The Awakening is the first track on the Iluminative EP of the same title, and it showcases a bold sound. There are hints of rap, R&B and grime that combine to create something new and unique. There are so many things that are occurring at one time during this introductory track, but Iluminative is talented enough to turn these disparate tacks and approaches into a cohesive and unified sound. Guides, the second track showcases a much more stripped-down flow.
There is a front-forward sound that allows listeners to focus purely on the rap flow or the backing instrumentation. The haunting choral sound that is interspersed through points of Guides establishes this effort as considerably different from the EP’s first salvo, giving listeners the momentum that they need to continue onwards on The Awakening. The disc’s third track is Enlightenment and it showcases a wholly different set of styles that are given highlighting. The flow of Iluminative during this track is top-notch, provided a bit of additional oomph through the rising and falling action of the synths that establish the backdrop for this single. Hints of Linkin Park can be heard in the bit of rock that is incorporated with the electronic/industrial sound of the arrangements.
Third Eye is the penultimate track on The Awakening, and it may be our favorite effort on the album. The bombastic sound of the beat on this effort is unparalleled on The Awakening, while the intricate rap flow here links together Eminem, MC Chris and Tech N9ne into something absolutely refreshing. The EP concludes with Illumination, a track that feels destined for the dance floor. There is a bit more of a dance sound to this cut, making the song equally at home on rap and electronic radio stations. A full, smart sort of EP – we hope to hear more from Iluminative in the future.