CD Reviews

Grand Design - 'Time Elevation' Hot
Written by James Gaden     April 08, 2010    
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Swedish act heavily influenced by Def Leppard.


“Plagiarism: The act or an instance of taking the thoughts, writings, inventions of another as one’s own.” It could be said that this applies to this here album, so is the content within. Put simply, this sounds like Def Leppard. Very much so. And you know what? It’s absolutely brilliant!

It sounds like this album could have been released between ‘Pyromania’ and ‘Hysteria’, the sort of sound that Sheffield’s finest have slightly moved away from. And not just the music, it’s the production as well. Move over Mutt Lange, this is the real deal. Everything is here, the wall of sound guitars, the big booming drums, and the multi-part harmonies too! But although this is very Def Leppard sounding, Grand Design also have a little quirkiness about them that reminds me of their fellow Swedes House Of Shakira, so it’s not just a complete soundalike, in the way that, for instance, Airbourne sound like AC/DC.

Mainman Palle Saether (Vocals, Production, Composition) has created a great album here, with very catchy songs, just check out the likes of ‘Love Sensation’, ‘Air It Out’, ‘Piece Of The Action’ (no, not the Sweet cover!) and ‘Sad Sound Of Goodbye’. And the guitar work of Peter Ledin and Dennis Vestman is worthy of a mention, maybe not in the same league of Messrs. Collen and Clark (or Campbell I suppose), but very good nonetheless.

Not entirely original then, but if you like Def Leppard, and you don’t mind somebody else doing Def Leppard, you don’t wanna miss this.

Ant Heeks


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Comments (1)add comment

Franco Cerchiari said:

Once the listener gets done hitting the replay button trying multiple times to get past the fantastic opening track "Love Sensation," coming into ear shot is a web of guitars, vocals and hard hitting drums that make up this excellent melodic rocker. Along with the above references to Def Leppard, (which is completely true on the tracks "No Time For Love," and "Piece of the Action,") it can also be said that the music heard here is also similar to Final Frontier, Two Fires and Ted Poley's excellent solo release, Collateral Damage. Vocalist Palle Saether's voice is a hybrid of the high reaching vocals of Rob Moratti, (Final Frontier, Saga, Phenomena, Northern Light) the smooth rock style of Ted Poley (Danger Danger, Prophet, Pleasure Dome,) and of course the great Joe Elliot.

It's worth a mention that even if yes, the CD does resonate with the same feel many other bands have, if the music you are hearing captures your interest from the opening bars, that CD becomes an automatic "get right now." This is a must have for followers of smooth sounding, harmony heavy melodic rock. But check out the grooves of "Sheik Iddup," the gentle keyboards with the accompaniment of acoustic on "Love Will Know," and the similarities to Final Frontier's 2004 The Second Wave on "Slugged Out."

All in all, a terrific release. Let's hope Grand Design keeps things on this path, for even if they did take the sounds of Ted Poley, Final Frontier, Two Fires and of course, Def Leppard, they're on the right path to what should be a solid career.
September 18, 2013
Votes: +1

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