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10 Speed
by Keavin Wiggins

Artist:10 Speed
Title:10 Speed
Label: A&M

It Makes me Crazy
Space Queen
I Hate You
Me & You
Suicidal Psychopathic Freak
When your lips are Blue
Head Splits Open
Give a Damn

10 Speed picks up where Ziggy Stardust left off. With a heavy mix of funk, rock, pop, and rock opera the 10 Speed debut is sure to appeal to a wide variety of fans.  I had first heard 10 Speed live, when I went to see the band Weed puller back in April, and 10 Speed was also on the bill. I remember being intrigued by the mix of deep soulful Bowie style vocals, and Hendrix style guitar being laid down by vocalist/guitarist Hutch. I spoke with the band after the show, and learned that they had a debut record coming out on A&M. The debut record from which I am reviewing was originally scheduled to be released back in May but for some reason had been pushed back. 

The bands attitude left a lasting impression on me, they had not gained the ego that goes along with playing for a major label, bass player Dimitry and drummer Newman, vocalist/guitarist Hutch seemed like guys from the neighborhood, not predestined Rock Stars. This attitude comes through in the Album, It is fresh, exciting music without the emotional baggage that has been so prevalent in the music of the 90’s. 

Judging from the songs, 10 Speed is just as happy Rocking, grooving to funk , or telling a space opera story. After seeing the band in April I have waited patiently for the release of their debut, I was interested to see if they could capture the excitement I witnessed at their live show onto a CD.  So this is a review 6 months in the making, as I waited eagerly to hear the music of 10 Speed once more. 

The Bowie influence is apparent through out the album; from the epic Space Queen where Hutch tells the Story of an astronaut lost in space who is rescued by an alien beauty, to the groovy back beat to songs like It Makes Me Crazy.

But to label the band as a Bowie knock off would be an injustice, the band has borrowed from the legendary rocker, but they also melded that sound with other influences from music from the 70’s through the 90’s, into a coherent sound which can only be recognized as 10 Speed. 

The highlights of the album include Space Queen, Wired, I hate you, to the highly addictive It Makes Me Crazy. Forever made a lasting impression on me as well, the guitars brought forth memories of Santana, while Dimitry’s Basslines through out the album prove that the 4 string instrument is decidedly more important to the overall sound of a band that just holding down the bottom end.   Movie goers got a taste of Crazy briefly this past summer when it was included in the movie “Can’t hardly Wait”, that describes my feelings about this CD perfectly. I can’t hardly wait for this CD to hit the stores and the Airwaves, so others can discover the magic of the 10 Speed sound.

The only diversion I found on the CD from the live experience is that Hutch toned down the guitar sound on the record.  Although after  listening to the disc a couple of times it is apparent that the Hedrix style would have been overkill on the CD. Not to say he doesn’t display his guitar skills on the record, they are indeed there, just lowkey.  With Hutch’s playing on the record it appears that he was concentrating on the overall sound of the songs, not just the guitars. But if you are a guitar junky, Catch this band live, you will not be disappointed. 

Making a blockbuster debut is a difficult task, to try and join the musical ranks  of Van Halen I, Guns n Roses ‘Appetite for Destruction. Very few bands can pull it off, it usually takes a few albums before they become superstars. Never the less, 10 Speeds debut has all the ingredients to accomplish this task. Ultimately, it will be up to you, the fans, to decide the fate of 10 Speed. For I am only one person, but if it was up to me, 10 Speed would soon be burning up the charts and airwaves. 

Visit the Rock n World Artist Feature for 10 Speed

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