Genre/Influences: Dark Electro-Pop, Cinematographic.
Format: Digital, CD.
Background/Info: Fredrik Croona strikes back with the third full length album under the Croona moniker. He previously released three other albums as Fredrik Croona and got involved with different bands like Cynical Existence, Project Rotten ao. The Swedish artist realized this album together with George Klontzas (previously involved with PreEmptive Strike 0.1). “Ascend” has been introduced as an album with a different approach and resulted in twelve songs.
Content: The opening song takes off in a pretty cinematographic style, but progressively evolves into a heavy, pumping piece of music. Croona transposes classical Electro-Pop into a raw and powerful format. That’s definitely the main characteristic of the work. The songs are driven by danceable kicks, carrying melody lines, passionate vocals and this raw, cold production on top. One of the songs features guitar playing injecting an Industrial touch to the album. The album finally ends the way it started with a Cinematographic approach.
+ + + : It’s not easy defining the style of “Ascend”, but I experience it as a harsh, raw and icy Electro-Pop style mixed with Industrial elements. Above all it’s an atypical, powerful format. I also noticed a true progression in the song writing and global production, which is probably due to George Klontzas. But let’s not forget Fredrik Croona became an experienced artist who has released an impressive number of productions. They both together create a great match. Some raw sound treatments are sometimes reminding me of Seb Komor, the instrumental “Mindbender” being a true masterpiece, but I also have to mention “Automate” for its monstrous Techno lead and “Futurism” carried by a solid chorus.
– – – : I don’t see major minus points, but I got the feeling this project is even able to do better.
Conclusion: “Ascend” definitely appears to be the best Croona album so far. This is the sound of aggressive, raw Electro-Pop.
Best songs: “Mindbender”, “Automate”, “Futurism”, “The Search”, “The Dark Ones”.