Grant Duncan – Alliance – Review

Grant DuncanGrant Duncan is quite an interesting character. He’s a guitar player originally from NZ/UK who is currently living and playing music in Tokyo, Japan. Grant is also the frontman for Tokyo-based indie pop combo Pavement Candy which perform regularly around the Tokyo live arena. He was also previously the songwriter/bassist and vocalist for NZ rock band The Audio Justice who were finalists in the NZ 2013 Battle of the Bands competition. Grant Duncan is writing and recording some amazing music over there in Tokyo and I’m going to tell you about a few tunes.

Grant Duncan – Alliance

First impressions? This guy is really good. Great sound, awesome guitar work, catchy melodies and a rawness that’s hard to match. Grant Duncan is one of my new favorite artists. He recently released a new album called Alliance and I’m reviewing 3 of the choice songs. Grant tracked all the guitars, vocals, bass and keyboard backings for the album at his home studio in Inagi, Tokyo. Drum tracks were recorded at Sunmusic Studios in Chofu, Tokyo.

Grant sites his musical direction as “the classic grooves of UK pop rock including The Kinks, The Kooks, The Beatles and the Stone Roses.” The song “Won’t Be Leaving Town” is a great example of Grant’s sound. It’s melodically raw with singing melodic guitars and the perfect drum beat to fill it all in. The chorus is so catchy that I find myself re-singing it in my head throughout the day after listening.

“The Road” is another tune that is available on the Alliance album and I must say, it’s another goody! So far, everything I’ve heard from Grant is roadtrip playlist worthy for sure! My favorite part about this one is the tension it builds. Starting out with just a guitar, then slowing building the groove with guitar, drums and bass leading into the verse and chorus. Then, they repeat the process while adding an organ and jamming out the rest of the song. I think there is something broad that general listeners of rock ‘n roll will appreciate.

You know, there is just something classic about Grant Duncan’s music. He truly has an authentic sound while not covering up his influences. Overall, the Alliance album’s sound quality is really good. I think the song lacking a little bit is “Never Ever Said.” I think the bass is way too high in the mix which makes it hard to hear everything else. And it’s not that the bass is too loud everywhere, just in certain spots. Sounds like something a re-EQ or remix may help. Otherwise, this song stands on its own. It’s not necessarily my favorite one however. I’m not sure why really, maybe it’s just not as catchy as the others. And, that bass issue is really bothering me. Nothing against Grant, but I think this one could be re-thought a bit. Please remember when I’m constructively critical to a tune, it’s with the utmost sincerity and honesty! I still think the album overall is super excellent and deserves a full listen if you’re into the raw indie rock scene that’s sprinkled with UK/NZ influences coming out of Tokyo 🙂

Like I said before, Grant Duncan is one of my new favorite indie artists! This guy is really good! I encourage you to check him out for yourself and let me know what YOU think! Make sure to get in touch with Grant Duncan on social media and let him know that you heard his music here first on Indie Music Plus! As always, thank you for reading and continuing to support indie music of all genres!

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