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|Ten Masked Men is a British death metal cover band who specialize in covering pop songs. The band was formed in 1996 when Mark ("The Mauler") and Dave ("The Chef") Hutson did a cover of Oasis' "Wonderwall" to annoy a friend. The song was much the same as the original, except it was played with distorted guitars and death metal grunts. It was recorded on a 4-track in a bedroom and was soon followed by "Stayin' Alive", "Into the Groove" and "Beat It". These simple recordings were played to friends and in some clubs, and became increasingly popular. There was still no band name at that time but the moniker Ten Masked Men was adopted after hearing a news broadcast about masked terrorists. In addition the band adopted wearing masks as it was felt that a masked appearance would fit in well with the idea of playing covers.
In 1999 the first CD, Ten Masked Men, was recorded and was given out free in their local club. It was evident that the music was becoming notorious and so the CD started circulating in top London clubs. A five-track EP was recorded later that year and Star Wars references came into play with the name The Ten Masked Men Strike Back, which was swiftly followed up with the second full-length CD Return of the Ten Masked Men in 2000.
It was three years until the next CD was recorded, entitled The PhanTen Masked Menace. A new full-length album came out in early 2008, entitled Attack Of The Ten Masked Men.
The band appeared on Channel 4 television in the UK on the late night show Born Sloppy, where special guest Jack Osborne had to guess the name of the tune that Ten Masked Men had just played. Due to legal issues the band were only allowed to play 30 seconds of each song, which were "Livin' La Vida Loca", "...Baby One More Time" and "Push It". The band also played live on the XFM breakfast show after winning a competition to appear on the B-side of UK Indie band Ash's rare "I'm On Drugs" vinyl.
Ten Masked Men have covered songs ranging from Frank Sinatra, to 1980s hits like Peter Gabriel's "Sledgehammer", and modern hits such as "Seven Days" by Craig David and "Something Kinda Ooooh" by Girls Aloud. Each album also features a song from the soundtrack to one of the James Bond movies.