Melodia Review

artist: The Vines date: 08/07/2008 category: compact discs
The Vines: Melodia
Release Date: Jul 22, 2008
Label: Ivy
Genres: Rock
Number Of Tracks: 14
The songs on Melodia are consistent and thus set a great rock and roll tone to the overall feeling of the album.
 Sound: 8.5
 Lyrics: 7
 Overall Impression: 8.5
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reviews (4) 14 comments vote for this album:
overall: 6.7
Melodia Reviewed by: UG Team, on august 07, 2008
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: Melodia sees the return of the well renowned Australian rockers The Vines. With their blend of grizzly guitars and clean leading bass lines, Melodia is an album that doesn't disappoint. With thirteen of the fourteen songs averaging two minutes each (one of those being under a minute), you would believe the album to be rather predictable: a blend of fast paced rock, fast paced rock, and fast paced rock. But this is not the case. Sure there are songs of the quick punky, rockier genre but, as with any other album, there are also those of the slower, emotional type as well. Tracks such as opener Get Out and Braindead show just how rock and roll The Vines really are. Both songs include The Vines' signature beefed up, gravel sounding guitars (reminiscent of Kurt Cobain's guitar distortion), half shouted vocals and thumping bass lines. On the other side of the spectrum, A.S 3 and She Is Gone are perfect examples of how competent the band is when it comes to slower songs. With all that said, there are other unexpected qualities on the album. On tracks such as Orange Amber and Kara Jayne, the band somehow seems to sound slightly like a modern-day version of the Beatles. This is largely due to the fact that with these two tracks the guitars are played with electro-acoustic clean-cut sounds, whilst the drums focus more on accentuating the sounds of the cymbals and high-hats. Although the record generally flows quite well from start to finish, the one anomaly is the six minute track True As Night. Being the longest song on the album by quite a bit, the track becomes the spanner in the works that disrupts the aforementioned flow or 'chi' if you like. To make things a little crappier the quality of the song is questionable at best and, to be honest, could have been cut down to a much shorter two minutes. The only positive quality about the length of the song is it gives you ample time to grab a coffee and take a toilet break before returning to finish the album. // 7

Lyrics: Craig Nicholls, now off the marijuana which used to haunt and drive him towards erratic outbursts, has somewhat cleaned up his lyrics. It really does show on Melodia as Nicholls' lyrics are more tongue-in-cheek than the previous offerings from the band. The lyrics in Melodia are also much more straightforward and simplistic: All he ever playin' is that rock and roll music; Rock and roll music yeah; All he ever wanted was a reason to do it; Reason to do it yeah as shown by these lyrics from He's A Rocker. But where this style of lyrical writing is Nicholls' forte, it is also his failing. Although simple, efficient and easy to understand, the lyrics aren't evocative or visual. A good example of this would be on Braindead: Ow; Dead in the brain; Is your claim to fame; I live by the sound. Luckily for Nicholls, his fitting and grungy voice helps pry your mind away from thinking about the lyrics. // 6

Overall Impression: With Melodia, The Vines have created a record that will please old fans. The songs on the album are consistent and thus set a great rock and roll tone to the overall feeling of Melodia. Yet while there aren't necessarily any 'bad' tracks as such on the record, there aren't really any slap-you-in-the-face 'stand-out' tracks either. With that said, The Vines have on their hands a record that will neither set them back in their career, nor push them onto worldwide fame and stardom. // 7

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overall: 8.3
Melodia Reviewed by: Jk3y, on august 07, 2008
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: This is The Vines 4th album, the band has been hit by the media and has gone through some tough times (specifically the album Winning Days), but they've pulled through and come out with another album. While this is their fourth album their formula hasn't changed all that much. In true Vines fashion the album goes from harder rock songs to the mellow softer songs, changing pace all the time. The Vines have previously been labelled The Next Nirvana by the media, and then hit down for not meeting expectations. However the Vines never intended this, instead there is something similar but so different(which I will get to later). I will go saying that this is not their best album; rather they have stayed safe by sticking with what they've done for 8 years and refined it to something that is a short burst of the Vines. This album in my opinion shows everything they have done in the past and improved it. The riffs, rocky screams and shouts are still there, but here we can see they fall a bit short of something special. The harder rock songs fall short of being The Vines from Highly Evolved, not that they're bad songs, rather they don't have a song that simply make you want to jump up and down like Get Free or Ride. They've tried to recapture this magic in Vision Valley with songs like Anysound and now in this album He's A Rocker. But this album is far from bad. In fact this album is great, just in a different way. The Vines have been consistent in having excellent ballads with great melodies and it simply takes you to another place. Autumn Shade and Mary Jane showed hints of greatness and then came Autumn Shade II, Winning Days and Spaceship. This is what made me fall in love with the Vines, and there's plenty to love here. Autumn Shade III is just short of 2 minutes but is simply a masterpiece to finish off the Autumn Shade series. Put them together and you have a huge epic song that is everything I love about the Vines. Soaring Melodies, lush acoustics and it is what we've been waiting for, my only complaint is that I wish it was longer. However then I take a listen to True as the Night (which is 6 minutes long), this is another great ballad - I might even say it's the best track on the album. The Vines never go for complicated, rather they have beautiful arrangements, maybe that's what makes the Vines different. It is hard to explain, the music is simple but so wonderful, if you've listened to ASII you will realise what I'm talking about, it's out of this world. Their music has a healing power (sounds stupid I know, but it's true). True As The Night is an epic ballad which I can give nothing but praise. As for the other songs there is plenty to love: Braindead, Manger and Kara Jayne are all great songs. Every track has something to love; the only exception is He's A Rocker, which is possibly one of the worst Vines songs. Also they chose it as a singleI'm not happy with that. // 9

Lyrics: The Vines have always been a hit and a miss with lyrics, I personally love Craig's lyrics in some songs, they're crazy but good. Like poetry on steroids (bad simile). However on some songs, they lyrics are so average, it lets down the album, He's a Rocker sounds like something a 5 year old would write, and while you have other songs that sound like a genius drunk poet wrote. Lyrics are mainly simple, but it's the arrangements and melodies that make the Vines shine, that why I look past this. With simple lyrics, songs can be applied to many things, in fact unlike other artists that address certain issues with the world or life, The Vines have songs that are like a soundtrack to your life. Simple lyrics suit The Vines, no complaints here. // 7

Overall Impression: I am very pleased with this album, although they have done nothing different, I am fine with this as it's exactly what I wanted. The Vines have not changed their formula, they have just put out another batch of great songs that I will listen time and time again. They have songs to suit all your moods you are feeling at the day, Craig might be damn crazy, but he can write damn good music. I hope The Vines continue making great music as I'm sure it will inspire many others as it has inspired me. // 9

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overall: 9.3
Melodia Reviewed by: GuitarMAN2207, on august 07, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: Great Australian band The Vines, who were named 'The Saviors of Rock' by Rolling Stone Magazine, are back with their fourth studio album, Melodia. This album contains 14 tracks, which range from heavy rock songs with four chord riffs, to slow songs with acoustic guitar, and even an instrumental, even though it only goes for fifty seconds. One stand out track would be Merry-go-round. It may have a simple riff, but for the chorus, the tempo increases and the song gets faster, which I believe they have not done before. Unlike their last album, Vision Valley, Melodia has a happier feel to it. The songs may be simple and easy to understand, but they still pack a punch. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics on Melodia, like with most of their music are simple, not having much depth, but that does not mean that they lack feeling. Unlike on Vision Valley, which has lyrics mostly associated with death and taking LSD (I saw this on an interview with Craig Nicholls on Channel V. The Death and LSD do not actually have anything to do with him. The lyrics are just about them), Melodia goes on a happier feel, and even a religious meaning on the track Manger. The Lyrics on Melodia are more about love and overcoming problems in life. Craig's voice is very well demonstrated on this album, especially his trademark screaming or yelling. His voice harmonises very well with the music and minces in with it very well. Also the backing singers sing very well on this album. Craig's voice is best demonstrated on the track Kara Jayne, espcially his falcetto (Singing very high) during the violin section. // 8

Overall Impression: The Vines are a very unique band with a strong sound. They are still staying with the strong rock sound that has been shown from other bands such as the earlier Silverchair, and especially Jet. Melodia still stays with the great rock sound, even though I was a little dissapointed that none of the tracks seemed to be as Memorable as past tracks, such as Don't Listen To The Radio (Vision Valley) or Get Free (Highly Evolved). But this does not mean that there are not heavy tracks. Some of the best tracks off the album are get Out, He's A Rocker (Already Released), Brain Dead, Kara Jane, Merry-go-round and Hey. I love that the Vines hve not sold out and become pop, unlike other mainstream bands (Silverchair, Good Charlotte), but I do wish that they had made their songs more memorable by having more hooks in the lyrics or maybe more memorable guitar work. Despite this, Melodia is a great album which sounds and feels like pure Australian rock. // 10

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overall: 7.7
Melodia Reviewed by: AwesomeDrummer, on august 07, 2008
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: As you may already have realised, the Vines are fighters. After their debut album 'Highly Evolved' hit the big time after the success of the single 'get free', they were being praised by many critics, some even going as far as saying they were a wild cross between Nirvana and The Beatles. Unfortunetly, their 2nd album 'Winning Days' was not as successful. Then Singer/Lead guitarist Craig Nicholls was diagnosed with a lower form of Aspbergers disease and many thought they were no more. Than, in 2006, they brought out their 3rd album, 'Vision Valley'. The band then began touring again, and solidified themselves as an important part of the Post-Grunge/Garage scene. Vision Valley saw them grow into their own, and began to show some of their own sound. 'Melodia' is an extension of this, and is full of bright ideas. It begins with 'Get Out', a typical Vines song, with the smooth verses, and the explosive choruses. The first single off the album 'He's A rocker' has had strong success in Australia, and is one of the best songs ever produced by the band. Running for a minor one minute and fifty-four seconds, it has the typical vocal melody guitar solo, yelling in the chorus, and an interesting outro. However some songs are just a waste of space on the C.D, like the extremely short instrumental track 'Jamola', which leads to nowhere. Yet, the album's sound is another step forward for the Vines, in it's journey to the top. // 8

Lyrics: Although I find Craig's general ideas to be quite clever, he does often sing or yell (which ever you prefer to call it) about nothing in particular. He also doesn't make much sense in the grammar department, in choruses such as that of 'He's a Rocker' he yells "All he's ever doing is that rockin' the music, rockin' the music, yeah". Even though you get the general idea of what he is saying, it does quite often get annoying. Craig is an outstanding singer, and his vocals are always used to the power of the Vines. // 7

Overall Impression: Stand-out songs on this album are definetly 'Get out' 'He's a rocker' 'Manger' and the moody ballad 'True as the night'. Although the album has some misses, it is jam-packed with ideas that as mentioned earlier sometimes pay off and sometimes don't. If it were lost, I would buy it again. // 8

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