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Grand Delusion : Supreme Machine

With this sophomore, Sweden's Grand Delusion have delivered a groove-laden Stoner masterclass.

'Supreme Machine' sees Sweden's Grand Delusion return with their sophomore album, following on from 2015's 'The Last Ray of the Dying Sun'. After some line-up changes, it's a fine return to the studio with a darker and heavier direction. A range of influences are thrown into the mix, but essentially, it's an album steeped in the sound of '70s Metal and Space rock, with liberal doses of prog and good old down and dirty bluesy hard rock thrown in. The result is a stomping powerhouse of an album that deserves to gain Grand Delusion some serious attention outwith their native Sweden.

There's an energy and an electricity that sizzles through 'Supreme Machine' from beginning to end. From the lumbering riff of opening track, 'Just Revolution', there's an infectious groove that's impossible to resist. With some bluesy licks and a powerful classic rock vocal style, there's nothing particularly ground breaking or original happening, but when something works this well, who cares? There's no need to reinvent the wheel when you can take a tried and tested formula and deliver it with such panache. The wonderfully titled 'Mangrove Blues' is, as the name suggests, infused with a swampy, bluesy feel that adds a bourbon-soaked hint of the Badlands of the South to an absolutely stomping Stoner Metal riff. 'Hey man, do you read the news/somethings up in the house of blues' drawls vocalist/guitarist Björn Wahlberg in a barnstorming powerhouse of a track.

Clocking in at an epic 12 minutes 13 seconds, the album centrepiece is 'Trail of the Seven Scorpions'. Despite its lengthy duration, it never outstays its welcome. In fact, this reviewer never wanted it to end. It's a dark, trippy heavy psych nightmare that rolls up some of the finest elements of 70s metal, rock and psychedelia into a potent blend that takes the listener on hell of a journey. Shades of Sabbath can be heard in the malevolent opening few minutes, before then mellowing out a touch with a prolonged instrumental passage with synth effects and a hypnotic melody reminiscent of Hawkwind's 'Hall of the Mountain Grill' album. I haven't heard a finer Stoner Rock track in 2017, and, as Halloween approaches, it's unlikely that I will.

Riffs abound on 'Supreme Machine'. Monstrous, monolithic beasts infected with a bluesy swagger and delivered with just the right amount of fuzz. There are darker, more aggressive moments too, though; 'Infinite' is a relentless, thumping attack on the senses with chanted backing vocals that give the song an epic feel that brings a different flavour to the album. On the whole, though, this is bluesy Stoner nirvana that doesn't put a foot wrong at any point during its relatively brief 39-minute duration. Built around the stunning central pillar of the album that is 'Trail of the Seven Scorpions', Grand Delusion have delivered a groove-laden Stoner masterclass.

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Reviewer's rating: 8.5/10


Tracklist :
1. Just Revolution
2. Mangrove Blues
3. Trail of the Seven Scorpions
4. Imperator
5. Infinite
6. Ghost of the Widow McCain

Duration : Approx. 39 minutes

Visit the Grand Delusion bandpage.

Reviewed on 2017-10-31 by Nick Harkins
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