Vision Valley is a mediocre attempt by The Vines to recapture their debut album's success. Sure, they still manage to keep their catchy beats and guitar riffs, and Craig Nicholls continues to yell on the louder tracks and chill out with the more somber tracks. However, the album fails to live up to tracks such as "Sunshinin'" from Highly Evolved.
When Highly Evolved started streaming out on the airwaves in 2002, a hopeful sentiment of a rock revolution was optimistically projected by the music moguls themselves, MTV. Along with The Hives, The Strokes, Doves and The White Stripes, a new wave of rock took over in 2002 with the Vines storming across America furiously touring and promoting their debut album. Four years, moderate success and Nicholls' Asperger's syndrome diagnosis later, the Vines are back.
These Aussies have put together a short combination of Nirvana, Guns 'N' Roses and their own early sound to create an album that is not my personal favorite of the year, but they certainty know how to please their fans. Guitarist Ryan Griffith continues to create melodic beats, and drummer Hamish Rosser continues to keep the trio's sound together, supporting Nicholls' occasional enticing lyrics.
After listening to the record multiple times, I am not entirely convinced that this is an amazing must-purchase; nevertheless, with tracks such as "Don't Listen to the Radio," "F*k Yeh," the more relaxed "Vision Valley" and "Take Me Back," the disc is worth a chance.
"Don't Listen to the Radio" brings up a good point about how sometimes the music industry falls into a rut and spits out artists that were molded for commercial success with the likes of Lindsay Lohan and Hilary Duff. Sometimes commercial radio just repeats the same mundane formats, as Nicholls yells out "Don't listen to the radio / Hear something that ya ready know."
"Vision Valley" has the more relaxed, reflective sentiment. Weaving in some metaphorically inspired lyrics, Nicholls' asks: "Are you here forever standin' by the road / With the benefit of feelin' on your own / Where the river ends the sun is comin' down."
If you are looking for an all-around amazing album, Vision Valley might not satisfy your appetite. But if you just want a little appetizer, take advantage of "Don't Listen to the Radio" and "Vision Valley."
Rating: 2 out of 5