Empire of the Sun’s ‘Two Vines’ not worth the extra loops

Category:  The Arts
Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016 at 6:11 PM
Empire of the Sun’s ‘Two Vines’ not worth the extra loops by Britton Rozzelle

Empire of the Sun is a band formed on the principle that art, music and storytelling can overlap and create something interesting.

Their first two albums — “Walking on a Dream” and “Ice on the Dune” — were albums full of intrigue, excitement and uniqueness; a sound that only this Australian band could produce.

“Two Vines” is almost wholly lacking the fire and songwriting that made their previous works memorable.

“Before” is arguably the most interesting song on the album, with very “Walking on a Dream” qualities to it. It got me excited for what was coming next.

“High and Low,” though, wasn’t really worth the build- up, sounding more like a retrofitted modern Coldplay song than anything else. Much like Coldplay, it seems this band has lost its way and become a shell of its former self as their popularity has ballooned.

The title track, “Two Vines,” ends up sounding like a late-2000s Calvin Harris remix/collaboration. It’s fun enough, though, and one of the stronger songs on the record.

“Friends” and “There’s No Need” blur together in a boring, seven-minute long stretch that goes from early electronic-sounding to being a sonic clone of something off the new Justin Bieber records.

“Way To Go” is more on track, as far as joining their sound with modern music sensibilities, but isn’t anything special.

“Ride” holds onto easily- remixable 4/4 beats that halt all sense of momentum built up by “Way to Go.”

“Digital Life” ended up being arguably one of the most boring, bland and uninspired sounding songs I’ve heard this entire calendar year.

“First Crush” tries to do something with its four- minute runtime, but is so utterly incompetent in almost every way that I had no love for it or the story it presents.

“ZZZ” is a fine addition to the album, but by the time I got to it, I was done with the album mentally, physically and spiritually.

The final track, “To Her Door,” peels back the try- hard electronic beats present for most of the album and is a more emotional, generally trite song, but isn’t enough to save “Two Vines” from gathering virtual dust in my library. 

Britton Rozzelle is the Executive Editor for The Spectator. He can be reached at edinboro.spectator@gmail.com.

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