23 Sep Phil Hamnett
10cclo live in Middleton, Manchester Friday Sept 8th, 2017
Our event last night needed to be spot on as it was a Memorial Day for one of our players. We needed a professional band who would appeal to all audiences and have the highest levels of Musicianship. Having seen them in Oldham and spoken with them , I knew they would not let us down.
Arriving 5 hours before curtain up, a rigorous sound check conducted by top level techie Chris for 90 minutes, only then would the band be ready to go. Appealing to all ages ? well there was a 6 year old dancing at the front in several numbers and my 84 year old mother rocking at the back.
The 6 band members are professionals with several of them indeed being full time music teachers. The sound is that authentic, that several in the audience couldn’t believe this was a live act. With the combination of the songs of both 10cc and ELO it means that it is hit after hit. Opening up with All Over the World , lead singer Shaun had a superb vocal range , fully at ease with the complex writings of Jeff Lynne and 10cc. Also look out for Shaun’s dry wit as he chats with the audience between numbers.
Visually the effects are stunning, with a collection of instruments costing well over five figures, a brilliant lighting set and an on the spot master technician monitoring every number, visually this was superb. However there is more to come , as the band now have a screenshow that will be projected for future gigs.
A couple of numbers are undertaken by drummer Kevin taking lead vocals and he hits all the right notes in “I’m not in Love” and “Donna”., two of the most difficult songs to sing. With two superb guitarists in Paul and the vastly experienced Roy plus the recently recruited violinist Nick ( who adds so much to the ELO numbers ), all the angles are covered. However there is one key component still remaining and like the rest of the band this guy is a musical genius, John Lewis.
For those old enough to remember ELO mid 70’s there would be a 5 piece string section. Indeed there have been many instances since , when Jeff Lynne has toured with a full Orchestra to get the true ELO sound. The only way to get around this is if you have a genius on keyboard/organ/synth who can replicate many of the sounds. John Lewis is indeed that man, an absolute star , one you could just spend the whole night watching perform. He is a highly trained pianist , he delivers and like the rest of the band provides some pitch perfect backing vocals. We mustn’t forget the sound man Chris who stepped up and gave a superb vocal performance himself and left those dancing at the front in greater raptures.
A fantastic two hours plus, of the greatest hits, and people I’d never met before were coming up to me demanding when would they be coming back !!!! Meanwhile at 12pm the band were preparing for a three and a half hour return journey to Newcastle, such is their commitment. For myself I will make a similar journey early November to catch the band in Coventry.
The final word though goes to the parents of the boy who died so young and in whose memory the event was held. His mum commented that for such a special occasion they wanted the best and in her opinion they certainly got the best in 10cclo