Time– This one begins with a simple guitar and Ashton over the top. Shortly, clear distinct guitar notes come in over Ashton’s acoustic guitar. Keyboards join for the chorus with some nice personification as the night conspires against us. I like how Ashton uses forces outside of ourselves again. This one got away from me a bit. Just as I felt like I was catching on, it ended. Not a bad song, just didn’t grab me like the others.
Disappear– Disappear begins with a catchy acoustic guitar strum and light percussion. Instruments kick in, including a deep drum beat, as Ashton’s voice picks up as he tells the story. Keyboards are added as the song crescendos. I really like the way that it builds from a simple guitar to a more highly produced entry. Ashton really stretches his vocal range here as well.
Soon It Will Be Morning– Ashton begins over ambient music. His voice holds the melody. He catches me quickly with “her garden full of stars” and from there delivers elegant poetry with perfect word choice and imagery that emblazons the song in your mind. “I could be the kite in the stormy skies of Mars, I’d dance like one possessed by the alchemy of night. And Soon It Will be Morning.” Come on, what kind of sorcery is this? Absolutely stunning!
Heroes: There isn’t much to be said about this. As Ashton said in his Facebook performance, this isn’t here to improve on a classic. It’s more of an homage to Bowie. It is beautiful and I think Bowie would be proud.
Awake: Awake begins with a haunting piano melody, and then winter enters. Winter is ruthless as an adversary that holds us back. “Dream yourself awake.” At this point, the music changes, a really slick drum beat enters, followed by some 80s inspired post punk guitar. This song is ambitious in that the music serves the song more here than on any other track. Eventually, the song returns to the simple piano. I love the idea that we can get out of these situations. Winter doesn’t have to win.
Icicles: This one begins with a lovely guitar melody. Ashton begins with a visit to a fortune teller. Apparently directionless, trying to find his way. Again, winter is the antagonist here. Icicles are winters tears, sharpened. For the speaker it’s a reminder of heights he will not achieve. He screams for help, but realizes, perhaps in those moments of silence, that there is hope, a glow in the darkness. It reminds me of Robert Frost, Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening. All seems lost for he has miles to go before he sleeps, but there is sleep and rest at the end. Although Icicles is negative and imposing in many ways, icicles eventually melt and the speaker will find his way home.
Conclusion: This is a truly intimate record from Mr. Nyte. Nature, time- those things out of our control are at work throughout the entire album. Nature or time can be our friend, or they could work against us. I guess in the end, it’s up to us. Are we listening or just talking into the wind. Like a wise poet, Ashton Nyte leaves that up to us. As for the album, he left nothing on the table. This is a brilliant outing speaks directly to us if we listen.
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