Ten Kens - Winter Tour 2008

Canadian alternative rockers, Ten Kens, opened up for fellow North American band A Place To Bury Strangers to an eager crowd at London’s ICA and it was pretty obvious why those that decided to move into the venue area were keen to see the Toronto four piece.

Aside from guitarist Dean Tzenos cool looking beard, the music was impressive from the start, with their slow build up songs which were all powerful throughout including the slightly softer tunes. Lead singer Dan Workman’s vocals were at times slightly drowned out but then the style of his vocals were different to how you would expect, slightly higher pitched and strained but despite sounding weird it fitted in perfectly with the harmonics of the band. There was some more standard rock screaming by Dean Tzenos on some songs to keep the traditionalists happy; he was later was seen mixing it with the crowd at the front during the headline act.

Stand out songs of the set have to be rocky 'Refined' and the finale 'Spanish Fly' with its Spanish intro leading into a chaotic song. Those that decided to come in early to see the openers were very happy, those that stayed in the bar clearly missed out on a class act.

A well done has to be said to the sound and lighting people at ICA for getting it right and helping to create the perfect atmosphere during Ten Kens show, good to see when a venue does actually care about all the bands and pull out the stops.