Ascent is a husband/wife duo based in California who have been working hard to get their music to the masses. They’re steadily carving out their corner of the music industry. Fans of Blondie, Pat Benatar and those who listen to the more rockin’ side of things should pay attention because you may have just found your new favorite indie band.
Ascent – Music Review
The duo has a great sound overall. I’ll dive into some more technical critiques in a second, but the music is growing on me and I particularly like the genre. I’m always a sucker for a great guitar lick. Bruce Baldwin has no shortage of riffs that’s for sure! “Beacon Eleven” is one such example of a tune with some catchy guitar moments. Bruce apparently is very picky with all the instrument parts and has complete control over the music, and this is not always a bad thing when trying to realize the complete vision.
“Bruce’s obsessive approach to writing and recording meant that he would scare off band-mates over the years. His desire to have all instrument parts played just as he envisioned eventually led to the live-looping approach Ascent employs.” (bio snippet)
In “Beacon Eleven” there is sort of a jerky motion of rhythms however. I appreciate the groove but could go for some more straight up groove parts in particularly when Christina is singing. I tend to lean more towards tunes like “Last Night.” Christina’s vocals floating atop of a solid groove is fun and easy to listen to. I do however feel that Christina’s vocals are sometimes a little to soft. Not in volume but in grit, perhaps she is holding back a bit. She has a very smooth tone and I like it, but it seems that a little more attitude may be fitting. Overall “Last Night” I think is a great tune!
In the intro for “Bleed Like This” I can hear some of the attitude I was looking for! As the song progresses I can’t hear it as much but it’s definitely in there! I think that if she focuses a little bit on the raw side of her vocals it could maybe be something really cool. Like I said before, Christina’s voice has a soft tone and her vibrato is very nice. The keyboards add to the “Blondie-ness” of their sound. Christina’s vocals really remind me of Debbie Harry and I can’t get that out of my head! I’m a little disappointed to read that the duo doesn’t perform with a live band because the instrumentation as far as the guitars and drums in particular are really good.
“Don’t Make Me” is probably one of my favorite tunes I’ve heard of these two fine artists. I don’t know, there’s just something about it that clicks for me more than the other tunes overall. The instrumentation works well together and it seems to just stick in my head more than others. Again, the guitar riffs and solos are hot and ready! Christina’s vocals are even closer to the sound I was talking about earlier. I especially like the “Hey Hey Hey” parts in the chorus. I think the breaks where Christina’s vocals bring it back in over the bluesy guitar lick is awesome! One last note about this tune, I’m thinking some more backing harmonies would really spice this one up even more!
I’m curious to know what YOU think about the band Ascent. Get in touch with us and them on social media and let Bruce and Christina know that you heard their music here on Indie Music Plus! As always, thank you for reading and continuing to support indie music of all genres!