On 29th March 2004 at 12:32 Anonymous 1170 wrote...
Dan, I think your off your rocker mate, the 2nd song is the best on the album, what were you listing to ?
By The Vines
The first line sung by Craig Nicholls pretty much sums up the entire listening experience for 'Winning Days'. "That's the start, the middle and the end," he intones on track one, 'Ride', and indeed the start, the middle and the end of this new release are extremely good.
'Ride' for all it being a fairly obvious quiet-loud rocker is good fun and opens with all the squealing guitars of 'Highly Evolved'. The title track six is a melodic acoustic-led tune, complete with dreamy harmonies and spacey lyrics. Album closer 'Fuck the World' finds the Sydney quartet at their most blisteringly confrontational. A distorted bassline provides the backbone for the song and Nicholls really lets it rip, screaming most of his lines with what sounds like incandescent rage.
On the flipside, track two 'Animal Machine', is quite poor - the sound of a band stretching a weak riff throughout an entire song. 'Autumn Shade II' suffers in a different way; its very name invites comparison to its 'Highly Evolved' counterpart and loses out with surreal lyrics and lacklustre delivery.
There are tunes that get halfway there - the rest of the album doing a decent job of salvaging the damage done by the weaker tracks. 'Sun Child', for all the trippy, borderline meaningless lyrics, is just too pretty to dislike and 'She's Got Something to Say to Me' with its Beatlesy melody lifts the album up.
Lasting just under forty minutes, it seems 'Winning Days' really is that 'difficult second album. I did enjoy listening to it, but not as much as its electrifying predecessor. There are some great highs and some substandard lows to be found on this record - but maybe The Vines have already prepared for any backlash. As Nicholls yells in 'Fuck The World', "Don't feel supreme. Nobody got it."