B. E Jackson | Pennsylvania | 05/27/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Get This Thing on the Move" and "Please Don't Worry" are solid proof Grand Funk Railroad had some talent, despite some people who like to constantly put the band down for being inferior copycats of other bands. I LOVE those two songs. Also I believe "Paranoid" has some memorable guitar solos and the final track which is nearly 10 minutes long is a MASTERPIECE ("nah nah no no no no no NOOOOO!!!!"). I love that part.
Some may even claim this is the ultimate Grand Funk album because it sounds so much like a garage rock album with a muddy, old and dated sound thanks to the way the album was recorded. It never fails to amaze me how a muddy-sounding rock album from the late 60's can have SO much personality, and I believe this may be why Grand Funk could be considered the best album they ever made.
It's hard for me personally to decide which of the bands albums is their very best, but I have to tip my hat to a really solid straight-up rock album the band made with THIS one."
Their best studio LP
Jeffrey Smith | Dallas, TX USA | 01/11/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Their best studio effort, for high energy raw, garage, punk, hard rock get this one. Then get their first 'On time and third 'Closer to Home'. They are the best of their studio output. The first live album is by far the best thing they ever put out..."
A classic from a band on the verge of superstardom
Mike | San Jose, CA | 01/30/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Grand Funk, coincidentally, shares a distinction with KISS. Each band recorded and toured behind their first three studio albums, which sold to an appreciative and loyal audience, and each issued a "double live" album as their fourth that put them through the ROOF.
Both bands were "you had to be there" acts...the frenzy experienced during live shows didn't fully find its way into their initial studio offerings. Where they differ, however, is that Grand Funk's "Red Album"...the second...and Closer to Home, the third...hit harder on impact and have had a greater staying power than those of their "hottest band in the world" counterparts.
Grand Funk had humbler, working class roots, regardless of the ear-splitting volume of their music. They were the guys from Flint Michigan who made it out, who didn't get jobs at the auto plant, who worked and played hard and tasted success...until Terry Knight cashed their checks through his victorious lawsuit and they had to start all over again.
"The Red Album" begins with "Got This Thing On The Move," which immediately engages the band's "power trio" style, carved several years earlier by acts like Cream and The Jimi Hendrix Experience. "Please Don't Worry" starts off like an over-amped "Born To Be Wild" before slipping into a mid-tempo groove. "High Falootin' Woman" works off of a shuffle-based blues riff. "Mr. Limousine Driver" is the first track that really offers a glimpse of the sound that would follow on "Live Album"...fat, meaty riffing coupled with slow, cocky vocals from Farner, with everything adding up to classic Grand Funk. On the 8-minute "In Need," you've got a "custom made for live performances" vehicle with ample stretching out and solos. "Winter And My Soul" shows that the band had more up its sleeve than sledgehammer riffs...things like melody, shifting time signatures, and songwriting far more complex than they were given credit for at the time. "Paranoid," in the world of "album oriented" FM radio, was probably the most heavily played song from "Live Album," and the "Red Album" version naturally lacks some of the energy found in its more familiar counterpart. Same for "Inside Looking Out"...it sounds fine here, but it got bigger and meaner in concert halls. "Nothing Is The Same (Demo)" is an added CD bonus, with some "mind-expanding" trippy guitar work from Farner and a Don Brewer lead vocal. The "2002 Remix" of "Limousine Driver" is nothing to write home about, but at this point, you're at the end of a rock-solid album sounds as good today...maybe even better than...it did on its release over three decades ago.
And like all GFR fans, I still hold out hope that Brewer / Schacher / Farner will mend fences one day...with Craig Frost, if he's willing and available...and give the world one more taste of the REAL Grand Funk.