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Manning - Number Ten (2009)

Guy Manning is a lucky person – he seems like don’t know what creative crisis is. During 10 years maestro is permanently has been issuing albums with proper (sometimes remarkable) quality. Latest anniversary release named simple - "Number Ten". Design of CD looks pretty ordinary in comparison with past Manning’s works designed by Ed Unitsky, Belarusian artist. But behind simple facade you can see vivid interior – let’s look at it in details.

The importance of this project  for Guy is seen already by cast of performers. Besides  mastermind  there are 13 participants including his friends and colleagues. Any music lover meets his music expectations with this mini-band orchestrated by Manning. Jethro Tull influence that was in many of his past works, is reduced to zero in this album. "Number Ten" is a professional (no doubt) composition of drive and lyrics. Within usual expressive methods, Guy retrieves very interesting ways, and every track on CD gets its original tone. Rotating styling mode makes 63-minutes glided away. Generous artist’s palette is shining with art rock colors ("Ships"), light blues shade with prog-dramatism ("The Final Chapter"). Orchestra revelation ("An Ordinary Day") changes  with rock-cabaret elements ("Bloody Holiday!"), mixed vocal duets are beautiful ("Valentine's Night"), small brook of folklore become big river of symphonic rock ("A Road Less Travelled"), simultaneously showering rhythmic fields ("Another Lazy Sunday"). And final 16-minutes "The House On The Hill" like the “wind rose”.  

Resume: perfect gift for modern British prog-rock fans and Guy Manning, in particular.