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In the fall of 1988 Mike Botello set out on a solo project that prompted the search of a quality skilled lead guitarist. In this process, Botello ran into long time acquaintance Jesse Villegas. After meeting with Villegas, the pair found themselves working together and completed Botello’s first solo “demo” project. Soon after, Botello was accepted in the SxSW music conference in Austin, TX in the spring of 1989, which led to finding drummer Robert Moreno a.k.a. Rob Battalion and a string of bass players. With a temporary bassist and little rehearsal time plus some sound issues the showcase was, short of being a success. With the future of the project on the line and no permanent bassist, Botello & Villegas began writing together. Now with Botello on the bass the two decided to move from a solo project to a band effort. Thus, Awake was formed.
With the collaborative efforts between Villegas/Botello and now with Rob Battalion in full force, the trio began preparing toward their first full length Album titled ”Spiritual Warfare”. During the summer of 89 thru the spring of 90 Awake achieved much success in local and regional venues with their intricate and progressive style not commonly found with your typical standard rock band of the time. Very quickly the group found themselves as an opening act for various groups such as Vengeance Rising, Paradox, Deliverance, Kings X, and more just to name a few. But as quickly as things progressed Awake found themselves parting ways at the eve of their debut release.
With the band no longer together their album “Spiritual Warfare” like the group, achieved quick success with demands for a follow up release and shows that could not be fulfilled. In a ditch effort Villegas & Botello tried to revise Awake in 1991 with drummer John Pace but with no success. Although Awake was not able to continue as a band, the now classic 1990 debut release of “Spiritual Warfare” lives on through the digitally re-mastered re-release on compact disc. The CD offers a bonus track of a late 92 rehearsal with drummer John Pace along with the original demo recorded version of “See Me Now” with Mike Botello on drums and on rhythm electric/acoustic guitar ending with the sounds of the very last Awake concert.
The Awake era: 1988-1990,1991-92.