Awake The Sun certainly seems to have some of those talented musicians, blessed with technical skills and complex songwriting abilities. This Italian act was formed by members of avant-garde gothic act Ensoph. With this new project, they wanted to add a personal touch to doom metal by adding influences from post-rock, progressive metal and industrial. In fact, I didn't even think about doom metal at all when I listened to opening track 'No Sun'.
What I heard was a bit of Opeth, a hint of Fear Factory and some Dream Theater, combined with the grandeur of present-day arena rock. Gradually, the doom elements sink in, of course mostly in the tempo. Suddenly flashes of Ghost Brigade and My Dying Bride come shining through. However, halfway through 'The Withering', I'm thinking "to hell with all those genres, let's just sit back and enjoy the hell out of this song".
That enjoyment lasts for the remainder of this album. It grows, it alternates, it changes and it evolves. At one point I'm even thinking about Diary Of Dreams meets Linkin Park. I have no idea why, perhaps it's because of the combination of electronics and grinding guitars, or maybe because of those epic vocals, combined with gloomy gothic soundscapes. All I know is that I really like it.
In a way, some of the songs sound like an update for old Moonspell or Tiamat songs. 'Empire' has the same dark atmosphere, the same immersive tempo and the similar metal influences. It just sounds more present day than those classics. Other names that come to mind are Pain, Lacuna Coil, Samael, Katatonia, Swallow The Sun and The Silverblack. Confusing? Yeah, a bit. Recommended? Yeah, a lot!