Artist:  Ten

Venue: Trillians Rock Bar, Newcastle

Date: 23 May 2001  

We arrived at 7.30 pm to find the place packed to the rafters.

It was hot, it was sticky, and there were more bodies squeezed into this bar than we had seen in a long time. Not only that but they were still streaming in through the doors.

It was only 5 months since Bob Catley and his band headlined this venue and the memories of their great performance were still fresh in everyone's mind.

Tonight though we were in for a special treat as they had brought along Ten as their support act. For a large part this support band have been massively under rated by the UK rock listening population.

Once again it seems the Japanese market have recognized a band with true talent, when all along it had been sitting under our noses all the time. To be fair both bands are equally as talented as the other and so this was a gift from the gods to have them both perform on the same bill.

Fans of Bob's will already be familiar with the Lead Singer Gary Hughes, who has both written and produced most if not all of the songs on Bob's solo albums.

To Gary's right on the stage we saw another familiar face, that of Vinnie Burns who played the guitars on the new album as well. The influence that Bob has had on this man became more and more apparent as the set progressed.

Gary sounded very similar to Bob and even had the same wavy arms and hand gestures that have become a bit of a trade mark of Bob's throughout his vast career.

Throughout the whole set the fans wisely stood back from the front of the stage as Gary began to wildly wave the microphone stand around while singing. It was only a matter of time before he impaled someone with it, and so a wide birth was given to him so he could get on with this enthusiastic feat.

Ten started their set with 'March of the Argonauts', which was meet with rapturous applause from the crowd. Yes, Ten are a band that like their fantasy tales and it soon became clear why Gary writes so much of Bob's material these days. This man has such power and passion in his voice when he sings that it is hard to understand why they haven't been headlining gigs all over this fair country of ours.

There looked a lot of members in the band and they were a bit squashed up on the stage. There was no room to move but this did not hinder them musically at all. Like true pro's they whipped the crowd into a frenzy very quickly and won the hearts of the majority of the room.

In fact the CD's were flying off the merchandise stall as quickly as they were being put out. I was later told that this had been the case for most of the tour and they were rapidly selling out of them.

One particular track that they launched into with great gusto was 'We Rule The Night'. Obviously a popular favourite with all the people who were familiar with their material as they clapped wildly when the song was introduced. Apparently this was the first UK tour that this song had been played on, this we were told was it's UK premiere! By the sound of the crowd it was long overdue on the setlist of this mighty band.

Not being particularly familiar with the band before tonight it has to be said that after this show I will most definitely be hunting out some of their back catalogue and giving it a whirl on the old CD player. My personal favourite track was 'Spellbound', which to sum it up simply is classic rock at it's best.

The songs came thick and fast and the crowd that had gathered tonight were soon becoming fans of this support act. The band finished their set with 'Stay With Me' before thanking the crowd and leaving the stage.

The sound system started to play some songs from Bob's new album but the crowd were having none of it, they wanted more and they wanted it now.

And so to a baying crowd the band took to the stage once more and finished the set properly with an encore of 'Name Of The Rose'.

Being a band keen on inter-band relations we saw the man with the magical fingers on the keyboard Paul Hodson do the honours for the whole set.

During the encore we were also treated to hearing him sing backing vocals to the song. Quite surprising really to hear he has such a high vocal range. Well done that man.

Let's hope we see more of this band up here in the near future. They've won us over, now they have to remember to visit and keep in touch!

Setlist: March of the Argonauts, Fear the Force, The Robe, Bright on the Blade, Spellbound, We rule the Night, After the love has Gone, The Stranger, Silent Rain, Stay with Me.  Encore: Name of the Rose


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