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Gran Turismo - The Cardigans

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Genre: Rock - Pop Rock / Artist: The Cardigans / Audio CD released 1998-10-19 at Polydor Group

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      21.05.2011 22:14
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      A fine piece of musical craft

      After entering the Swedish world of music production in 1994 with their debut album, 'Emmerdale', The Cardigans managed to gain a decent hold on their home countries music scene with a large fan base and good national chart position.
      It wasn't until 'Life' in 1995 that international recognition was reached, and shortly after, the signing to Mercury Records was secured to the delight of the band. 'First band on the moon' catapulted the group to platinum status in the US and Japan, and was a huge success in other countries around the globe - including the UK.

      ---
      Gran Turismo is the last album of the original band before a long hiatus began in which many of the members decided to persue successful solo careers. With the introduction of a darker feel to the songs, as well as more electronic sounds to suit the still popular dance/trance era, the bands fourth studio album is a convergence of interesting vocal performance and soothing melodic instrumental experimentation.
      1998's Gran Turismo features eleven tracks each between 2.18 and 4.54 - modest/average/radio-proof lengths.

      ---
      1. Paralyzed
      2. Erase/rewind
      3. Explode
      4. Starter
      5. Hanging Around
      6. Higher
      7. Marvel Hill
      8. My favoourite Game
      9. Do you believe
      10. Junk of the Hearts
      11. Nil

      ---
      The album begins with a full 26 seconds of semi-silence before the beautiful voice of Nina Persson (lead vocalist) fills your ears with a fresh, well balanced chill of sound. The use of melted guitar and electronic sound over a simple but effective drum beat works excellently. The vocals seem to dominate the higher end of the pitch spectrum, with the instruments and electronics focusing on low to mid range sound - bass notes and guitar chord progressions. It is an interesting way to format a group, but it really does work very well indeed.

      'Erase/rewind', "Hey, what did you here me say?", this track is perhaps the most well recieved and well known of the bands collective career. The chorus is striking in sound texture (...by this I refer to the use of rough acoustic instruments over soft voice) and is extremely catchy. I don't think I can picture anyone not finding this song both entertaining and sing-along-able!

      The album drops a semi-tone or two here, but it Nina still manages to usher a light of vocal sound from the depths of instrumental sound. 'Explode' reminds me of many scenes in films in which things are sad, destroyed, delapidated, but a scene in which hope is what the audience is pressured into producing.

      The album is forced into an upward spiral of quick tempo'd drum beats and complex guitar sections where electronic sound forms the main theme of background sound. But it's not until the beautiful 'higher' enters the playlist that tempo is once again lowered and vocals are more fearlessly focused. The electronic keyboard sounds are almost string like, and backing vocals of church-like proportion form in the distance, adding depth and meaning to the song.

      'Junk of hearts' is perhaps by favourite song of the album. Listed second from the end, its seems to have been recorded louder than the other tracks as if to wake you up. But still it focuses around a well strummed acoustic guitar and that spectacular range of vocal tone from Nina. The drums are considered more here than anywhere else in the album I feel, and I like to see them play a more vital role in a track - which they do.

      'Nil' seems to me like a pointless fill-in track at the end of a generally well formatted album. It's 2.17 of muffled instrumental/piano based sound with no appearance from Nina and no relevance to the structure or meaning of the album as a whole! - Why include it, seriously?

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      When considering the unique sound this band create, and the variance in tone and tempo from one song to the next, it's no wonder I've felt it necessary to rate this wonderful album with at least 4 stars. The only element to let this down for me is 'Nil', because it has nil to do with this collection of songs and gives me nil pleasure as a result.

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        30.04.2011 15:02
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        A subtly dark and atmospheric pop/rock album that is great to chill to

        The Cardigans are a Swedish band that formed way back in 1992, and were active from between 1992-1999 followed by another stint from 2003-2006. Their members include Lars-Olof Johansson (keyboardist/guitarist), Peter Svensson (guitarist), Bengt Lagerberg (drummer), Nina Persson (lead singer) and Magnus Sveningsson (bassist). To be honest I was never that keen on them as a band, especially after the hideously saccharine "Lovefool" (that made me want to cut off my ears with a machete every time it came on the radio) from the equally hideous film "William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet".

        However, as their fourth album Gran Turismo began to get much air play in my school's common room on account of it being rather sought after at the time I found some of their pop rock songs sneaking into my inner psyche and, despite my fears that I could be buying a stream of coma inducing "Lovefool", I gave in to popular demand and peer pressure and purchased myself a copy. As you can no doubt tell I'm still regularly conscious today so you can ascertain that a) the album did not consist of a never ending stream of coma inducing "Lovefools" and b) since I'm reviewing something from over 10 years ago there must be something good about it.


        Gran Turismo
        ~~~~~~~~

        All in all "Gran Turismo", released in 1998, was a very successful album having been certified platinum in the UK and selling over 3 million copies worldwide. Releasing only 3 singles, back in the days when it wasn't fashionable to release half your album to maximise profits, they charted from between #7 and #17 in the UK charts (when it was actually hard to get in the top 20) with the album as a whole peaking at #8. Purchasing this album was a bit of a onetime thing as I've never listened to any of their other albums so I cannot compare this album to any previous or future work so I'm just going to go solely on my impressions from this album alone.

        Gone is the horribly cheesy pop sound à la "Lovefool" to be replaced by a subtle, yet surprisingly dark and atmospheric album. No song particularly takes off into the stratosphere, but, with the exception of a few, the majority of the songs are of a teasingly slow tempo with a contrast of grungy guitars against an almost eerie electro-pop beat which make for an intriguingly relaxed album. This style definitely was suited more to my musically inexperienced teenage self before I discovered the world of metal and is probably a little too chilled for me now, but at the time when Indie music ruled, this was a great album. Definitely more pop than rock, this is a very catchy album that also has some real substance to it, raising it high above the boring pop doldrums.

        There are a couple of weak, forgettable tracks on this album shoved in at the end which make for a slightly poor ending. "Junk of the Hearts" I find to be a bit of a misfit on the album, it perhaps errs a little too much on the lightweight side and in my opinion has a slightly irritating, repetitive chorus so I generally avoid this one. The final track "Nil" is just a little instrumental piece that just allows the album to taper off. It has a weirdly melancholic and atmospheric quality to it which is pleasant and almost tranquil but isn't particularly inspiring and again another track I would choose to ignore. These two tracks aside, the other nine tracks on the album are all great with interesting lyrics, the sweet vocals from Persson and some really catchy tunes with a range of tempos and intensity.

        There are some very gentle and sweet sounding songs on this album, which are weirdly juxtaposed by some dark lyrics. First up is "Paralyzed" which has an ethereal beat to it and begins with a very gloomy intro contrasted against angry, scratchy guitars. Persson's vocals are not the strongest, but do have a very sweet tone to them which adds to the gloomy mood and she is able to express a good range of emotions to match the flows of the song so they fit perfectly to the style of the song. So, despite the sweet sound to the song, there is a darkness from the delivery of the lyrics - "When your blood runs dry you're paralyzed it will eat your mind" - all in all a subtly eerie song.

        Explode is another example of a pleasant and sweet sounding song through a beautiful harmonious tune and charming vocals being totally contradicted by the core message of the song. "Explode or implode we will take care of it". A little abstract but certainly could be interpreted as solving problems through violent methods. Despite the sinister edge to the lyrics this is definitely one of the more beautiful tracks off the album sound wise. In a similar fashion there is "Higher", another track with an incredibly slow tempo and a leisurely feel to it with emotional vocals and a lovely tune. This song however is more sad than dark with a melancholic feel to it. "I'm glad you came around today I sure need a good companion, I'm losing it but you're the same".

        Then there are the much more up tempo catchy and rocky tracks. "My Favourite Game" was the first single they released getting to #14 which kick started the success of their album. This certainly is one of the catchiest songs off the album and has the perfect mix between Indie rock and pop. This song probably has the greatest range of tempos with wonderful ebbs and flows and marks a departure from their electro pop sound of other songs with a much truer sound. "I had a vision I could turn you right, a stupid mission and a lethal fight. I should have seen it when my hope was new, my heart is black and my body is blue".

        "Starter" is another example of a more rocky song with less emphasis on the electro pop beat. This is again very catchy and has a moody atmospheric feel to it and some great guitar hooks. With more great vocals from Persson, this song, whilst maintaining that gloomy feel, actually sneaks in a slight air of hopefulness which has been missing from the entire album so far. "Turning the pages I used to hang on to I was young and I have changed my mind. And I'm leaving everything behind".

        Likewise, their second single "Erase/Rewind" was again more up tempo but reverted back to their familiar electro beat sound. Again, another superbly catchy song with a great chorus, it has a pleasantly relaxing feel to it and is another example of a excellently composed song which slowly builds in intensity through both the music and Persson's vocals which begin to take on a stronger level of bitter emotion as the song progresses. "I said it's fine before, I've changed my mind I take it back, erase and rewind".

        Ah, onto my favourite song from the album "Do You Believe". For me this song is cynicism at its best and always makes me smile in a slightly sardonic way.

        "Do you really think that love is gonna save the world
        Well I don't think so, I just don't think so
        Do you really think that love is gonna save your soul
        Well I sure hope so, oh yes I really really hope so
        But I don't think so"

        There are some awesome grungy guitars on this track that give it a more rocky and disturbing feel enhanced by the lyrics and Persson's understated yet slightly derisive vocals. This song certainly captures the essence of the album.

        Finally the really weird and dark tracks from the album are "Marvel Hill" and "Hanging Around". "Hanging Around" was the third single to be released and got to #17 in the charts and has an almost chilling feel to it with an odd electro beat that almost makes you feel like you're at a deranged circus. This song also has some quite rocky and grungy moments to it with some captivating guitar hooks and a catchy chorus, but it is Persson's vocals again that holds it together with her sweet tone intermingled with dark undertones - "I wonder what it's like seeing through your eyes. You've offered me to have a try but I was always late".

        But you ain't seen (or heard) nothing yet with "Marvel Hill". This has wonderfully weird guitars with ominous chimes in the background that give the song a fascinatingly disturbed feel to it. Once again Persson uses her sweet voice in a creepy way to great effect which gives the song fantastic atmosphere. "Strange to be on Marvel Hill I've walked some years to find, I know there is a piece to fill the gap I have in mind" - definitely the weirdest song from the album, but also one of the more compelling.

        So, as an album firmly lodged in the Indie pop genre, "Gran Turismo" is a great album. Minus a few weak links it is a wonderfully atmospheric, dark and gloomy album with a few bright spots which, despite all that, is actually a great album to chill to and certainly stands the test of time. Simply, it is great quality pop which has real substance and a dark enough edge to elevate it above your typically fake pop album. It won't rock your world by any stretch of the imagination but it is a great album to lose yourself in. Recommended for nostalgic Indie pop/rock fans.

        Track Listing
        ~~~~~~~~

        1. Paralyzed - 8/10
        2. Erase/Rewind - 9/10
        3. Explode - 9/10
        4. Starter - 8/10
        5. Hanging Around - 8/10
        6. Higher - 8/10
        7. Marvel Hill - 9/10
        8. My Favourite Game - 9/10
        9. Do You Believe - 10/10
        10. Junk of The Hearts - 6/10
        11. Nil - 5/10

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          22.05.2007 17:01
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          Just the ticket for long car journeys, or to relax to after a long day at work.

          The Cardigans are a 5 piece Indie/Pop/Rock from Sweden, and ‘Gran Turismo is their fourth album which was released in 1998. I seem to recall this album actually being the first CD I ever bought, and while it’s not been played quite so much recently it’s still an album I like to listen to every once in a while.
          I had heard of them before this as some of you may remember one of their earlier songs ‘Lovefool’, which appeared on the soundtrack to Baz Lurman’s Romeo + Juliet. When I saw this album in a shop I didn’t hesitate in buying it after just hearing that one song of theirs. While the album doesn't blow me away, I certainly don't regret my purchase.

          The first track on the album is ‘Paralyzed’ which captures the essence of the song beautifully, as you’ll find yourself stopping your activities just losing yourself in its haunting sound and thought provoking lyrics. The song is very mellow with the drums and guitars in perfect harmony, allowing Nina Persson’s delicate voice to take over the song that will leave your breathless.

          Up next is the toe tapping ‘Erase/Rewind’, while not a track you’ll be shaking your booty too you’ll find it an upbeat one compared to the previous track. The introductions of the acoustic guitar, mixed perfectly with a steady beat on the drums, and add to that Nina’s silky vocals and your left with a track that wouldn’t go a miss on your car stereo on a hot summer’s day.

          Enchanting melodies is what this band does best, and this is clearly the case with the third track ‘Explode’. Nina’s angelic voice mixed with the heavenly sounds of an organ make this track perfect for helping you to wind down after a hard day at work. My one fault with ‘Explode’ albeit a small one is I felt the drums were unnecessary, while not ruining the track for me it wasn’t in keeping with the relaxing feel the rest of it had.

          One of my favourite tracks off the album would have to be ‘Starter’, with its more edgy feel to it than the previous tracks. It starts off slowly with just the beat of a drum and Persson's childlike voice sweeping over it. This track however builds up and while not explosive, the electronic guitar mixed with the drums makes this a livelier track to get you moving and perfect for a long road trip.

          To follow that little beauty up is another favourite of mine and that is ‘Hanging Around’. This track like the previous seems them break more into the pop/rock territory, where they seem just as comfortable as they do with their more laid back ones.
          With an array of instruments featuring electric guitar, drums and keyboard to name but a few, they all blend together to produce a track that fans of Garbage are used to hearing. It’s just one you’ll find unable to keep your feet still too, as towards the end it builds up into such a frenzy it’s seems world’s away from the first track off the album.

          The saying goes what must go up, must come down and that it very explicable to the rather lack luster ‘Higher’. While I enjoy their slower more angelic tracks, this one just doesn’t do anything for me. It’s hard to put my finger on what it is that I don’t like about this one, as Nina’s voice is again faultless and the music is certainly relaxing to listen to. Listening to it now for the third time while writing this review I think that it’s because nothing stands out enough to make a lasting impression. It’s sleep inducing but in a bad way, and while other tracks on the album are similar they just seem to induce more life into them.

          Take it or leave it is very apt for ‘Marvel Hill’, as while it certainly picks up in tone from the previous track, it just takes too long to get going. While listening to it I get the sense that nobody could decide on whether it should be a melody or a rock/pop track. Both genres without a doubt sound good on its own, but mixed up the track just ends up messy.

          Things pick up again with a well known track of theirs ‘My Favourite Game’. This one has a very raw feel to it, it’s passionate, it’s edgy, it’s all the things that you want it to be when you want to feel invigorated. Nina’s voice is huskier this time around which works perfectly with the rousing guitars and clash of drums, making this one a huge hit with the public who were left unimpressed with some of their previous efforts.

          Up next is a track that I was unsure of when I heard it for the first time, but have grown to quite like now. ‘Do You Believe’ is similar to ‘Marvel Hill’ as it features a mix of sounds, but while that one didn’t work for me this one has got the blend just about right. Its blend of harmonizing melodies mixed with the raw sound of guitars and the drums works surprisingly well, you’ll find yourself listening to this over and over again.

          Sadly the penultimate track isn’t quite as memorable but is still worth a listen on a hot summer’s day. ‘ Junk Of The Hearts’ is another track that just takes too long to get going, which is a shame as at the heart of it is a lively pop song missing out on the potential of being anything more than average. The problem is while the rock/pop aspect of it is well produced and very moody sounding, the rest of it is just too laid back and doesn’t work in harmony with the other sounds.

          To finish the album off we are left with something quite different, but quite remarkable at the same time. While only last for just over 2 minutes, ‘Nil’ is a beautiful instrumental track with a somewhat haunting sound to it. The piano is played in such a way that it won’t fail to send shivers down your spine. It’s beautiful because it’s so simple, no vocals, no loud drums or guitars, just the faint sound of a piano in the distance making it a very contemplating track.

          So there you have it, my review on an album which one the whole I would wholeheartedly recommend albeit for a few weak tracks. It’s certainly not an album that stands out from others in its field such as Garbage, but just like that group they know how to produce some surprises. For fans of The Cardigans you may be interested to know that the band is currently producing their seventh album, which apparently has been postponed until 2008.


          The Cardigans are: –

          Peter Svensson – Lead Guitar
          Magnus Sveningsson – Bass
          Bengt Lagerberg – Drums
          Lars-Olof “Lasse” Johansson – Keyboards and Guitar
          Nina Persson –Vocals

          The Cardigans “Gran Turismo” 1998
          Available on Amazon for £4.98 and from £1.27 used.

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            25.10.2001 17:23
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            The Cardigans. How strange. Gran Turismo. How great. Lots of people don't like this album. I don't see why. Lots of people think this album is a collection of weak B-sides. I don't agree. The band is most famous for a track that doesn't represent their talent: how can 'Lovefool' from the Cardigans, a track from the Romeo & Juliet soundtrack fully represent the greatness of this album? In short, it can't. This album is incredibly classy, and blurs the pop/rock dividing line that so many have walked down. A techno screaming guitar sound dominates with the vocalists searching voice. From the sultry pop number, 'Erase/Rewind' through to rock special 'My Favourite Game', this track has hits. Yes, it has hits. But, there is also an undiscovered part of The Cardigans. The album is slightly overproduced, but still great. The 'just out of aural focus' introduction with it's spacey tones of track one, 'Paralyzed' also warms you in to the album, and the very bizarre mumbling 'Nil' track kicks you out. The first three tracks take the slow, mournful techno guitar approach, until 'Starter' promptly rocks in with it's 'this is the start that I know I'll believe in, I'm leaving everything behind'. It's soft aahing, and kick-ass guitar take everything back to a better time. This album is a must-get. If you love good pop and rock, you'll like this. If you like a crossover between pumping guitar music and electronic mumblings, you'll also love this album. It takes the best of electronic / techno screamings and mixes it with brilliant guitars and lyrics. Buy this album. And do it now. -bigbtommy- ps. thanks for all the good words about my MND opinion, it was difficult to write, but it makes me feel so much better after writing it.

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              11.04.2001 01:38
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              Gran Turismo is the Cardigans third album and I am sad to say that the rot has set in. When they first appeared they were a breath of fresh air with each new release displaying unique pop sensibilities. While they haven't quite hit the dirge of say a band like Texas yet, their sound has become somewhat paralysed. The 2 singles 'Erase and Rewind' and 'My Favourite Game' flatter to deceive. The latter was needlessly played to death on the radio and MTV. Initially it was a sweet burst of melody and energy but like low-grade sugar it can sometimes leave a bad taste in the mouth if it is overused. That chunky guitar riff is quite addictive but after a time it does begin to grate. Good music needs to be handled with care, use sparingly and over time you'll appreciate it more. 'Erase and Rewind' takes a little while to sink into consciousness and when it does it turns out to be remarkably slight. Ok it could pass for nice background music in your local coffee-house but outside of this it is quite dull, lifeless and has some of the most inane lyrics imaginable. The Cardigans have it in them to conjure lots of pretty little tunes like 'Rise and Shine' but stuff like 'Erase and Rewind' sees them take a step backwards in order to appeal to an ambivalent public. Elsewhere 'Starter' is just short of MOR and had me reaching for the skip button. I just can't stand lazy music and this song is the Cardigans letting a somewhat malfunctioning autopilot take the controls. 'Marvel Hill' is deceptively enjoyable but its attractive kooky weirdness is ruined by a risible but overwhelming fog horn sound that runs right through it. Gran Turismo is not a complete failure however. 'Explode' has a beautiful forlorn quality that makes it endearing. Nina Persson's voice is crystal clear and sympathetic and the backing instruments sound gorgeously out of time. 'Hanging Around
              ' is repackaged Garbage (the band that is!) but at least it has a certain oomph that is lacking elsewhere on the album. Persson's morning skylark vocals are an enjoyable feature on all the Cardigans albums. Unfortunately on Gran Turismo they don't come close to saving the day because more often than not the guffaw that surrounds them is just not ear catching enough. 'Higher' for example is just so twee, the accompanying sounds so risible you'd imagine they were generated by a third party gently using the hand of the sleeping guitarist to strum the strings of his guitar. What disappoints most about Gran Turismo is that it sounds so sickly produced and packaged. It's a bit too wet behind the ears, like the band were usurped by their marketing department's dream of bigger sales. The album certainly gave the Cardigans a larger audience but this compromise means that the lively spark that defined their early recordings has been quenched for the time being at least. My advise if you are still into the cassette format and own this album, is to make a copy of the remnants of quality, then rewind and erase.

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                04.04.2001 01:59
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                This is my first opinion about a music product, but I'll give it a go. The Cardigans are my personal favourite band at the moment, so I figured it would be best to talk first about music I know and music I like. I'm listening to the c.d Gran Turismo right now and to let you all know- I think it's really good. Firstly, if you didn't already know, The Cardigans are a super swedish group who many people label as indie/pop. Their front singer is Nina Persson. A very intelligent muiscian who has the most angelic voice. Other members of the band include Magnus Sveningsson, Peter Svensson, Bengt Lagerberg and Lars-Olof Johansson. If asked to describe what their music is about then I would say it is mainly covers general life and modern opinions. It's not mushy love songs (except Love fool from Romeo & Juliet, but don't worry, that song's on a different Cardigans album) or angry rock or anything. It's just well, kinda cool. When listening to it it makes you very laid back. Here's a quick note on each track on the c.d (there are 11 tracks on the c.d.): 1. Paralyzed 2. Erase/Rewind 3. Explode 4. Starter 5. Hanging Around 6. Higher 7. Marvel Hill 8. My Favourite Game 9. Do You Believe 10 Junk Of The Hearts 11 Nil My personal favourites, which are also perhaps the most popular to fans, are Erase/Rewind, Explode, Higher and My Favourite Game. The album lasts 42 minutes 30 secs in total and I would say is definately value for money. The songs have a nice mellow beat and it is easy to move about to them. They're not too upbeat and not too fast. Just perfect. Go out and buy if you like music like Sheryl Crow, Travis,etc. A good album.

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                  01.11.2000 14:53
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                  I'm not a huge fan of Abba. I like some of their music but with the multitude of tribute bands and rehashes of their classics, I feel the music has been shoved in to the ground. Another irrelevent comment is that I like chocolate. You see, while The Cardigans may come from a similar part of the world their music is a world apart. There is so little to compare. I bought the Gran Turismo album because I found it at a Gran price of £5.99. I had heard quite a few of their songs and since I liked those I thought I would like the album. It was so cheap I couldn't go far wrong. Well, I discovered that I liked rather a lot of it actually. The first track I had heard before, briefly, and thought at the time it was fantastic. I had no idea that it was by these people so I was well pleased. Of course there were lots of songs I knew and which I liked already but these were accompanied by some other gems. However, all was not rosy. There are a few tracks which I will politely call 'strange'. I don't know what noise they were after but it doesn't strike me as music. It's a mixture of detached 'singing' and mental electronic stabs. A pity, but just a dent in an otherwise cracking little album!

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                  25.10.2000 15:38

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                  This album is excellent. The songs on here range between completely in your face rocky kind of stuff, and then quite mellow soft songs. The song writing is first class, and every inch sounds like the group know how to play their instruments and play them well.. It's good music, good songs, good melodys and good vocals throughout. You just can't help but like this album. My Favourite Game is by far one of the best songs on the album as is also Erase/Rewind. If you don't already own this, then buy it, you won't be disappointed.

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                  16.10.2000 23:04

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                  Most of the people that have written opinions on this album recommend it, well... this is an album that I was lucky enough to win. With the lead singers voice being so feminine and light I thought that I would quite like it. After all I did like the song 'Erase & Rewind' and 'My Favourite Game'. I also think the single with Tom Jones was well done also - but that isn't on the album. When I got the album and sat down and listened to it, 'fraid to say that I won't be listening to it very much! The two songs that I mentioned have to be the best, other than that I found the music style to be quite depressing. If you're down, it's a great album to play! The music is a cross between grungy and rock. I like her voice, unfortuantely this album doesn't agree with me!

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                  10.10.2000 18:08
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                  No, before you say it, I don't like Abba. Their music is nowhere near as good as the Cardigans, unless you like your music cheesy that is. I bought this album on the basis of the few singles that had been released from it, "Erase/Rewind", "Hanging Around" and "My Favourite Game". I loved all 3 tracks, and was interested to see how the rest of the album would compare. First impression is disappointing though - the album is only 42 mins long - the shortest album I've seen on CD by quite some margin. The tracks themselves are good though, my favourite being the excellent "Higher". As a rock group, the Cardigans have a lot going for them, a good lead singer, and a nicely innovative sound. Lyrically the album is a touc on the depressive side though, they don't really sound like smiley happy people to me! A good album for rock fans then, but hopefully their next album will have a bit more in the way of tracks.

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                    10.10.2000 02:33

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                    This album is one of the treasures of my CD collection as are 'The Cardigans' one of my favourite bands. Nina Persson's vocals are a dream to listen to, the lyrics are inspirational and the music is scintillating. 'Erase and rewind' is beautifully done without sounding sickly and 'My favourite game' is a fantastic 'perfect to drive to' song, in fact 'ITV' used it in the closing titles of the 1999 Formula one championship so that should say something about what kind of song it is. A great all round album by a great band.

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                    19.09.2000 09:54
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                    Gran Turismo is an excellent album with a good mix of both fast paced and slow, melodic tracks. The lyrics are always sublime from The Cardigans, and everyone knows "Favorite Game", made famous for its links with Gran Turismo the computer game on the PlayStation. Erase and Unwind is another track on here that didn't do as well as you'd expect in the British charts, even though it is undoubtedly the best track on there. If you haven't heard The Cardigans work before, this album is a good a start as any, it's not dance music, more chill out, but it represents a good mix of both what this group are capable of and what we will be getting from them in the future.

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                    10.08.2000 23:31
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                    This album is great! I bought it on the recommendation of a friend, and after hearing 'My Favourite Game' when it first came out. Initially I was a little dubious, I'd bought this album on the basis of a single song! My first reaction to the album was: eunh... It was OK... Then after a while I realised just how good the album was! There are songs like My Favourite Game and Erase Rewind which are just fantastic for driving along, but the whole album is a great thing to listen to when bopping along with it playing in your walkman. Desperately somber on occassions, and peaking in others, this is an album that can really make your day when you just want to plug in and shut out the rest of the world. The other good thing is that you can work to it without it overly ditracting you. Great album - a must buy. Shame it has been relatively ignored by a significant chunk of the population despite the popularity of My Favourite Game.

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                    19.07.2000 22:50

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                    'Grand Turismo' is one of the treasures of my CD collection. The Cardigans are one of my favourite bands, so I was really looking forward to this one and I certainly wasn't disappointed. Nina Perssons' vocals are strong and beautiful, the lyrics are inspirational and their music is a scintillating mix of rock and melody. 'Erase and rewind' is clearly a step up from the likes of the more pop'ish 'love-fool' and 'My favourite game' is a perfect 'to drive to' song as ITV showed when they played it at the end of the F1 world championship. This, in my opinion, is their best album to date but don't take my word for it, go get it for yourselves.

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                    14.07.2000 21:43

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                    Hmm. I'm vaguely disappointed by this. Favourite Game and Erase/Rewind are great songs in my opinion. The lazy, hazy, smoky Erase/Rewind fits in more with this album though. It is pretty laid back, using Nina Persson's vocal talents to the best. And the music isn't run of the mill. They aren't afraid to experiment. But, I prefer something a little more upbeat. That said Explode blows me away every time I hear it. A definite contender for top 5 all time album tracks. Post-club come down, rather than pre-party excercise.

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                • Product Details

                  Disc #1 Tracklisting
                  1 Paralyzed
                  2 Erase / Rewind
                  3 Explode
                  4 Starter
                  5 Hanging Around
                  6 Higher
                  7 Marvel Hill
                  8 My Favourite Game
                  9 Do You Believe
                  10 Junk Of The Hearts
                  11 Nil