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Aces High - 1994 Ten N Out



ARTIST: Aces High
ALBUM: Ten 'N' Out
LABEL: Megarock
SERIAL: MRRCD 011
YEAR: 1994

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Nikki Andersen - vocals * Jake Sandberg - guitars * David Brandt - keyboards * Anders J'Son - bass * Mats Bjorklund - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Jungle Of Love * 02 Do You Need * 03 Nobodys Fool * 04 Remember * 05 Piece Of The Action * 06 Ten 'N' Out * 07 Heartache Breakdown * 08 Rock The City * 09 Never Again * 10 Eternally/td>


Background
When I first heard this album I was totally overcome by it's class. There's AOR, there's hard rock elements, and power emphasised in both the musicianship and vocals. A total class package, and I gotta say it's knocking on the door of being in my top 10 albums of the decade. To me, only Swedish bands can deliver music this good, so hats off to ya chaps! Aces High .. well we have so many influences on hand here it's difficult to point the finger. But if I was really pushed, Swedish contemporaries Pole Position come to mind, while some of their musical arrangements featuring keyboards veer close to Haywire (circa 'Don't Just Stand There'). A pot pourri yes, but interesting and varied enough from tracks 1 through to 10. Image wise they conjure up visions of Skid Row but unlike them their music is less 'full frontal' and 'in your face'. There are a few of the Def Leppard big chant along choruses happening in there too to give it that 'big sound'.


The Songs
It's power all the way on tracks like the wickedly heavy 'Piece Of The Action', 'Nobody's Fool' and 'Rock This City', while their subtler moments include the delicious ballad 'Remember'. The vocal harmonies at the end are so melodious it sounds like a choir is in there helping! Also the last track 'Eternally' is a graceful accoustic workout with accompanying keyboard layers to boot. On other tracks the heaviness is combined with musical melody such as 'Jungle of Love', 'Heartache Breakdown' and the pacey 'Never Again' for instance. But most of the way through we are hit with waves of guitar crunch and the powerful vocals of Nikki Andersen, and to top it off it's an album I can sing along with when I'm doing the ironing! (ha ha).


In Summary
During the early-mid 90's Aces High never really took the opportunity to improve their lot riding on the shirttails of this great opus and the momentum was subsequently lost. They did release a follow up in 1998 but unfortunately was not in the same bombastic style as 'Ten 'N' Out.


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Comments
#1 | george_the_jack on June 10 2008 15:17:49
Here is very good AOR album with...ONE OF THE 10 BEST BALLADS OF ALL TIME FOR ME! ''Remember'' is like a fairytale! This track is made and directed for HEAVEN. I cannot express enough emotions and colors that fulfill your soul when you hear it for the first time. The album is quite good but because of ''Remember'' takes 9,5 Smile
#2 | rostoned on June 10 2008 18:05:49
Bought it when it came out (was quite hyped up in Kerrang if I remember well) but sold it pretty soon, it was not my favourite cup of tea! But honestly I don't remember a single note of it rite now, who knows if after a fresh listen... helpless
#3 | gdazegod on June 10 2008 20:15:08
Fantastic album. One of the best from 1994. Agree with GTJ.. 'Remember' is a killer ballad. The vocal harmonies at the end are Tabernacle Choir stuff!
#4 | reyno-roxx on July 28 2008 14:01:10
Glad you thought this was a real gem at the time of release too, George! Glad it wasn't just me!
 
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