Sometimes plans change and sometimes it takes just a few people to change those plans. Such is the case with 10 Years, whose 2015 studio record- From Birth to Burial was planned to be their final studio album.
Fast forward two years to 2017 and the band is back with (How to Live) As Ghosts- one of their heaviest albums in years and the return of longtime/original members Brian Vodinh and Matt Wantland, who appear to have breathed new, fresh life into the band.
Their eighth album overall, 10 Years went through a stretch where they were still releasing very good, strong albums but something just seemed to be missing. The music wasn’t quite as heavy and saw the band experimenting a little bit- more of a progressive approach.
With (How to Live) As Ghosts, the band goes back to their straight rock roots for a record that strays away from the softer side of 10 Years and is 11 songs of stripped down 10 Years rock that is a breath of fresh air for longtime fans of the band.
“The Messenger” starts things off and doesn’t waste any time getting right into things. There’s not much of an intro to the song and singer Jesse Hasek’s vocals come in almost immediately and blow you away quickly.
Lead single “Novacaine” keeps things going with addictive and infectious chorus that lives up to every 10 Years expectation there is. It stands up with favorites like “Shoot it Out” and “Wasteland” and should be a quick staple of the band’s live set.
“Burnout” and “Catacombs” are a perfect lead in for “Ghosts,” which has that almost-trippy 10 Years vibe that’s separated them from the pack for so many years. Then there’s “Vampires” is another track that really makes you sit down and listen closely from start to finish. It’s so emotional and passionate that it stands out from the rest of the record.
In the end, 10 Years are back and stronger than ever. This is the record they needed to make at this time in their career. It’s a tough transition when you’ve made the decision to hang things up and then pick the pieces back up again.
If anything is clear, it’s that Vodinh and Wantland were exactly what the band needed right now and it shows in almost every aspect- musically and lyrically. If anything, this is the band’s strongest and most dynamic album since 2010’s Feeding the Wolves and definitely since going independent.
It looks like 10 Years are catching their stride again and it’s a lot of fun to see them so powerful again.