Saturday, 7 October 2017

Ronnie Montrose, Ricky Phillips & Eric Singer 10x10, album review

Well, that's 24 including Ronnie...

A project begun in 2003, nine years before his death, and since completed by bassist Ricky Philips and drummer Eric Singer – with stellar guest vocalists and guitarists – this final release of Ronnie Montrose’s 10x10 project is worth the commitment for its homage to his own legacy and that of the rock it exemplifies: heavy on the singing sass and guitar licks.

The tracks themselves are not gems of songwriting but are gems of generic platforms for the guests to continue a lineage of riff and roughshod – though in all honesty the polish of these performers put a glorious gloss on the noise. The listing of its ten songs illustrates the company and guarantee of what is delivered:

01. Heavy Traffic featuring Eric Martin & Dave Meniketti
02. Love Is An Art featuring Edgar Winter & Rick Derringer
03. Color Blind featuring Sammy Hagar & Steve Lukather
04. Still Singin' With The Band featuring Glenn Hughes, Phil Collen & Jimmy "Z" Zavala
05. Strong Enough featuring Tommy Shaw
06. Any Minute featuring Mark Farner & Ricky Phillips
07. The Kingdom's Come Undone featuring Ricky Phillips & Joe Bonamassa
08. One Good Reason featuring Bruce Turgon & Brad Whitford
09. Head On Straight featuring Davey Pattison & Marc Bonilla
10. I'm Not Lying featuring Gregg Rolie, Tom Gimbel & Lawrence Gowan

It isn’t easy to pick out favourites as all tracks slot neatly into the classic rock production line. I do have an early proclivity to the pairings of Edgar Winter & Rick Derringer and Sammy Hagar & Steve Lukather, though these are not surprising to single out. Closer I'm Not Lying is a beautiful song.

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