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The Critics Corner: Ashlyne Huff

ashlynehuff_150 Name: "Ashlyne Huff"

Label: Liquid Digital Media

Release Date: May 11th, 2010

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Written by: Stephanie Mora, Staff Writer, Pacific/Southwest Region

Have you heard of Ashlyne Huff? If your answer to that question right now is "no," that is all about to change. Fresh off of opening for successful pop/rock act Honor Society on their Here Comes Trouble Tour, this up and coming singer/songwriter just released her debut self-titled album on May 11th, 2010. If you attended any of the Here Comes Trouble shows, you know that Ashlyne was absolutely ecstatic about her album release, and she had every reason to be. Her album entitled, Ashlyne Huff showcases her strong vocal talent and veteran song-writing abilities, and with only 6 tracks on the album, it will leave you wanting to hear more.

The album begins with Huff’s most popular song and single, "Heart of Gold." This track is featured on the Now That’s What I Call Music: 33 compilation album and you can  find the music video right here on Musiqtone.com. At first listen, "Heart of Gold" is an instantly catchy song that is bound to get stuck in your head. With unique guitar rhythms and a clap driven drum beat, you will want to clap your hands, tap your foot, nod your head, and dance around your room all at the same time. The track is just as strong lyrically as it is musically. With lyrics like, "Who am I to tell you what to do, you’re not the type to do what you’re told, let me tell you you’re gonna miss this heart of gold," girls everywhere will want this to be their anthem they scream at the top of their lungs.

While track 2 offers the same upbeat, catchy tempo as track 1, Trippin It Up offers a completely different sound and shows a different side of Huff. Trippin It Up was featured on the soundtrack to Secrets Of The Mountain. This song is versatile in the way that the lyrics will make you want to think and reflect, but the beat will make you want to blast it from your car speakers with the windows down. With the guitar and drums working together heavily in this song, it offers a more rockish sounding beat, and the lyrics provide insight into the issue of commitment in relationships, that can be seen from a female or male perspective.

The only true ballad on the album is track 3, Sweet Nothing. With very light and soft guitar rhythms and drum beats, Huff’s voice really shines on this power ballad. While Sweet Nothing offers something different, you can’t help but want to hear more upbeat, powerful songs like the previous 2 tracks. Fortunately track 4, provides just that. Heartbeat is the strongest track on the album and a personal favorite of mine. This song provides the best of both worlds in terms of melody and the lyrics are easy to relate to. In the song Heartbeat, Huff belts out lyrics like, "don’t let it bring you down, don’t let it beat you up, if you haven’t found your one and only," and these words are something that everyone feels at one point or another. We’re all searching for that one person, and with this track Huff provides hope for those who haven’t found that person yet. The melody of Heartbeat starts off slow and ballad like with the actual sound of a heart beating in the background, but it then shifts to an upbeat, more rockish melody, as if to drive home that you indeed will be OK if you have not yet found your "one and only." With the shifts in melody during this track, it really helps showcase Huff’s vocal range.

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