The Vines - Winning Days

The Vines
Winning Days


First Appeared in The Music Box, June 2004, Volume 11, #6

Written by John Metzger


In this post-British Invasion, post-punk, post-grunge fourth generation of garage rock, The Vines doesnít break new ground so much as it wraps nearly 40 years of raging, guitar-driven mayhem within a plethora of pop-fueled hooks. In 2002, the Australian ensemble burst onto the scene with its much lauded debut Highly Evolved, but with the release of its sophomore outing Winning Days, the band seems to have fallen back to Earth, landing with a frustratingly dull thud. The problem is that a large portion of its new album seems sanitized for mass consumption by the youth of Western civilization. Each profanity-laced outburst, each thunderous beat, each screaming guitar lick, and each hazy ballad feels carefully contrived to meet expectations without offending the groupís existing fans and commercial suitors. As a result, thereís little growth and little depth to be found because The Vines virtually maintains the status quo. Thatís not to say that Winning Days isnít an enjoyable effort. It grooves along quite nicely, blending the sounds of Supergrass, Midnight Oil, Nirvana, and Super Furry Animals into an infectious and occasionally intriguing collage. Yet, the albumís many flaws unfortunately also demonstrate that The Vines isnít the second coming, as many initially proclaimed the group to be. starstarstar

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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!


Copyright © 2004 The Music Box