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The Aces at 9:30 Club
When The Aces released their sophomore effort Under My Influence in July 2020, it was clear that the Utah quartet had expanded on the melodic sensibilities initially showcased in their 2018 debut When My Heart Felt Volcanic. It was also a risk of sorts. Three of the four members—lead singer Cristal Ramirez, her sister, drummer Alisa Ramirez, and guitarist Katie Henderson—had come out prior to the release and openly addressed their queerness in nerve-exposing songs like “Kelly,” where the love interest is another woman. Men in their professional lives advised against singing about women, and the band balked at the suggestion. “It was more important that we fight that, and we are authentic,” Cristal Ramirez tells City Paper. “We owe it to our fans, a lot of them being young, queer people…We’re not trying to cater to people that would have a problem with who we are and if you have problem with who we are then, cool, we’re not the band for you.” Ramirez adds: “Also, if we aren’t your fancy, maybe ask yourself why.” That candor will be on display on Dec. 10 as The Aces take the stage at 9:30 Club—their first time as headliners. For a band that’s been gigging since they were 10 years old (they’re now in their mid-twenties), the headlining spot is something they’ve been working towards for years. “We opened up the 9:30 Club for two or three different bands in the past five years,” Cristal Ramirez says. “Getting to see their crowds and be like ‘One day, we’re gonna headline.’ It’s a massive milestone for us.” The Aces perform Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. at 9:30 Club, 815 V St., NW. 930.com. $23.