Review: The Vines

The Vines
““Highly Evolved””
(Capital Records)

To be completely honest, I wasn’’t really tuned into what was going on in the music industry until I was jogged awake by a unique sound originating from down under.   Australia, specifically Sydney, spewed out upon the water-starved earth a refreshingly surprising incarnation: The Vines.  Even though this album, “Highly Evolved”, was released last July, it’s still as fresh as when it was released!  Categorizing this band is extremely difficult since they play so many different styles so damn well.

The most well-known songs, “Outtathaway” and “Get Free” are harder rock with some punk influence, mostly resembling a mixture of Queens of the Stone Age meets Nirvana.  As you progress throughout the album you find “Autumn Shade”, “Sunshinin”, “Homesick” and “Mary Jane” which are so reminiscent of Beatles material it’s scary.  Killer Beatle-like chords and vocals plus the fact that Craig Nicholls, in the right circumstances, can sound like John Lennon take “The Vines” into another dimension.  Add in the remaining songs like “Factory”, a little ditty sounding like NOFX’s “Johnny Applesead”, and you have a kick-ass album.

Surpassing the songwriting abilities are the performances by the individual members: Excellent all around.  The band’s website is full of music clips, videos, band info, tour links and much more.  You have to stop buy the site to take in what you can.  Once you have heard “The Vines” you will go out and purchase the CD.  I mean, how often does an Australian band make it big?  Not too often, but when they do they leave a mark.