in place, and all the instruments get their fair share in the limelight.
Conclusion – A decent attempt for their sophomore record, and a long way to go musically. However relying a lot on ambient sounds and electronic elements takes the Rock out of the songs.
Written by: Ankit Sood
01. Walk My Way
02. Red Wine Regret
03. Blind Love
04. The Chase
05. Black Dreams
06. Be Still
09. Distance, Distance
Adam Douglas – Vocals
Luke McKenzie – Drums
Ned Jankovic – Guitar
Connor Oakley – Guitar
Ryan Oxford – Bass
Record Label: Victory Records, Sept. 2017
Video below: ‘Slumber’
Video (audio) for ‘Wolves’
Video for ‘Blind Love’