Aurora Tides by Forever Sets The Sun (Self-released)
With the zillions of bands showing up on Facebook, it definitely takes more than just a fan page for people to stand up and take notice. One big thing Forever Sets The Sun from Norman, Oklahoma has going for them is a remarkable chemistry. Mixed with impassioned songs and dynamic musicianship, this collective could go far. Their debut CD Aurora Tides has arrived and it’s certainly well worth a serious look. While influences such as A Day To Remember and The Color Morale come into play, Forever Sets The Sun establishes their own identity not only with compelling original tunes but their clean, thoroughly professional sound.
Kicking off Aurora Tides on a serene yet ominous note is Dawn, immediately transforming into the vibrantly intense Within Obstructions. The breakdowns are fierce and one notices right away the wonderful differences in the clean and screamed vocals. Definitely an opening one-two punch sure to hook the listener in for further musical tides.
Infatuation continues on with a sense of urgency, featuring a section that will make you want to go into the pit for some dance action. Once again the band demonstrates how tremendously tight they are as a unit. This song also features guest appearances by Michael Skaggs and Trevor Tatro of Outline in Color.
The title track Aurora Tides is soaring and haunting with its wistful lyrics and absolutely driving melody. In Stars Reach is sonic and atmospheric, setting up for the adventurous strains of Havens and Harbors.
Threnody is a track of complexity with progressive elements thrown into the mix, showing an impressive side to the band’s resourceful musicianship. Up next is The Distance, a mesmerizing track that approaches stratospheric heights – destined to become a fan favorite when played live. Both these songs of definite high points on the album.
Halls Of Insomnia is sure to leave the listener wide awake with its devastating breakdowns, gang vocals, and insightful lyrics, colliding into the somber sounds of Dusk which closes on the disc on a calming note.
As mentioned before, the combination of screamed and clean vocals on this recording is wildly successful. Mikey Sawyer is one of the most impassioned singers out there today – his solo work was vastly underrated and in Forever Sets The Sun, his emotional delivery is wondrous to behold. On the other side of the spectrum, screamed vocalist Dakota Elam exudes a dead on relentlessness and would certainly be at home in the most brutal of death metal bands. His contribution in Forever Sets The Sun is staggering in its sheer intensity. Together, Sawyer and Elam unleash a lethal fury that should win over fans of all styles of music.
The musicianship found within Forever Sets The Sun is first rate to be sure. Zackery Arvieux and Troy Proctor are standouts on dueling guitars, creating a stunning wall of sound. And there is no denying the rhythm section drives it all home with a vengeance, courtesy of Charles Gafford on bass and DeAngelo Deranek on drums. The sharp and precise production work is credited to See Jay Cochran at Tiger Hart Studios. An impressive debut that should gain the attention of both ardent music fans and fickle industry types. Keep your eyes and ears on Forever Sets The Sun, because they are a rising force that are clearly on the path to success.
(Review by Kenneth Morton)
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