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[REVIEW]: Return to Evermore (2006) by Ten


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TEN

Return to Evermore (2006)

Frontiers Records

Produced by: Gary Hughes

 

For the Genre: **--- (2/5)

Compared to the Era: ****- (4/5)

 

While some die-hard Ten fans will probably disagree, Return to Evermore is an album with a bad case of having a split personality. First, the good news. “Strangers in the Night” and “Sail Away” are, incidentally, magnificent pieces and “Even the Ghosts Cry” and “ Evil’s On Top in the World” are textbook Melodic Rock ear-candy, especially thanks to Vinny Burns’ replacement on guitars, Chris Francis. For some reason, though, the album veers off into alternative rock-land with tracks like “Lost Soul” and “Tearing My Heart Out,” which seem to be inspired by the initial work of Alice In Chains or even The Black Crowes. Nevertheless, these tracks are still more enjoyable than “Dreamtide,” a song with a terrible mix and ridiculous sound effects that spoiled an, otherwise, nice tune with a phenomenal chorus.

 

I have no idea what they were talking about in the liner notes when they compared Pete Coleman to Yngwie Malmsteen by calling him “Oldie Pipesteen”. I’m sure Mr. Coleman is good, but why the hyperbole? Especially when his part—the English pipes in the song “Evermore”—is not particularly spectacular. His line adds a nice touch at best. In fact, that song was getting ready to end up very lame until you get to the heart of the track. Even then, it joins songs like "Temple of Love" in being like the rest of the record: the material just isn’t the strongest thing Ten has ever done.

 

In fact, the one reason I haven’t tried to eBay my copy is that the artwork is brilliant, especially the on-disc printing. Otherwise, it doesn’t seem like two years was spent getting this record out. Even though I liked it much better than Babylon, I couldn’t bring myself to listen to this album more than just the few times it took to get acquainted with the material because there were just too many issues. Excessively lengthy tracks due to excessively lengthy introductions, inaudible lyrics, poorly mixed drums and songs that were beneath Hughes’ typically ability to write strong material.

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4/5 compared to the era? Couldn't agree with that one, mate. As you rightly say, it's a pretty average to below-average disc and there have been plenty of great discs in this era of our music. IMO, of course. :)

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4/5 compared to the era? Couldn't agree with that one, mate. As you rightly say, it's a pretty average to below-average disc and there have been plenty of great discs in this era of our music. IMO, of course. :)

 

Well around 2004-2006, I think I've heard some of the worst mainstream rock coming out of America that I had heard since the debut alt-rock/grunge era from the mid-1990s. So, as difficult as it was for me to even finish "Return to Evermore," I still didn't think it was as bad as what labels like Universal or Sony was putting out at the time.

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4/5 compared to the era? Couldn't agree with that one, mate. As you rightly say, it's a pretty average to below-average disc and there have been plenty of great discs in this era of our music. IMO, of course. :)

 

Well around 2004-2006, I think I've heard some of the worst mainstream rock coming out of America that I had heard since the debut alt-rock/grunge era from the mid-1990s. So, as difficult as it was for me to even finish "Return to Evermore," I still didn't think it was as bad as what labels like Universal or Sony was putting out at the time.

Yeah, I guess if you're comparing it to what's in the charts and everything in the world that was released in 2006, then anything released in 'our genre' would sound "good" by comparison. I was just thinking that around 2006 there were some killer melodic / AOR / Hard Rock releases which would leave this one well behind. :)

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4/5 compared to the era? Couldn't agree with that one, mate. As you rightly say, it's a pretty average to below-average disc and there have been plenty of great discs in this era of our music. IMO, of course. :)

 

Well around 2004-2006, I think I've heard some of the worst mainstream rock coming out of America that I had heard since the debut alt-rock/grunge era from the mid-1990s. So, as difficult as it was for me to even finish "Return to Evermore," I still didn't think it was as bad as what labels like Universal or Sony was putting out at the time.

Yeah, I guess if you're comparing it to what's in the charts and everything in the world that was released in 2006, then anything released in 'our genre' would sound "good" by comparison. I was just thinking that around 2006 there were some killer melodic / AOR / Hard Rock releases which would leave this one well behind. :)

 

You're not wrong about that. '06 was a KILLER year for Melodic Rock. "Nowhere Land," "Falling in Between," "Sunstorm" - these records blew the doors off of Return to Evermore. 2011 is turning out to be a similar renaissance year for melodic rock (What If... by Mr. Big, Forevermore by Whitesnake and the new releases by Robin Beck and Stan Bush just to name a few). It's weird to me, because Ten has recorded some TREMENDOUS material in the past.

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Wow this CD is a stinker, there is no redeeming value in listening to it regardless of what was out at the time, or comparing it to their previous releases.

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