Yearning and Growing: Under My Influence by The Aces Review

“When My Heart Went Volcanic” was one of my favorite releases in 2018, so my anticipation for The Aces next release was highly anticipating. Luckily, I can say that the sophomore release from the pop quartet did not disappoint. “Under My Influence” is a rollercoaster filled with lust, love and independence. Although the sound is similar to their previous album, the lyricism has been massively elevated.

Singles like Daydream and My Phone Is Trying To Kill Me give us the quintessential sound fans expect from the group, filled to the brim with catchy hooks and easy-listening rhythm. The songs are easily the first tracks on summer playlist.

However, I believe that it is in the non-singles are where we see these women actively taking risks. Although many of the previous record’s songs were honest, I believe that The Aces did remain pretty surface-level when diving into the emotions of a feminine relationship. However, in this newer release, we feel them let go.

Songs like “Kelly” and “Can You Do” are both bold strokes discussing the sensual nature of a relationship, a confidence that was definitely missing from the group’s first album. More somber tracks like “All Mean Nothing” and “Cruel” allow the listener to more closely understand the frustration and upset that queer woman can feel when they lose a lover to another gender, a theme that can be hard to find in modern pop. The song “I Can Break Your Heart Too” is a great illustration of the group’s tight lyric ability. Every phrase seems to fit perfectly into the dreamy ballad.

A stand out track for me is the groovy “801.” This song makes a lot of sense when you focus on where the band itself was founded. Smack in the middle of mormon-heavy Provo Utah, this song is an anthem to breaking free. With powerful lyrics like “Leave your church shoes and your Sunday clothes, but bring your guilt and we ‘gon let it go” it’s clear that this track is about the girls tearing away from tradition to become who they truly are. Cristal Ramirez really leans heavily into a lower, grittier vocal range in the track which adds to the emotional weight.

Although a lot of the earlier tracks are heavy, the album ends in a high. “Going Home” is a soft serenade that is perfect for the honeymoon stage of a relationship. The following track, Zillionaire, leaves us a soulful, guitar driven, sugary sweet dedication to love.

The album is definitely a beautiful tribute to yearning and loving even when the world wants your love to remain hidden. Under My Influence stands as a stronger open to the pop music scene, focusing on topics that those in the LGBTQ+community don’t feel like are spoken enough.

Favorite Songs:

801

Going Home

Zillionaire

Stream Under My Influence

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I like music and shouting my opinions. So, I’m sorry in advance.

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Music With Missy

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I like music and shouting my opinions. So, I’m sorry in advance.

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