My Silent Wake – Acoustic Collection


Formed in Spring of 2005, after the split of death/doom metal band Ashen Mortality, this British Gothic death/doom metal band formed by ex-Ashen Mortality co – founder Ian Arkley and other ex Ashen Mortality members Jasen Whyte and Andi Lee play a brand of death and doom metal that have  folk, medieval music and progressive/ psychedelic rock infused in its DNA.

Though expressively not a Christian band, some of their lyrical themes do deal with ideas of faith and loss of faith, through a deeply personal interaction, more on a universal platform. This compilation of acoustic songs comes with a My Silent Wake band photo and a personal, signed, message from Ian Arkley, and is limited to 100 hand-numbered copies. The “acoustic collection” hit the shelves in September 2012. The cd cover artwork was done by Jan Radim Rudolph Scholaster whilst all other artwork has been credited to Ian Arkley. Their wide range of influences include such bands as Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride, Trouble, Celtic Frost and Black Sabbath.

The production quality is clear and clean allowing way for the instruments to bellow forth, casting the scene for a rather hauntingly inspiring Gothic ambiance, filled with artistic beauty. The opening track, “Devoid of light” is a strong representation of what you can expect through the album. It has strong Gothic vocals by Ian Arkley, fuelld by emotionally filled music that transcends across multiple genre’s, artistically allowing them to have a rather unique blend, or flavour of Gothic indulgence. The variety of instrumentation, like ebow, clarinet, recorder, cello and zither is also a welcoming contribution to the overall strength of the album. It is this kind of instrumental diversity that adds to the character and credibility of the songs, allowing it to move beyond the usual Gothic closet. Add to that the certain sombre moodiness that encompasses the album, aptly represented by such songs as “Fallen leaves”, “In the Glow of the Autumn Sun” and “Storm”, and you get an album that enchants with excellence. I found “NDE” was overly long and uninteresting and boring. “Revolution” brings some sun shine to the album with its catchy melody and technical prowess. This song captured my heart and provided the most enjoyable listening experience out of all the tracks on the album for myself.

Technically the music overshadows the vocals. Ian Arkley’s vocal performance is not the best I have heard in this genre, but it does contribute and work well alongside the overall mystical enchantment of the album. Artistically, the band clearly has some good ideas that does produce an album that reflects a solid Folk/Gothic atmosphere. Kate Hamilton is an amazingly talented individual, and her skill and contribution are one of the highlights throughout the entirety of this release. The album is a lengthy set with 16 tracks, and adding the combination that some of the songs are similar, my attention unfortunately waned off a bit towards the end.  However, if you are a penny for a pound sort of folk, then this album will not disappoint.

Rating: 7/10

Review by: Donovan de Necker

1 Revolution
2 Pendulum
3 The Mist
4 The Anatomy Of Melancholy
5 Devoid Of Light [Songwriter – James Moore]
6 Look Beyond The Flesh, Look Beyond The Mind
8 To Bid Farewell
9 Two Gods [Songwriter – Martin Bowes]
10 In The Glow Of The Autumn Sun
11 Shadow Reprise (2011)
12 Oceans Of Time
13 Fallen Leaves
14 Dying
15 Shadow Reprise
16 Storm

My Silent Wake, EP [2005]
Shadow Of Sorrow, Full-length [2006]
The Anatomy of Melancholy, Full-length [2007]
Sturm/Storm Promo DVD, DVD [2007]
A Garland of Tears, Full-length [2008]
Black Lights & Silent Roads, Split [2010]
IV Et Lux Perpetua, Full-length [2010]
Rare and Live Recordings. Vol.1, Compilation [2011]
Acoustic Collection, Compilation [2012]

MSW members past & present
appearing on this compilation:

Ian Arkley
Kate Hamilton
Andi Lee
Jasen White
Steve Allan
Alan Southorn

Record Label: Selfreleased, Sept. 2012 [Limited to 100 hand-numbered copies]

Weblinks: Website / Facebook / Reverbnation / Twitter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts