|10:21 - . (Heavy Rock)|
Part of New York City only by namesake, Staten Island is often referred to as the forgotten Borough. The 60 square mile island is not accessible to Manhattan by any direct tunnel, bridge, or subway line, only a ferry.
Literally, so close and still so far away from the now-legendary rock clubs that most city rockers clamor to play, guitarist Spider and bassist Marco Messina sought similar minded recruits in a scene very different than downtown Manhattan's. Wanting to break the back of their paradoxical suburbia, when Ten Twenty One finally came together in late 1998, it did so with rhymes and a loud roar.
The aggro-groove of their latest release, In the Red, is dark, rhythmic and melodic. And while the same can be said for the Korns and Limp Bizkits of the world, 10:21 clearly stands out from this heavy pack. Like a jigsaw puzzle, where every piece connects to finally form a picture of a garden scene, each song is masterfully arranged out of obtuse odds and ends. The 10:21 picture, however, is far from a pretty.
Opening track, "Datelines Crowded," begins with a melodic call and response between guitar and turntable scratches. A mid-tempo rock groove soon follows and for a brief moment you can tap your foot; that is until it all comes crashing into the gutter-tuned grind of a lone guitar.
Ten Twenty One straddles a precarious line between the ugly and melodic. Four of the six members are contributing vocalists with frontman Tanka leading this gruff assault. Adam Pellagrini's vocal responses, however, are always melodic and almost hypnotic bringing to mind the vocal styling of Perry Farrell's "Nothing's Shocking" era.
While contemporaries like Rage Against The Machine and At The Drive-In fling flaming arrows pointed with socio-political shout-outs, 10:21 lyrics are just as forward but far more cerebral. Holding a mirror in one hand and a magnifying glass in the other, the band not only encourages, but also insists that you look at yourself and then dig deep beneath your skin at the very essence of your motivations.
In the midst of the punch and pull between melody and aggression, six guys from New York City's forgotten Borough have stumbled upon the perfect blend of hardcore, hip hop and metal and made it their own. There is no doubt that 10:21 will only get louder until the whole world is left cross-eyed from their earnest assault.
Tracks available for download (if any):
In The Red http://www.gigamerica.com/band/downloads/1021/inthered.rm
About You http://www.gigamerica.com/band/downloads/1021/AllAboutYou.rm
The Other Side http://www.gigamerica.com/band/downloads/1021/theotherside.rm