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Ten: Albion (2014)

Written by: Kev Rowland

2014 saw the band back with their eleventh studio album, and in the two years since ‘Heresy and Creed’ there had been some changes in the guitarists, with Dan Mitchell leaving due to health problems related to his wrist and arm, being replaced by Dann Rosingana and Steve Grocott (yes, the band now had three guitarists). One might think with an over exuberance of six stringers that the band would turn into a heavier direction, but that is never likely happen all the time that Gary is at the helm and here is an album that is the direct sequel to what had gone previously.

Ten do have a formula, but there again so do many other bands – one knows exactly what one is going to get when buying an album by Ten, and they deliver time and again. Gary is a superb singer, but what makes Ten such a great band is the combination of all the musicians coming together as a complete unit. There are some great guitar licks, some wonderful elements added by the keyboards, times when the bass is up the front, and the drums are driving it all along, and it is all of this combined with the vocals that make them such a force to be reckoned with.

Back in the Nineties I was very involved with the melodic rock underground, albeit not nearly as much as I was with prog, but these days have lost touch (doesn’t help that I am now on the other side of the world as well). Consequently I don’t know what the buzz is around Ten at present, but to my ears they are still one of the very finest exponents of melodic hard rock around, and long may it stay that way. The songs are strong, the music really does rock, it is always melodic and full of hooks, the production is spot on, and the vocals are harmonious and powerful without ever being turned into parodies of the genre. It has taken me some years to rediscover Ten, and my musical world is all the better for it.

 

Rating: 8/10

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Track list:
1. Alone In The Dark Tonight
2. Battlefield
3. It’s Alive
4. Albion Born
5. Sometimes Love Takes The Long Way Home
6. A Smuggler’s Tale
7. It Ends This Day
8. Die For Me
9. Gioco D’Amore
10. Wild Horses

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Links:
https://www.tenofficial.com/
http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/

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