ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages


Ten Jinn - 2003 - “Alone"

(61:00; Sweden Rock Records)


The third Ten Jinn album was recorded in somewhat strange circumstances in that John Paul Strauss had moved from America to Sweden, Stan Whitaker had decided to go back to Happy The Man, and while Michael Matier, Robert Niemeyer and Mark Wickliffe were all heavily involved, none of them played on all the tracks as it was partly recorded in America and then finished in Sweden. However, this does not sound as if it were recorded in that manner, but sounds as if it is a complete band from beginning to end, with Strauss very much in control of proceedings in an album which owes a lot to melodic rock as well as prog. The vocals have some great harmonies, the songs are all packed full of hooks, but in many ways this is a “lost” album in that their previous release, ‘As On A Darkling Plain’ had been released to great acclaim, it took 14 years to follow this one up with the mighty ‘Sisyphus’, and is consequently often overlooked when people discuss their catalogue, and I only recently came across it myself, yet that is a real shame as this is a really nice release. Kenneth Skoglund had come in to replace Stan Whittaker, and formed a relationship with Strauss which is still ongoing to this day, bringing some additional bite, and helping him move the music into more commercial areas. The harmonies on “Felis Feminalis” are just ridiculous (in a nice way), and one can imagine this being a late Sixties number which has been given the prog treatment as it sounds like it is straight out of the SF scene and is simply a lot of fun. Maybe that is why this album is somewhat overlooked by many, it is fun and never takes itself too seriously and is not nearly as pretentious as many but instead is about producing music which in one sense is lightweight and immediate and in others is deep and broad. I know I am kicking myself for not coming across this far earlier, and if you have come across Ten Jinn on the back of their more recent releases then I urge you to track back to their earlier albums and make sure you do not miss this one out.

Progtector: January 2023

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