Ascension – Follow the Path

Follow the Path
1986 (no label)
Streator, Illinois, USA

Gary Smith – Lead vocals, harmony vocals, guitar
Steve Stripling – Lead guitars, rhythm guitars
Greg Smith – Bass guitar, Taurus pedals
Mike Kondourajian – Drums, keyboards
Glen Smith – Acoustic grand piano, analog synthesis, digital synthesis, harmony vocals, lead vocals on “Tempted”

Side 1:

  1. Follow the Path
  2. Tempted
  3. The Lesson
  4. What’s Mine

Side 2:

  1. Tribulation Man
  2. Proverbs 1:7
  3. Wisdom
  4. Immortality

Pretty cool release. I would have said that it was prog rock based on the cover, but it starts off with two good early/mid 80s traditional heavy metal numbers. They kind of float between straight up rock, and even some alt rock / new wave sounds as the album progresses, but they seem to come back to the heavy metal umbrella. The lead singer just has a distinct heavy metal rasp that is hard to get away from. Not that this is a bad thing – I like this demo and the variety they bring in with the different sounds. Also of interest are the songs “Proverbs 1:7” and “Wisdom,” which are played as one song (with “Proverbs 1:7” as an instrumental intro). Just thought that was a cool songwriting idea.

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