The Vines Biography
The Vines formed in Sydney, AUSTRALIA, in the mid-'90s by two 15-year-old
guys, vocalist + guitarist Craig Nicholls and bass player Patrick Matthews;
the two recruited David Olliffe on drums and began playing together around
their hometown area developing a strong local following.
The band's Alternative-Rock ricochets off of the influences of many artistically groundbreaking sounds, though the most frequent comparisons are made to Punk, Grunge and Psychedelia.
In early 2001 the group felt ready for the next stage, in fact Nicholls,
Matthews and Olliffe moved to Los Angeles and entered the studio to record
their long-awaited debut disc, but Olliffe in September decided to leave
L.A. and returned to Australia. During the following two months the remaining
members completed work on their first album and their attention-grabbing
U.K. single, "Factory", shifted the band's career into top gear,
resulting in contracts with Heavenly Records U.K. and Capitol Records
U.S. by the end of that year.
In early 2002, the two longtime friends, recruited in Sydney Hamish Rosser as their new drummer and acoustic guitarist Ryan Griffiths joined the line-up.
The Vines' debut full-length album, "Highly Evolved", was released in July 2002 to wide critical acclaim, earning them recognition in Europe with a #3 entry on the Official U.K. chart, in their homeland where it peaked at #5 and in North America where "Highly Evolved" soared to #11 on The Billboard Top 200 Albums list. The first single, "Get Free", burned up the Billboard's Modern Rock chart holding at #7 and "Outtathaway" reached the #19 position on the same chart.
In March 2004 the Aussie rockers returned with their second album, "Winning
Days", it debuted at #7 in Australia and weighed in at #23 on the
U.S. Billboard Top 200 chart; "Ride", the first single off the
album, peaked at #13 on The Modern Rock Tracks.
The period following was a transformative time for The Vines, as Nicholls took time off to gain control of his personal life and Matthews left the band.
Craig Nicholls continued to compose and in April 2006, their third album, "Vision Valley" was released with friend Andy Kent on bass; the 13-track set only reached #136 on The Billboard 200, while the main single, "Don't Listen To The Radio", missed the U.S. Rock airplay chart entirely. The band eased back into live performing later that year, taking the stage with new bassist Brad Heald.
In July 2008 The Vines released its next album, "Melodia",
on their new label Ivy League Records; the disc, which quickly catapulted
into the top 20 in Australia, features 15 new songs, including two singles:
"He's A Rocker" and "Get Out".
In the fall, the group cancelled their live commitments due to a deterioration in their frontman's mental health. In a disarmingly frank website post, the band confirmed that they were withdrawing from live and festival appearances indefinitely. In 2004 Craig Nicholls was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism, after his behaviour became increasingly erratic. He received treatment and the band were able to continue recording, even returning to the road; but the situation appears to have deteriorated.
In mid 2011 The Vines resurfaced with a new disc called "Future Primitive"; the album, which features single "Gimme Love", was recorded in Paris with fellow Aussie Chris Colonna of The Bumblebeez.