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The Grand Mal – II

The Grand Mal
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 15 November 2022, 3:34 PM

Hailing from Oxford, GRAND MAL presents their newest album here titled “II.” The album has twelve songs. “Another Replicant” is the first. It’s a slow, fuzzy, psychedelic introductory piece. “Petit Mal” is the first proper track. By contrast, it’s a much faster song, almost Punk-like it its delivery. The bottom end is still very heavy but the chorus is catchy…when you have lived as long as I have, you have nearly heard it all…an interesting combination of Doom Metal and Punk Rock. “Shallow” is more in line of what you think about when hearing Doom…but without the prophetic and ominous elements.

“Rule my Soul” is another psychedelic offering of wah-wah infused leads with a heavy bottom end. This song is a bit darker than others, but the band is clearly having fun with their music. It’s doomy, but without the lamenting that often comes. “Smash the Grave” is a jovial jaunt into a den of thick smoke and spices. Once you go down and enter the beaded door, you are sure to stay a while and partake. “Hellbound Blues” features a simple riff as the other songs do, but is effective when combined with a catchy chorus.

“The Lingering” is a charming little number, like standing on the porch in the south on a hot say and watching some old guy in overalls strum bluesy and soulful tunes like he was still in a band. “Seas of Glory” is a weighted number with some slick and sludgy riffs and pep in the drums. They deliver another catchy chorus which is unusual in the genre. “Empire of Vultures” is another short, and soothing song, with psychedelic sounds. Just when you think you are coming off your trip, you take another hit. “Bloodmoon” closes the album. It’s a fairly jovial song, with acoustical strums, and light vocals. In sum, it’s Doomy, but without the obligatory suffering. This was just what I needed today.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

1. Another Replicant
2. Petit Mal
3. Shallow
4. I Live for Today
5. Rule my Soul
6. Smash the Grave
7. Lost in Time
8. Hellbound Blues
9. The Lingering
10. Seas of Glory
11. Empire of Vultures
12. Bloodmoon
Dave-O – Vocals, Tambourine, Keys
Ryan Cole – Guitars
Elliot Cole – Drums, Percussion
Rob Glen – Bass
Lee Cressey – Guitars
Record Label: APF Records


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