Awake At Last to rock Tom's Bullpen on April 20.
Dover rock band Awake At Last has been building a fanbase out of state the last couple of years, drawing crowds in places like Massachusetts and New York City.
The rock quintet has gigged so much in the Big Apple it was named one of NYC’s rising bands to watch in an article by Alternative Press, a news outlet covering underground and alternative bands.
A band gaining followers outside of its home state is important in helping it grow into a national act. But the guys in Awake At Last haven’t forgot where they come from.
They’re looking forward to seeing old faces from the Capital City at their show at Tom’s Bullpen on Wednesday, featuring three supporting acts. The gig is for ages 21 or older.
“The peeps who have been there from the beginning will show back up,” lead singer Vincent Torres said. “All the ones who have families, they’ll still come when we’re at Tom’s Bullpen, because it’s local.”
Jerry Gray from Magnolia has been a diehard fan since 2011. He’s often photographed the group at local concerts.
“I’m extremely excited for the April 20th show,” said Gray. “I never miss them at Tom’s Bullpen.”
Bandmate Eric Blackway said playing Tom’s Bullpen regularly is great because there’s no place like home.
“It’s a hometown crowd that we can go to and play to,” the lead guitarist said. “It has a hometown feel we like to come back to.”
Awake At Last's concert will include tunes from the band's 2014 EP, “King of the World.”
Although the gang plans to release a new EP in August, fans likely won’t hear new music at Wednesday's show because “those songs are still very much in the developmental phase,” said Torres of Smyrna.
Awake At Last will hit the studio to record its new EP in early June. The group is aiming for a more theatrical sound on this record.
“We’re going to be using symphonic orchestra instruments and stuff like that,” Torres said. “We’ll be creating the same new age theatrics that you hear in modern pop music. But we’ll do it using older methods. Rather than having a cool electro beat, we’ll have cool violin thingies that kick in.”
Major bands like Famous Last Words and Get Scared are popular for having a similar sound. So Awake At Last plans to create some post-symphonic tunes that will distinguish itself from the pack.
“We’re figuring out a way to do it our own way,” Blackway said. “It’s going to give us our niche.
It’s a dream for many bands to get featured in Alternative Press. Hence, Torres and Blackway were pleasantly surprised when they were recognized by the national publication.
“One of our friends, who’s a fan of ours, is a contributing writer and she wrote [the story]. So we ended up in the magazine,” Torres said. “We didn’t tell her to do it. She did it on her own accord, which was really awesome and meant a lot.”
Blackway was honored.
“It’s a milestone,” the Dover resident said. “As a self-managed band, it’s not easy to pull off. It’s definitely a sense of accomplishment in that.”
‘Ready to dive in’
Over the last couple of years Awake At Last has been venturing further out of the Small Wonder, getting booked at venues in West Virginia, Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky, NYC, Ohio and other states.
With the exception of NYC and West Virginia, the band will hit those states again, plus Pennsylvania, on a mini tour in mid-May.
After five years, Torres and Blackway believe their rock band is on the cusp of becoming a national success.
“I feel like we’re at a point now with the lineup that we’re ready to dive in and just let it become what we do [full time],” Torres said.
Gray is confident Awake At Last would thrive at the next level.
“It would mean everything to me if they were to emerge nationally,” he said. “They definitely got the talent to make it.”
IF YOU GO
WHAT Awake At Last with guests 24 Hour, Forever Isn’t Long Enough and Chill and the Rabbits
WHEN 7 p.m., April 20
WHERE Tom’s Bullpen, 1035 Walker Road, Dover
INFO Visit Awake At Last on Facebook or call 724-5199