White light is all she sees
Veiled by her life's illusion
With pieces of a broken dream"
One Word Review: Massive
As "The Name Of The Rose" plays, dream-like mirages are conjured in my mind. They linger after the album is over, slowly dissipating, leaving only the sensation that something special has passed.
Everything comes together on Ten's second album. The songs have become bigger, bolder and all together feel more like a unity rather than just a collection of great songs, which could be said for the debut.
The album has a special quality to it and today it feels just as strong, as when I first listened to it many years ago.
Ten play their own brand of hard rock with emphasis on sweeping melodies and deep atmospheres. Vocal harmonies that leave you gasping for breath and passionate guitar work are two of the main attractions. Gary Hughes' voice has a warmth that slides down the spine and makes your heart pump just a little faster while Vinny Burns' guitar adds a kick of adrenaline. These two guys are the core of the band. Greg Morgan on drums deserves a mention as well, as he lays down a solid foundation with plenty of detail.
As the album opens an enticing half-acoustic passage eases you into a relaxed state of mind, not at all preparing you for the massive guitar riff that suddenly rips through the atmosphere. The title track has a metallic edge, which suits it well. It is still utterly melodic with a focus on Gary's voice.
The album moves effortlessly between powerful, hard rocking songs that blow the hair off your head and smooth ballads that tug on the heartstrings.
Beside the mysteries of love, the lyrics touch on issues of drug abuse and war. The Rainbow and Goodnight Saigon are two personal favorites of the album. The way Gary's voice rises and holds the last syllable of each word just before the chorus of The Rainbow is wonderful. Goodnight Saigon is a tough rocker with a memorable chorus.
A few other highlights include the way Wildest Dreams builds to its distinguished chorus, the furious opening to Don't Cry, the brilliant driving chorus of Wait for you that builds in massive intensity halfway through and Through the Fire, which is that gentlest and most touching of love poems.
I could go on, but you should really have the pleasure of discovering the album yourself.
In terms of Epic Hard Rock I have found nothing better than this album. It is pure perfection and I am happy to disclose... this rose.
Written By Steen
Online: Tuesday, June 18, 2013
The Name Of The Rose