Five of the Best: 10cc

British art rock band, 10cc, was one of the most influential groups of the 1970s and early 1980s. And they are set to light up the stage in New Zealand.

10cc was well known for its art rock style, coupled with catchy pop music. This mix is often attributed to two songwriting teams within the one band; one half of the group wrote predominantly pop songs, while the other half was experimental and artistic. The result, as you can see from the five songs we have listed below, was pretty special.

Every member of 10cc was a multi-instrumentalist, making the members true musicians. During their time together they wrote, produced and recorded many worldwide hits, including the ones we have chosen below. Narrowing down the work of a great band is always very difficult, but we think we have selected a great list of 10cc songs – we hope you agree!

The Wall Street Shuffle

The Wall Street Shuffle is the 10cc edition of an anti-capitalist song. It is laden with references to money and the wealthy players in the USA such as Rothschild and Howard Hughes. The track was released in 1974 and was featured on the band’s album, Sheet Music. The song was a top ten hit in the UK, the Netherlands and Ireland and remains a crowd favourite to this day. 10cc still regularly plays the track at live concerts and we think it is one of the finest examples of 10cc and their unique and playful sound and song-writing ability.

Wall Street Shuffle 1974

Rubber Bullets

Released in 1973, Rubber Bullets was the first UK number one hit for 10cc. When released the song courted controversy as some thought it was a reference to the rioting in Northern Ireland. The band however said it was a playful homage to old films such as Jailhouse Rock. The track is well known for its double speed guitar solo – a technique used for Tubular Bells. The lyrics are very tongue-in-cheek as well, which was not uncommon for 10cc. Despite the controversy over the song’s title, Rubber Bullets was hit song for 10cc and remains a catchy tune to this day.

10cc - Rubber Bullets

The Things We Do For Love

The Things We Do For Love was a major chart hit for 10cc following its release in 1976 on the band’s Deceptive Bends album. It was a number one hit in Canada and was top ten in the UK, USA, Australia and Ireland. The track is a classic pop song with a twist; the unique 10cc sound that has made them one of the most popular bands of the 1970s. The vocal backing track is a hallmark of 10cc and can be heard in The Things We Do For Love.

10cc - The Things We Do for Love

Dreadlock Holiday

Dreadlock Holiday is a great example of 10cc experimenting with different sounds and genres. The reggae song was released in 1978 on the band’s album, Bloody Tourists. The song tells the story of a tourist in Jamaica and is based on band member Graham Gouldman’s own experience in Barbados. The song heavily references cricket and reggae music in an attempt to show the locals they share similar interests. The song was a number one hit in the UK and charted well in other countries around the world. We think this song is a classic and a great example of 10cc at its absolute best.

10cc - Dreadlock Holiday [totp2]

I’m Not in Love

I’m Not in Love has a unique, ethereal sound that, for its time, was unlike anything we had heard before. The track was released in 1975 on the band’s studio album, The Original Soundtrack. The band originally recorded the song in a more traditional way, but it was then decided to replace the beat with a wall of voices – the predominant sound that can be heard. To give the effect of dozens of voices involved an onerous process whereby one note sung by the original band members was over-dubbed many, many times. The result was both commercially and critically popular with the song rocketing to number one on UK music charts and the group receiving a prestigious song-writing award. I’m Not in Love was a key factor in 10cc bursting onto the international stage and remains a classic song to this day.

10cc will perform at the ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre on November 10 and at TSB Showplace on November 11. Click here to purchase tickets.