Various Ten; Ten

Ten; Ten is 71 minutes and 21 tracks of quirky yet fun and catchy rock pop tunes by artists from Canada, the U.S. and Japan compiled by Lil' Red Wagon and the champions of obscure music gems, My Mean Magpie. Most of the musicians on this comp would be known by only the most informed of music savants. The better-known names on this comp are Oval Teen, Mean Red Spiders and Royal City. The Music on Ten; Ten tends to embrace a lo-fi aesthetic, adding charm and character to all the songs, which have a youthful and passionately rendered quality to them. Some really cool tunes on this comp (not that there are any un-cool tunes) are Georgia's "George Orwell," Lunchbox's "Love Is All Around," Kim Bliss's "I Fall" and "Forget That Girl" by Jumprope. Georgia does a great musical tribute to George Orwell, in particular 1984, utilising various slogans from the text to construct their lyrics. A rather timely tune, come to think of it. Lunchbox's tune, incidentally, has nothing to do with a Troggs tune by a similar name, but more with the theme song to the Mary Tyler Moore Show. Kim Bliss's "I Fall" is the best-produced song on this album, which is just as well, since she has a gorgeous voice and some serious piano playing abilities to boot. And Jumprope offers some good advice in "Forget that Girl." The obvious love for the contributors' craft resonates on every tune here, and I can honestly say that one would be hard pressed to find so much consistently good music emerging from another comp, or label, for that matter. Hopefully, the artists on Ten; Ten will not remain obscure for much longer. (My Mean Magpie)