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Grand Illusion - 2004 Ordinary Just Won't Do

ARTIST: Grand Illusion
ALBUM: Ordinary Just Won't Do
LABEL: Escape Music
YEAR: 2004


LINEUP: Anders Rydholm - guitars, bass, keyboards * Peter Sundell - vocals * Per Svensson - vocals * Ola Af Trampe - guitars * Christian Sundell - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Devils Advocate * 02 The Best Is Yet To Come * 03 Gone For Good * 04 Heaven Or Hell * 05 New Beginning * 06 1982 * 07 Pull Me Down * 08 Love Lies Buried * 09 Back To Yesterday * 10 And This Is Why * 11 When You Were Mine * 12 On Time


This Swedish outfit released one of the best albums of 2002, with their impressive 'View From The Top' opus. For me it is still a regularly played CD today, that album demonstrated what happens when you persevere with your music - despite thinking all your opportunities had dried up years before. As was the case with Anders Rydholm, the key main behind this quintet. Starting life as a west coast oriented outfit, Grand Illusion changed tack on their 2001 set 'The Book Of How To Make It', their music becoming a melodic rock/pomp lovers dream! After taking a year off, Grand Illusion return in 2004 with their latest 'Ordinary Just Won't Do', and the quality-meter hasn't dropped off one bit in between times. If anything, the band have solidified their sound, with the addition of permanent guitarist Ola Af Trampe, and Peter Sundell's vocals as powerful as ever.. perhaps too over-powering at times.

The Songs
Certainly the songs are a touch heavier in my opinion, Af Trampe giving the band ample beef in the guitar department. The opening pair of 'Devils Advocate' and 'The Best Is Yet To Come' is witness to this muscled up sound, more of the guitars and less keys. The Dokken like riffs precede 'New Beginning', the track grinds out mainly, though the vocals and chorus try to offset its predominant metal structure. Take a listen also to 'Back To Yesterday', this could be prime-time Honeymoon Suite, those Derry Grehan guitar riffs have been exported to Sweden! Ballads are a category this band excel at. When Sundell hits high notes with clarity and precision it doesn't sound much better. 'And This Is Why' is one classic example, while 'Heaven Or Hell' is their showcase power-ballad, this track is a winner.

In Summary
The songs on this CD are not as immediate as those found on its predecessor 'View From The Top'. The arrangements border on melodic metal, and I'm not sure this sat very comfortably with Rydholm, who since disbanded Grand Illusion to focus on his new project Code, which by all accounts is back in the west coast environment that he is more comfortable with. Notwithstanding, all of Grand Illusion's albums are all well worth picking up.

Related Articles
Grand Illusion - 2001 The Book Of How To Make It
Grand Illusion - 2002 View From The Top
Grand Illusion - 2002 Interview: Anders Rydholm
Grand Illusion - 2004 Ordinary Just Won't Do
Grand Illusion - 2010 Brand New World
Grand Illusion - 2011 Prince Of Paupers

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#1 | sabace on August 03 2008 16:38:28
excellent this is one great melodic lp!

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