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Grand Design - Viva La Paradise Award winner

Grand Design
Viva La Paradise
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 27 September 2018, 12:01 PM

What the Glam Metal/Hard Metal scene had in the 80’s that makes it so non temporal, a form of music that is undying? It’s not so hard to answer: the melodies, the feeling, the happiness that permeates the songs of this specific genre carry are immortal. Anyone can hear success as “Living On a Prayer”, “The Final Countdown”, “Don’t Treat Me Bad” or “Youth Gone Wild” today (and all of these are songs that are 30 years old, or more) and be still touched by them. Those are the influences that guide the work of the Swedish quintet GRAND DESIGN on “Viva La Paradise”, their latest release.

It’s a fine blend between Glam Metal/Hard Glam from the 80’s with the AOR insight that was extremely common at California in the 80’s, and that is strong on Sweden and Finland on the last years. Of course they show excellent accessible melodies and a refined instrumental technique (just enough as the songs ask for), but the quintet sounds as a solid unity, and how lovely is the energy that comes from its work. The sound quality tries to mix the modern and clean sound from the present with the sharp and raw influences from the 80’s. And as the genre itself never gets old, they got a very good production, so their songs are sounding as hooking as charming as if we were in the golden years of Hard/Glam Metal, but with the actual sound clarity, and they have chosen a very good set of instrumental tunes as well.

And when the music comes from the speakers, you better beware, because as you hear this work once, you’ll be caught by “Viva La Paradise”. The nasty energy and catchy melodic lines of “Face It” (excellent guitars both in solos and riffs, along with fine duets), the charming and seductive chorus of “Rawk ‘N’ Roll Hysteria” (what a very good work from vocals and backing vocals) and of “Viva La Paradise”, the contrast between ballad parts with heavier moments on “Aim for the Heart” (beware, for it glues on you easily), the excellent work on the tempos shown on “It’s Only Straight from the Heart” (bass guitar and drums are creating a solid and strong work here), and the down ‘n’ out rhythm of “Too Late to Fall in Love” can be pointed as their best moments, but all the album is a piece of Chiclet that won’t unglue from you for days.

The old and good days were never gone, so listen to “Viva La Paradise” out loud, and let GRAND DESIGN show you what they got.

Originality: 8
Songwriting: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

1. Face It
2. Rawk ‘N’ Roll Hysteria
3. Viva La Paradise
4. Don’t Ice Me Out
5. Aim for the Heart
6. I Would Be the Wind
7. Love Shouldn’t Hurt
8. It’s Only Straight from the Heart
9. Too Late to Fall in Love
10. U Can’t Fool Love
Pelle - Vocals
Janne - Guitars
Dennis - Guitars
Stefan - Bass
Perra - Drums
Record Label: GMR Music


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