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Dark Forest: The Awakening

Put aside any preconceptions you may have regarding the name of this the UK band, Dark Forest aren't a black metal group as nothing is sinister in this forest. This band actually play traditional or as sometimes reffered to as "true" or "classic" heavy metal, Dark Forest also take on other heavy styles like power metal. Appearing on the latest Dark Forest release The Awakening which is also their third album are new vocalist Josh Winnard and guitarist Pat Jenkins.

Part of Percy Bysshe Shelley's poem " The Mask of Anarchy" is used in the introduction to the opening track, which gets you enthused for what's to follow. In my opinion I do feel this intro works better leading into track two "Sacred Signs" with its faster pace. Anyway enough of that songs like "The Awakening", "Sacred Signs" and "Penda's Fen" are like an exciting metal cocktail in part reminiscent of metal titans Iron Maiden with cool harmonious dual guitar leads, strong vocals and rock solid drumming. The beginning of "Turning Of The Tide" is a nice surprise as Dark Forest show a different side with a heavy furious double kick driven section that resurfaces later on. Dark Forest shift speeds on "Rise Like Lions", "Immortal Remains" has another cool introduction and solos, the guitar on this album is certainly a feature. "Secret Commonwealth" is a traditional rocker and a good one at that, Dark Forest merges a lively galloping feel for "The Last Season". Saving the longest track for last as Dark Forest close off the album with "Sons Of England" a fitting uplifting conclusion to The Awakening.

The Awakening may not be a breath of fresh air, but really that's not an issue. The Awakening has an appealing classic metal style that many metal fans will totally dig.

Track Listing
1. The Awakening
2. Sacred Signs
3. Penda's Fen
4. Turning Of The Tide
5. Rise Like Lions
6. Immortal Remains
7. Secret Commonwealth
8. The Last Season
9. Sons Of England

Added: February 7th 2014
Reviewer: Scott Jessup
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Language: english

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