Ashley Delima – Evolution

SPOTIFY: https://open.spotify.com/track/1Z20WA6eat46A02XLAUmQv?si=929_MJ91TwqOs9LAjcsvwQ

When Patty Smyth sang, “shooting  down the walls of heartache, I am the warrior” alongside the rock band Scandal, she kicked down several walls and paved the way for female rocker lead vocalists with non-cookie-cutter voices. The same goes for Pat Benatar, Stevie Nicks, Pink and even Sia. These ladies all have that grit, that extra moxie layer. Please add newcomer Ashley Delima to the list. Her track “Evolution” may not have the live rock band behind her, but it’s her voice alone that fights its way to your soul.

“Evolution” the song itself isn’t too shabby either. Delima comes out strong at the beginning and holds her own the entire track (it’s just under 3:30).  The song appears to be about making bad decisions in the past and falling into the wrong relationship. It has this mysterious pull to it – the music bed is slithers around Delima’s confident, coaxing vocals. She’s only 19 but sings with bravado and assurance. I liked the overall vibe – it’s not a bump-bump, heavy percussion dance track; it’s a slower build up. Again, her voice and the relentless chorus help “Evolution” shine.

Interestingly missing from this track is the advocacy and even Latin-flavor you would expect from Delima. Delima is an American citizen, but grew up in Brazil.

Her previous release “Stay In America” channeled the love for Dreamers. For those of you living under a rock, Delima’s powerful song reached out in support of those children struggling to stay in the United States of America under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) immigration policy. If you liked “Stay In America” you will love “Evolution.”

Delima gets mad street credit for working alongside legendary songwriter, produer Marc Swersky, on “Stay In America.” Among the two-time Grammy winner’s resume are compositions for Joe Cocker, The Bodyguard soundtrack and Hilary Duff. Veteran songwriter Brielle Brown also assisted on “Stay In America.”

She’s back in New Jersey and while she calls the Garden State home, “Evolution” doesn’t include any of the flavors and nuances you’d expect from someone who lived in Brazil. Her voice certainly stands out, but if you’re seeking out a Shakira-like tune, you won’t find it in “Evolution.” The song, too, lacks lyrical depth – it’s a pop song so it’s more about repeating the chorus and quickly gaining your attention. I think it does it well. Still, I urge you to keep listening.  Delima’s voice is mesmerizing.

When Delima sings “don’t play me” in sultry voice, then goes onto to hum “wooo, wooo,” the tempo and beat are infectious. You hum with her! Believe me. This song is easy to keep on repeat. If you like Pink, the Spice Girls, Maren Morris and Stevie Knicks you might soon have an affinity for Ashley Delima. Anyone looking to add to his or her summer Spotify playlist will want to add this gem of a track – “Evolution” is the real deal. Delima gets two, big thumbs up for a solid pop – flavored song. Kudos to this incredible songwriting team.

I-TUNES: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/evolution-single/1373237452

Sebastian Cole