WAKING THE SLEEPER
THE 7 DEADLY SINS, PT. 1
655926 Records DK
Released: April 1, 2017
Hailing from Wichita, Kansas, Waking the Sleeper is a metal band lead by vocalist Regina “Raven” Turney (formally of Apparition). The line-up currently consists of keyboard player Shon “Gunnie” Gunderson, lead guitarist Juni Iwasaki, and bassist Ryan Stebb. Raven and Gunnie formed the band in the summer of 2016, and their idea was to form a powerhouse of metal with a unique sound, that comes from utilizing all spectrums of metal. So far the band has released the first part of their debut album, titled “The 7 Deadly Sins”, in the spring of 2017, with the second part set for release later this year.
Waking the Sleeper has been taking the world by storm, and has already performed alongside artists such as Dope, Combichrist, September Mourning, Davey Suicide, Drowning Pool, and more. In addition, they played at the 2017 Rocklahoma alongside the likes of Def Leppard, Soundgarden, The Offspring, The Cult, Jackyl, and Slaughter. Their single, “Wrath” hit number one on Rock Rage Radio and other charts in the USA for and continues to receive good reviews.
Smoke & Mirrors
Changes in Me
Beginning of Sorrows
“The 7 Deadly Sins” is a very ambitious concept album based upon Dante Alighieri’s “Inferno” versus the “Bible”. Now, don’t expect gospel music, choirs and stuff like that, because you will get the exact opposite, as the mixture of energetic guitars, rough and clean vocals, powerful keyboard soundscapes make Waking the Sleeper a very interesting and varied group. Think of a Butcher Babies / Korn mashup with a dash of Evanescence and you’ll get a feel for their music. And the way they address the subject matter is very interesting and different, as I had expected some sort of story-telling type of lyrics, but that’s doesn’t mean I am not enjoying the music.
And, on this rather short first part (running time of 28 minutes) the listener will get aggressive cuts like the rocking and very up-beat “Greed”, and “Envy”, the headbanging, riff heavy “Wrath” but also mellow moments as the piano-driven ballad “Changes in Me” all of which showcase Raven’s intense vocal delivery, and the short but sweet interlude “Beginning of Sorrow”. A definite highlight for me is “Lose Control” because of its deep lyrical content and heavy instrumental, while “Lust” seems to be the odd-one-out as it’s mostly an electronic / industrial piece, reminiscent of The Prodigy.
All in all, “The 7 Deadly Sins” is a great release for a debut band, albeit a bit experimental, with many twists and turns. But don’t let that stand in the way of listening to this album, because sometimes a step or two outside of your comfort zone is a good thing. Looking forward to hearing the second part.
Rating: 8 / 10
Follow the band on-line:
Regina Raven Turney – Lead Vocals/Piano
Juni Iwasaki – Lead Guitar
Ryan Stebb – Bass
Richard Petty – Drums
Shon “Gunnie” Gunderson – Keys and Backing Vocals