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Grand General – “Grand General” – [Rune Grammofon]

Naysayer   2/15/2013   A Library, CD

Grand General (album of the same name) is a sort of Norwegian alternative super group made up of 5 prolific musicians. This is contemporary prog rock/prog jazz with a a hint of Norwegian folk music. Think Mahavishnu Orchestra in the snow. The six cuts cover a lot of musical territory. Very orchestral. Very melodic. Lots of rhythm. Big solos. With music like this the violin really stands out and Ola Kvernberg’s violin playing is no exception. His violin and the guitar lines really play with and around each other adding to this very full sound. But it is the bass and especially drums that get my attention. Kenneth Kapstad (from Motorpsycho) really pounds away on tracks 1 & 2 and adds beautifully subtle nuances on tracks 3 & 5. Not all of these songs are full sounding. There are quieter pieces and quieter moments, but still very rich. On the Rune Grammofon label, this is produced, tight music. But don’t let that scare you.

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