On the Vines' third full-length outing, the Australian alt-rock band has evolved without sacrificing any of its youthful energy. While singer/guitarist Craig Nicholls has clearly outgrown some of the hooliganism that made him notorious in the group's early days, he still exudes plenty of energy with his signature raspy voice and razor-sharp six-string lines, as best evidenced on the fierce, melodic first single "Don't Listen to the Radio." Though a few tracks on VISION VALLEY take a punkier approach (see the propulsive "Gross Out"), those tunes are tempered by dreamier moments such as "Spaceship," revealing that while Nicholls's songwriting is tighter and more varied than before, it's just as thrilling.
What the critics say...
Entertainment Weekly (p.60) - "[H]is feral, melodic garage punk is refreshing." -- Grade: B+
Q (p.118) - Ranked #68 in Q Magazine's "100 Greatest Albums of 2006."
Uncut (p.129) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "VISION VALLEY confounds all expectations, with tracks like 'Anysound' and sublime final five-minute wig-out 'Spaceship' providing confirmation of Nicholls' gifts."