Live at The Forum, London, UK (descarga directa video)

Live at The Forum, London, UK (descarga directa video)Details: DTI Exclusive video. August 2006
Winds Of Change – The Vines at The Forum By John Aizlewood, Evening Standard 30.08.06
Few people have adapted less well to success then Craig Nicholls, The Vines’ singer and (almost) sole songwriter. In 2004, after a period of extremely erratic behaviour climaxed with the trashing the studios of the David Letterman Show (America’s second most prestigious chat show) on air and assaulting a photographer at a Sydney hometown show, it was announced that Nicholls was suffering from that especially modern disease, Asperger’s Syndrome, a form of mild autism exacerbated by his ferocious marijuana habit.
The diagnosis was disputed, for another tranche of medical opinion mused that Nicholls was waylaid with that most debilitating of conditions: popstaritis.
Still a fragile soul, despite the clattering nature of his band, Nicholls has quit the joints and embarked upon a more gentle media and touring schedule to promote the third Vines album, Vision Valley.
Last night, those expecting another meltdown would have left disappointed, despite Nicholls’s half-hearted attempt to wreck Hamish Rosser’s drum-kit after the closing FTW. Indeed, as Autumn Shade faded, Nicholls moved to play his guitar above his head. Then, he thought better of it. This was no freakshow, although almost every song offered the opportunity for Nicholls to unleash a cathartic howl.
Instead, the erstwhile grumpy tempest was the mildest, most polite of breezes, even inviting the audience to “give yourselves a hand” whenever they sang along. It was as if Jim Bowen had joined a tortured pop-punk band.
Yet, Nicholls’s rebirth means that these remain difficult days for a group whose appeal is becoming increasingly selective. With a frontman no longer on the brink of disaster every time he steps on to a stage, the focus more than ever is on the music. And there The Vines stumble and there lies the key to an oddly flat evening.
Trapped behind his guitar and sounding uncannily like Smashing Pumpkins leader Billy Corgan, Nicholls has two strings to his bow. Firstly, the Nirvanaesque shoutalongs such as TV Pro or Fuk Yeh. For the most part he lacked the melodic gifts to evolve from bluster to anthemic.
Then, there were the longer, slower epics like 1969 or Winning Days. They were better, but the more they sweated, they more they lacked the touch of genius Nicholls so commendably aspires to. The memorable, chorus-heavy, midtempo new single, Don’t Listen to the Radio suggested a possible future third way, but right now The Vines are in the quicksands of transition.

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