Home Read Classic Album Review: The Vines | Highly Evolved

Classic Album Review: The Vines | Highly Evolved

The Australian pop-punk trio add some Beatle-pop to their indie-rock grunge mix.

This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


In America, they’re touted as the next Strokes. In England, they’re the next Nirvana. Meanwhile, back in reality, Australian pop-punk trio The Vines are neither.

Sure, they can handily deliver the downtown new-wave grit of the former, along with the primal screams and walloping power chords of the latter. Hell, they can even do both in the same song, as anyone who’s heard their near-perfect post-grunge singles like Highly Evolved and Get Free can attest. But the rest of this magnetic debut album is where The Vines prove they’re after bigger fish — namely, the songwriting mantle of The Beatles. The hip-swivelling cuts like Outtathaway, the gentler pop ballads like Homesick, the melodic, hooky vocals and the razor-sharp choruses peppered throughout this dozen-track gem offer ample evidence these lads are indeed highly evolved, equally familiar with the catalogs of Paul and John as those of Kurt and Julian. So let the hypesters call them whatever they want. More than likely, by this time next year they’ll be calling some other band the next Vines.


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