Winning Days Review

artist: vines date: 04/05/2008 category: compact discs
vines: Winning Days
Released: Mar 23, 2004
Genre: Rock
Styles: Alternative Pop/Rock, Post-Grunge, Garage Rock Revival
Number Of Tracks: 11
 Sound: 9.2
 Lyrics: 7.6
 Overall Impression: 8.4
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (5) 2 comments vote for this album:
overall: 6
Winning Days Reviewed by: UG Team, on march 25, 2004
0 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: The album opens with "Ride" and "Animal Machine," two half-hearted concessions to their successful but less interesting hybrid of grunge and garage rock. Winning Days' flat opening wouldn't be so bad if the rest of the album made up for it, but once again the Vines fail to deliver. The rest of the album delves into the pop side that made the band seem a little deeper and more diverse than some of its rock revivalist contemporaries; this is still the side of the band that produces the most substantial music, but this time around the returns are greatly diminished. "TV Pro" mixes the trippy and rocking aspects of the band's sounds fairly well, but its impact is thwarted by the syrupy production that coats most of Winning Days. Most egregiously, "Autumn Shade II" comes across as a cover of Highly Evolved's "Autumn Shade" instead of its sequel, its title telegraphing the dearth of ideas on the rest of the album. As disappointing as Winning Days is, it's not a total loss. "She's Got Something to Say" might be slight, but its '60s pop pastiche is still entertaining, and "Fuck the World," a live favorite that might as well be a Highly Evolved outtake, is brash and simplistic, and therefore one of the most immediate songs here // 6

Lyrics: Aside from some slightly more complex song structures, these songs just aren't particularly notable or memorable. // 6

Overall Impression: Two years after their single "Get Free" seemed to be everywhere in one form or another, the Vines returned with their second album, Winning Days. The criticisms leveled against the Vines by their detractors ? that they were just aping Nirvana and didn't have ideas of their own ? apply far more to Winning Days than their debut "Highly Evolved" CD. Highly Evolved, in some ways, a leap forward in style and frenzy. Though, when it came to the melodies, Winning Days is definitely a departure; it leaves behind not only the melodies but the messiness and ambition that made the Vines distinctive. // 6

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overall: 8
Winning Days Reviewed by: MarshGTR182, on april 14, 2004
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: I'm a big Vines fan. Especially of their instrumental music. I love how the music changes from hard rock (Rock, F.T.W., Animal Machine) to soft rock (Winning Days, Sunchild). Some riffs Craig Nicholls writes are simple such as in ride, the solo is just bending one note at a time over and over but it sounds cool, so I'm sold with that. And a lot of his soft mellow music is very different then most riffs, which I think is awesome. I think the music has improved since the last album made. // 10

Lyrics: Nicholls's lyrics are nothing special. But the way he sings it (well screams it really) is so cool. They work well with music written. I just think the lyrics could have a deeper meaning. And especially with Autumn Shade 2, that was really the only song I was disappointed with, because I enjoyed the 1st one better on their Highly Evolved CD. It's still a decent song, but it could be better. // 6

Overall Impression: The Vines are one of my favorite bands. I love the style changes. My favorite songs are Ride, Animal Machine, and Winning Days. I think it's worth buying and if I lost it I would buy it again. But before I'd buy I'd make that you like The Vines first, listen to a few of there songs first, don't just pick it up randomly, because these guys are a band you either like or don't like. // 8

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overall: 10
Winning Days Reviewed by: unregistered, on june 27, 2004
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: When I heard the first song, I thought, "wow this is good" as I listened on it got better. The guitar is amazing, although Nicholls is no Yngwie, so don't get mad at him because he cant play 32 notes per second. The styles are grunge, and 60 psycodelia rock. The innovations is nicholls seamless binding of grunge and pyscodelic rock. Great album. // 10

Lyrics: This album starts with Ride, which is like SLTS of Nevermind by Nirvana. The next song, Animal Machine has a catchy, droning riff. TV Pro begins with drums and blasts into a whiny-like verse and "a-whoa ho oh oh" and back into the trippy lyrics with the psycodelia guitar. The all acoustic track Autumn Shade II has the lyrics barely spoken over over a light voice on top of the C-G-E-A appregiated chords. Evil Town has a blaring guitar that slows down for the verse, similar to TV Pro. Winning Days falls about where the middle of a vinyl would fall, where a band would shift its sound. Shes Got Something To Say To Me has the sound similar to a Beatles tune, with the bright chords over and a lightly distorted chorus. Rainfall has an acoustic intro and the qualities of a folk song in the verse, the chorus repeating the intro. Amnesia has a slow tempo drum intro and a single note guitar part. the vocals are barely droned and the verse is followed up with a a lightly sung part "a-ha-ha". sun child is another acoustic song with a country-ish verse. the chorus is a little high, but still a good song. The final track, Fuck The World, is Nicholl's angst of the whole album built up and released, showing his hatrid for technology and pollution, and in the final verse, "fuck the world, don't" shows uncertiany of his angst. The entire album is well rounded. The vocals are very melodic and catchy. // 10

Overall Impression: This is a good follow up to their debut album, and my favorite songs were Ride, Autumn Shade II Winning Days and Fuck The World. I love how the album shifts the sound from heavy to soft and acoustic halfway, somewhat like old vinyls. The only thing I don't like about the album is the verse/chorus/verse used throughout the album. If it were stolen/lost I would definitly buy it again. It was definitly worth the 15 bucks I shelled out. By the way, Nirvana fans, many people reffered Craig Nicholls to Kurt Cobain, although some songs sound like Nirvana, it is also equal parts Beatles, Stooges, and Kinks. It is a great, well-rounded album. // 10

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overall: 8.7
Winning Days Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 04, 2004
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: The Vines - Winning Days has great sound, you can really distinguish the different instruments from each other. The guitars heavy distortion never overtakes the bass or the drumming. Craig's voice volume has been turned down since the last album; they're becoming an actual band, not like their highly evolved album where craig is put ontop of everything. The harmony-singing is easily heard along with the whole rest of the music. Here is a tip for people who want to figure out harmony-singing or guitar riffs easily - plug your earphones out very slightly (not even a millimetre) from your mp3 or CD player; the lead singing and all the added stuff added to the song will not be heard. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics overall are very good. The complicated no-sense (at least to me) style lyrics really make The Vines a unique band. They've cut off on negtivity a bit since their last album which is a good thing. // 8

Overall Impression: I would give the CD the "Album Of The Year Award" if that existed. Ride and Animal Machine are defenitly the most impressive songs from this album, and remind me of nirvana. Rainfall and Winning Days remind me of The Beatles. Although this CD involves more of the band as a whole than Highly Evolved, the front cover totally annoys me: Craig's head in large and colorful and the other band members in tiny and black/white. If Craig really wants to make him the most important then he should change the band name to "Craig Nichols", but then of course he would get the bad reputation of an "Avril Lavigne" type band. If I would lose this CD I would buy it again and I recomend it to all of you out there. // 8

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overall: 9.3
Winning Days Reviewed by: Farmer Peach, on april 05, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: The guitar sound is very varied, the clean tone is tough, yet sprigy and beautiful. Elsewhere this is distortion to the max. Using a metal zone with a Stratocaster achieves a unique tone and is one of the many tricks up The Vines sleeves. The simpleness of the guitar work never really comes across, simply because they're always playing something interseting and colourful. The drums are solid and have occasional flashes of brilliance and patrick matthews continues to be a fantastic bassist. Always doing what's required, be it simple root notes or fantastic counter melodies. The style of the album is garage rock, psychedelia and quiet loud Pixies segments. Clasic Vines. // 10

Lyrics: Craigs singing goes from crazed punk scream to sunshine poet in the blink of an eye. Everything is controlled and in it's rightful place. There are places where his singing is beautiful and delicate, and places when it sounds like an angry toddler, which is peculilarly a good thing. The lyrics are always intersting to listen to, Craig manages to namedrop several of his favourite bands. He describes them as poetry which sounds about right. // 8

Overall Impression: Although in the same vein as Highly Evolved, this album is a step forward and one that is essential. Definitlely a grower, apart fro the singles, this album just gets better every time I listen to it. I am bias as The Vines are my favourite band in the universe but I still rate this along with all the others. I would buy it again without a second thought. A fantastic record. // 10

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