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Grand: Second To None
Click to Purchase Grand - Second To None at Amazon

Grand: Second To None

AOR Melodic Rock
5.0/5.0

Emerging from the fertile melodic rock soil of Sweden, Grand was formed in 2022 by award-winning singer and songwriter Mattias Olofsson as trio including guitarist and producer Jakob Svensson (Wigelius) and drummer Anton Martinez Matz. They dropped their self-titled debut album in the same year to some strong acclaim by genre fans. Dangerdog Music Reviews considered Grand one of the top AOR albums of 2022. Wherein I said, "For pure AOR melodic rock, Sweden's Grand and their debut album hits the mark, thanks to creative song writing from a trio of gifted and veteran musicians who understand the genre better than most."

Grand - Click For Larger Image

Grand

Encouraged and inspired by the wide appreciation, the trio embarked on recording their next album, Second To None. Olofsson describes the new album as a "creative leap led us to traverse uncharted musical landscapes, embracing a myriad of influences ..." With their second album in hand, Grand will be making their live debut at the Malmo Festival in July 2024.


Regarding the new album, Grand strays little from the roots of its predecessor: this is classic AOR melodic rock. The band cites classic influencers such as Starship, Foreigner, Toto, Mr. Big, and Giant, as well as the prolific Scandinavian AOR universe. Yet, after a few listens, I found Grand offering a bit more punch to their music. Songs such as All Or Nothing, Rock Bottom, Achilles's Heel, and Crash And Burn rock heavier than most. But the AOR groove still abides. It's notable within Lily, Out Of The Blue, and the quite catchy When We Were Young.

Perhaps merging both rock punch and AOR vibe is Sweet Talker and Kryptonite. The former is a fast frisky rocker that offers a fine sax solo in the latter third. The latter offers a juxtaposition of rock punch and AOR vibe in a duet with Swedish musical star Nina Söderquist, and saxophone accents from Kristian Brink.

Summing up, Grand's second effort, Second To None is another vigorous and entertaining AOR melodic rock workout. Perhaps a bit heavier than their debut, but both impressive and enjoyable all the same. Quite recommended.


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The Take Away

Grand's second effort, Second To None is another vigorous and entertaining AOR melodic rock workout. Perhaps a bit heavier than their debut, but both impressive and enjoyable all the same. Quite recommended.

Support the band, click the link below to find the album in your favorite format.

Purchase Grand - Second To None at Amazon
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