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Grand National - A Drink And A Quick Decision 2007 Bonus Track torrent

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On their second disc, Grand National offers neo-folk textures and dance club trots with melodic acoustic guitar undertones and delightful chimes and synth effects that induce folk musings like The Thrills with embellishments of synth-pop circuitry and serried club beats. There are periods of Hot Chip's thump-funk and Jatun-powered space rock in the songs. The club beats and electro-pop glides show a new wave tinkering reminiscent of Scritti Politti, Talk Talk, and Yaz as the lounging voicing of lead singer and guitarist Rubert Lyddon adds to the music's consonance and appeal generated by synth maestro Lawrence La Rudd. It's music from the public's collective consciousness burrowed in new wave's annals, and yet there are contemporary treatments done to the synth barrages that relate a modern mode. It's music for the dance club crowd but there is also a contemplative feel in the music that allows the listener to reflect on what they are hearing in the songs.

Numbers like "Reason To Hide In," "By The Time I Get Home There Won't Be Much Of A Place For Me," and "Cut By The Brakes," show space rock influences fossiled with electro-pop panels and synth-pop carps. The neo-folk clusters in songs like "Weird Ideas At Work" and "Tongue" have inseams of club beats and smooth coasting vocals like Peter Bjorn And John with electro-pop flambeaus. "Going To Switch The Lights On" has a gypsy-dance groove pervading from the rhythms and horn-tinted tones plodding along the melody, whereas the tune "New Space To Throw" moves to a calypso-bongo beating and shimmied synths winnowing the uptempo pivots. The synth-based segments have charisma and a harmonious flow, which also gives the songs a disadvantage causing them to sound similar. The motley synth pastures display spangled patterns with a myriad of variables that fall into a monotonous acid rock repetition like the light funk steps on "Close Approximation", having electro-pop clamps with a semblance to LCD Soundsystem and Tiesto.

There are a few pop ballads like "Joker And Clown," "Pack All The Things," and "Part Of A Corner" which have a sensory instinct for soft flowing melodic drifts. The momentum is serene with cooling guitar strokes and dainty breezy bass beats creating a neo-folk version of James Blunt. The coffeehouse piano melody playing along on the final track "Part Of A Corner" has a lounging tempo and a chillout magnetism. The album displays nicely polished neo-folk tunage that shows influences of new wave eloquence and present day electro-pop stereo-glyphics. I found the album more entertaining than conveying a cosmic or universal meaning, but the music could be very meaningful for the band members whose songs allow the listener to hear the lyrics with Lyddon's suave vocals, though most of the emphasis is on the synth-pop esplanades and dance-club fixtures.

The English duet has made a fanciful club-pop album that fits in any forum from large arenas to living room size nightclubs. It is music for the enjoyment of the masses and revitalizes what new wave artists were doing in the '80s. I may not be able to decipher a cosmic meaning for the lyrics but the music has a cosmic essence.

- hybridmagazine.com

This U.K. duo barely blipped the radar here with its 2004 debut, "Kicking the National Habit," a sublime, catchy melange of the Police's rhythmic pop, New Order's dance-driven rock and the Bee Gees' knack for melody. "A Drink and a Quick Question" is more diverse, touching on the homespun feel of "Tusk"-era Fleetwood Mac on lovelorn laments like "Joker and Clown" and conjuring intriguing disco/rave hybrids like "By the Time I Get Home There Won't Be Much of a Place for Me" and the churning "Close Approximation." The Police resemblance remains, but the group has found a way to put a more original spin on it with such tracks as the gently zooming "Weird Ideas at Work," "New Space to Throw" (complete with chicken scratch guitar and synths) and opener "Reasons to Hide In," which sounds like an indie rocker's idea of "Saturday Night Fever." Billboard - June 2007 A Drink & A Quick Decision is the kind of album you'd hear while enjoying cocktails in an über hip lounge. This album is suitable for all moods, whether you want to mindlessly let the beats take over you while driving, dancing around in your room, or crying in the corner.

- amazon.com

Leaving barely enough time to settle since their B-side and remix compilation, Grand National unleash their second album of danceable indie pop on an expectant world. The first thing that struck me about ‘A Drink And A Quick Decision’ is that it’s very similarly stylistically to their debut. On ‘Kicking The National Habit’, at least half of the songs bore the hallmark of a cracking single and there’s much the same here. Then again there’s also a healthy quota of slow-burners; featuring more considered moments. There’s a similar feeling of the excitement of the night out, followed by the regret of the morning afterwards.

If you’re after great songs then ‘A Drink & A Quick Decision’ boasts plenty of them. ‘Weird Ideas At Work’ possesses hooks-a-plenty both in the verse and the chorus, ‘By The Time I Get Home…’ wastes no time in going straight for the dancefloor whilst ‘Going To Switch The Lights On’ is wonderfully rhythmic and bouncy. These are all topped by the irresistably infectious ‘Close Approximation’. On a more cerebral level, ‘Animal Sounds’ and ‘Cut By The Brakes’ have their fair share of early-80s synth sounds but these are songs that reap rewards the more you listen to them. Towards the end of the record comes the downbeat material; ’Joker & Clown’ and ‘Pack All The Things You Need’ are signs of real maturity. All these factors make ‘A Drink And A Quick Decision’ possibly the thinking man’s dance album of the year.

- leonardslair.co.uk

Artist: Grand National
Album: A Drink And A Quick Decision
Date Of Release: September 2007
Genre: Indie Pop, Alternapop, Electronic
Bitrate: VBR --alt-preset extreme

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