Released simultaneously with a European vinyl acoustic album titled Acoustic Collection, Silver Under Midnight is a CD release from My Silent Wake. The CD features nine songs of heavy and atmospheric music that is hard to neatly fit under one genre tag.
While they definitely play their own style of doom, there is much more to it than just Sabbath chords and slow tempos. My Silent Wake’s frontman Ian Arkley combines elements of Gothic, folk and ambient music as well.
Joining Ian in the studio are drummer Mark Henry and Kate Hamilton, who performs bass and dulcimer. Arkley brings a mixture of guttural and clean vocals to the mix, as well as all guitars and some assorted keyboards and percussion.
This album is all about mood. It weaves a musical tapestry that is dark and atmospheric. The album opens with a brief instrumental that acts as an introduction to the brutally heavy “Destroyer.” The song features some heavy Sabbath-inspired riffs, but the other influences are woven into the song as well, creating a roller coaster of emotions as the eight-minute song rolls along.
From this song on, the roller coaster of emotions continues to go up and down from the pummeling heavy metal of “Oblivion” to the epic 14-minute opus that closes out the album. (“Oblivion” actually has a feel not unlike Seventh Angel’s Lament for the Weary.)
Much like the music, the lyrics are a myriad of thoughts, making observations of humanity and the human condition. It makes for some thought-provoking moments.
Coupled with outstanding production that includes beefy guitar tones and audible bass guitar, Silver Under Midnight may very well be My Silent Wake’s finest moment yet. It’s a piece of musical art that cannot be broken down into singles and songs.
Each song is as important as the next in painting the picture. Silver Under Midnight is not just a doom metal album, it’s a musical journey.