Grand Prix

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Eduardo Rivadavia
Perhaps more than any other band even remotely associated with the stylistically broad New Wave of British Heavy Metal -- including the better-known Praying Mantis -- London's Grand Prix were keen to reproduce the typically American brand of radio-friendly melodic pomp rock commonly known as AOR to perfection. With Canadian-born lead singer Bernie Shaw fronting a battalion of capable backing vocalists in guitarist Michael O'Donoghue, keyboard player Phil Lanzon, and bassist Ralph Hood (drummer Andy Beirne completed Grand Prix's lineup), album opener "Waiting for the Night" immediately set the bar on high with densely layered vocal effects nicked precisely from the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Eduardo Rivadavia
Perhaps more than any other band even remotely associated with the stylistically broad New Wave of British Heavy Metal -- including the better-known Praying Mantis -- London's Grand Prix were keen to reproduce the typically American brand of radio-friendly melodic pomp rock commonly known as AOR to perfection. With Canadian-born lead singer Bernie Shaw fronting a battalion of capable backing vocalists in guitarist Michael O'Donoghue, keyboard player Phil Lanzon, and bassist Ralph Hood (drummer Andy Beirne completed Grand Prix's lineup), album opener "Waiting for the Night" immediately set the bar on high with densely layered vocal effects nicked precisely from the band Boston, and later on, additional highlights such as "West Wind," "Next to You," and the sweeping power ballad "The Very Last Time (Dreamer)" seemed to be paying similar tribute to Styx. Meanwhile, the nervous energy of "Mama Sayes" hinted at both Journey and Thin Lizzy (!), the tough riffs of "Feel Like I Do" harked back to early Foreigner (although it's still quite a stretch to associate O'Donoghue's forceful rhythm guitar and biting solos with the NWOBHM), and the drawn-out "Which Way Did the Wind Blow" flirted with the prog rock ambitions of Kansas, thanks to the jazzy piano and synthetic strings (almost disco-like at moments) employed halfway through. All comparisons aside, however, Grand Prix obviously included very accomplished songwriters in their own right, and the album's ten tracks generally passed AOR muster with their ever-shifting balance of brawn and brains, muscle and melody (the thing about AOR is you can't fake chops -- the production is too clear and unforgiving). Unfortunately, for 1980, Grand Prix may have been slightly ahead of their time in the punk, metal, and new wave-obsessed U.K., and their album never enjoyed proper support from RCA in America, where their sound would have been a natural fit for commercial radio; instead they were doomed to unfair also-ran status. Clearly, the album's numerous reissues over the years contradict this billing, and the 2009 Rock Candy edition notably tacked on a non-LP B-side, "Feels Good," and a pair of unreleased demos called "Room 155" and "Somewhere Tonight," to the delight of faithful Grand Prix fans.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/13/2001
  • Label: Zoom Club
  • EAN: 5036408004130
  • Catalog Number: 51

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Grand Prix Primary Artist
Andy Beirne Percussion, Drums
Ralph Hood Bass, Bass Guitar, Vocals
Phil Lanzon Synthesizer, Piano, Keyboards, Vocals
Michael O'Donahue Guitar, Vocals
Bernard Shaw Vocals
Michael O'Donoghue Guitar, Vocals
Technical Credits
Todd Rundgren Composer
Ray Russell String Arrangements
Grand Prix Composer
Roger Powell Composer
Kasim Sulton Composer
Greg Walsh Producer
Jon Wilcox Composer
Graham Williams Management
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