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CD REVIEW: Vine House - Young Regret
By Chip Withrow - 05/26/2008 - 03:19 PM EDT

Artist: Band: Vine House
Album: Young Regret
Genre: Power Pop
Sounds Like: Cheap Trick, early Who, REM
Production/Musicianship Grade: 10/10
Commercial Value: 9/10
Overall Talent Level: 9/10
Songwriting Skills: 9/10
Performance Skill: 9/10
Best Songs: Coffee Break, Rosalie, Killer on the Road
CD Review: So here I am, ready to enjoy Memorial Day – the unofficial first day of summer festivities – and I pop in this disc. “Killer on the Road” blasts into my headphones, teeming with big power chords and ringing vocals, and I am reminded of why good ol’ rock and roll is such a vital part of summer.

In the power pop anthems of Vine House, I hear echoes of Cheap Trick (“Killer on the Road”) early Who (the title cut), grungier REM (“Summer Fling”). Track after track on Young Regret is one more slice of melodic, hooky, punchy, immediate-gratification goodness.

Bandleader Mark Stancato has crafted one certifiable instant classic, the urgently glorious “Coffee Break.” It appropriates a speeded-up version of the chord progression of one of my all-time favorite cruising songs, Journey’s “Stone In Love,” over insistent, snappy drums.

“Rosalie” has a folkier feel – Gin Blossoms’ angst filtered through Byrds-like hippie-ness. Then comes the unique-yet-familiar “The Fall” – reggae-fied verses tumbling into the bittersweet, singalong chorus. “Mrs. Wallington” is a pretty, mid-tempo ballad, decorated with washes of organ. “Alibi” and “End of the Line” with punkish Stancato vocals and slashing guitars, are jump-from-the-speakers knockouts. Plenty of variety here, all vintage power pop.

The guitars and vocals shimmer, the songs pay homage and still sound fresh – Vine House’s Young Regret was my welcome-to-summer wake-up call. Give it a listen on your own back porch, beach trip, or top-down drive.

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