Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Grand Funk Railroad - Grand Funk (1969 us, stunning heavy classic rock, 2002 bonus tracks remaster)

Grand Funk Railroad's 1970 somewhat eponymous album, their second for Capitol, is characteristic of the classic rock radio sound that would permeate the airwaves of the late 20th century. Grand Funk Railroad was a seminal force in giving the friendlier side of the heavy rock sound its charm and making it stick. 

Built on fuzzed-out blues riffs, simple lyrics, and at times seemingly unnecessary jamming, Grand Funk's songs are mild in nature. Slightly toothier than Foghat or Bad Company, Grand Funk's major influence is from the loose, blues-based power trio formula of bands such as Cream and the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Grand Funk combines rawness with radio-friendly melodies and vocal harmonies that would become their trademark sound. 

Hordes of bands to come, from Foreigner to Bon Jovi, would emulate Grand Funk's sound and style, focusing on good-time rocking material while attempting a few token social commentary pieces. This is a great album as far as early hard rock goes, and as Grand Funk Railroad would move farther and farther away from the type of roughness and loose arrangements found here, it is well worth picking up as an example of one of their early efforts.
by Jeff Schwachter
1. Got This Thing on the Move - 4:38
2. Please Don't Worry (Don Brewer, Mark Farner) - 4:19
3. High Falootin' Woman - 3:00
4. Mr. Limousine Driver - 4:26
5. In Need - 7:52
6. Winter and My Soul - 6:38
7. Paranoid - 7:50
8. Inside Looking Out - 9:31 (John Lomax, Alan Lomax, Eric Burdon, Bryan "Chas" Chandler)
9. Nothing Is The Same (Demo) - 5:39
10.Mr. Limousine Driver (Extended Version) - 5:28
All songs written by Mark Farner except where noted.

Grand Funk
*Mark Farner - Guitar, Piano, Harmonica, Vocals
*Don Brewer - Drums, Vocals
*Mel Schacher - Bass

1966-67  Terry Knight And The Pack - Terry Knight And The Pack / Reflections (2010 issue)  
1969  Grand Funk Railroad - On Time (2002 remaster and expanded)
1970  Grand Funk - Closer To Home (japan remaster with bonus tracks)
1970  Grand Funk Railroad - Live (japan remaster)
1974  Grand Funk - Shinin' On (Japan extra track issue and 2014 SHM remaster)

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