Ambitions - Question (Cover Artwork)


Ambitions: QuestionQuestion (2006)
Think Fast! Records

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:

Contributed by: elliottfrelliottfr
(others by this writer | submit your own)

When I first caught word that Ambitions was a side project involving members of With Honor and Shai Hulud, I figured their release would end up coming off like Heart Means Everything and That Within Blood Ill Tempered thrown into a blender. Man was I wrong, and I'm glad that I was. It turns .
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When I first caught word that Ambitions was a side project involving members of With Honor and Shai Hulud, I figured their release would end up coming off like Heart Means Everything and That Within Blood Ill Tempered thrown into a blender.

Man was I wrong, and I'm glad that I was.

It turns out that Ambitions consist of the Aust brothers and John Ross of With Honor fame. Apparently some of the guys from Shai Hulud lend their skills as members of Ambitions when they perform live.

Musically, Question sounds like a stripped down version of the sound With Honor had on their last release This Is Our Revenge. The EP is completely devoid of unnecessary breakdowns, but still manages to mix up tempos quite a bit. For its duration it really straddles the line between punk and hardcore. There are plenty of old-school push-mosh songs chocked full of appropriate, well-integrated breakdowns, but there are just as many mid-tempo songs that are almost reminiscent of Fugazi, or even Rival Schools.

While the instrumentation and general sound was surprising enough for me, the vocals were a definite shock; Jay Aust is holding the mic on this album, and you have no idea what you're in for. The opening track "Uphill Battle" opens up with some pretty high-end mediocre shout/screams... but then, what's this? Oh dear lord, he's singingâ?¦and it'sâ?¦really, really good.

Seriously, the only thing I can compare Aust's singing voice to is that of Shawn Stern on the Youth Brigade album To Sell the Truth. Again, the shouts are a little weak, but the singing is so good that it hurts to think that With Honor had a more impressive option to fill their former vocal void all along.

Ambitions may not be what I signed up for when I picked up Question, but I don't care, I want more. This EP is a boon to hardcore in general. It's raw, unpolished, and honest. It's the kind of material that makes you want to crawl over kids to get closer to the mic. It's a nice break from the standard swing-your-arms-like-a-propeller-during-the-eleventh-breakdown-in-the-first-song type of hardcore. Here's to hoping these guys put out a full-length like you (and I) wouldn't believe.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Ignitedude (May 13, 2008)

Brilliant album straight-up fast paced melodic hardcore oozing with soul and passion. Whoever said it earlier was correct; there's a HUGE Ignite influence going on here

allon (November 2, 2007)

I really can't make a complaint against this record - maybe just that it's too short. I love it though, i perfect mish-mash of punk, hardcore, singing, screaming, wonderful. Looking forward to the full-length in november.

Anonymous (December 18, 2006)

I love love love love love this CD.

I will definitely check out any band you guys said had influence over them.

nate_derby (December 18, 2006)

I haven't been into hardcore for more than a few years, but this sounds pretty refreshing to me. Especially the singing. I dig it!

Anonymous (December 18, 2006)

The comment below is stupid and wrong. The "staff" comment clearly referred to the record label and not Punknew.org.

Scruffy (December 18, 2006)

"If it's true, they need to get some better writers on staff stat."

Do you see a "Staff" button by this reviewer's name? No. He is just a commenter like you and me who submitted a review, and it is actually a good review, too.

BisonChris (December 17, 2006)

very solid realse, i was pleasantly surprised, reminds me of sinking ships

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

That's a very good call. If it's true, they need to get some better writers on staff stat. It's one thing to crank out a BS review if you're talking about Aiden or something, but if you've actually got something good to review.... Don't fake the funk.

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

anyone else notice the dude's username who reviewed this. it got a high score and it appears he has something to do with the record label, as its on Think Fast! Records and the last three letters in his name are TFR? i haven't heard this myself, so its not a putdown, just seems weird if someone was allowed to review a record released by them. or if they are on the street team or some bullshit.

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

just because a hardcore vocalist sings doesnt make it ignite young kids just need to brush up on their roots

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

Nope. You're wrong.

inagreendase (December 15, 2006)

There's definitely a huuuuge Ignite influence on this.

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

"I don't really hear the Ignite comparison. Maybe Bold."

I'd definitely have to agree with you on Bold (Seeing as how I got strong "Looking Back" vibes from this one).

I'd say its more akin to a mixture of Bold's later material mixed with a liberal dose of "This Is Our Revenge" era With Honor. I'm not sure where the reviewer pulled the Shawn Stern reference from, but more often then not, Aust vocals tend to remind me a bit of Dexter Holland's.

Its a fun record.


Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

It's not "groundbreaking" in the "no one's ever done it before" sense. But it's really good at a time when most hardcore and melodic-hardcore are really bad.

I don't really hear the Ignite comparison. Maybe Bold.

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

what is groundbreaking anyways these days? rock in all its forms has been around for 50 years.

I don't understand what people want these bands to do, stand on their heads and play the harmonica? if the music is good, i'll listen to it

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

that last comment is quite voerblown. yes, this is quite good. but certainly nothing groundbreaking.

sounds like ignite to me.

saint_nick (December 15, 2006)

pretty solid record.

remainsunseen (December 15, 2006)

awesome i wanted to know how they were cus they are playing jared fest this sunday. im definatley picking this up when im there.

DiscoFucker (December 15, 2006)

I've only heard their demo, but it is fucking amazing, and I trust that this is too. Definitely one of the best hardcore bands out today.

Hey_Asshole (December 15, 2006)


fuck you and your retarded record title

JustinUCR (December 15, 2006)

the singing / harmonies / half spoken-sung parts remind me of SNFU.
no one else notices this...
...does anyone agree with me on this?

Amazingthemike (December 15, 2006)

I loved the demo. I've yet to get this.

Anonymous (December 15, 2006)

This is a terrible review of an abso-fucking-lutely brilliant album. Definitely my favorite release of the past year, it compares best with mid 80's giants Dag Nasty (combined with a bit of a "posi-core" vibe and a little more updated sound). The songwriting is way better than anything With Honor ever managed, with some memorable lines and music that shares its melodicism with some of Shai Hulud's better stuff. This is probably the only thing I've heard recently that I'd recommend hands down.

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