on September 12, 2002
Thrasher/metalhead/moshpit punk that I am, I was wary of Silverchair's fourth album after hearing on their official website that the hard-chargers from Oz weren't 'just a rock band' anymore. But considering Silverchair's basic assets (a versatile, ultra-roughouse bass and drums team and a splendidly expressive lead singer), I had faith that my favorite Aussie superband wouldn't let me down. I'm used to Silverchair putting out near-perfect albums where I love every track - I can't say that is true of their latest. There are a couple of overdone tracks on Diorama where songwriter Daniel Johns sounds like he's begging music critics to finally take him seriously. But overall, my faith in Silverchair is confirmed. At the heart of Diorama are a handful of stone-cold musical knockouts. Breath-taking, beautiful music from a still young prodigy who aspires to greatness. The best songs are 'Without You', 'World Upon Your Shoulders', 'My Favourite Thing' and 'After All These Years'. (Another superb track from the Australian import, 'Asylum', is not on the U.S version.) Listening to past, more furious Silverchair records, you might think Daniel Johns was a hopelessly distressed young man. On Diorama, we find out that the singer uses music to amplify his emotions. When Johns is mad, he is really mad. And when he is feeling good, his exhilaration can just sweep you away. This is a great album to listen to at the ocean, surrounded by white waves crashing over rocks. Or even better, standing on a long, fog-banked fishing pier. Take it from a rebellious, cynical moshpit thrasherpunk like me, if sometimes you are just feeling a little too cynical, rebellious and all-around bummed out, this album can really improve your mood.
Which isn't to say that Silverchair can't still pull out the sledgehammer with the best of them. Flanked by his rough-and-tumble bandmates Chris Joannou and Ben Gillies, Johns shows on 'One Way Mule' he can take on that Korn guy for scary metal monster honors any night. Funny, though, I can't imagine Korn or Bizkit or Helmet breaking into a sacred, luminous ballad like 'After All These Years'.
Early in their career, some critics accused Silverchair of imitating Nirvana. More than ever, I'm convinced that was a load (and a cheap shot), for one basic reason. Silverchair do not hold their fans in contempt the way Kurt Cobain did. No band could make music like Diorama unless they loved and cared about the people they are making music for.
on June 13, 2007
Quick overview of the album:
Intricate orchestration, fantastic chord progressions, an apparently new style of songwriting/composition, with intricate melodies and harmonies, and the angelic vocals of Daniel Johns, come together with pristine mixing and production, culminating in a totally cohesive, outside the box journey through possibilities in music. Diorama is easy enough on today's ears that any layman should enjoy it thoroughly, yet complex enough to tickle the finely tuned senses of any musician. To call it progressive would be inappropriate only as there are already connotations attached to the word. (The album is not progressive compared to, say, Dream Theater's "Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes From A Memory.") Daniel Johns, singer, guitar player, and songwriter, has described the album as "escapist," adding that he wanted to take the listener out of his/her world and into the colorful realms you will find in this album.
Johns' lyrics, generally simple and straightforward earlier in his career, have come to the point of poetry and intriguing riddles.
Tracks to hit:
"Across the Night", "Tuna in the Brine", and "After All These Years" are the most intricate and wonderful, followed by "My Favourite Thing" and "Luv Your Life."
1. Across the Night
A sweeping two-part epic, in which Johns sings of his coming to peace/falling in love with the world which for so long seemed only to haunt and hurt him. Beginning with a nice harpsichord and vocal intro, the orchestra comes in with a bang and away we go, escaping into a "world within a world" (Johns' definition of diorama). In the glorious second part of the song, Johns perhaps expresses his feelings about being in a serious relationship.
2. The Greatest View
The first single of the album, melodic and relatively simple, a pleasant rock ballad.
3. Without You
Rock with poetic imagery, written in three, or six. The Chorus is a straight up rock waltz. A cool song, noteworthy on its own, though in this album, it may be considered a sort of lull, although its bridge is particularly nice.
4. World Upon Your Shoulders
A climbing, sympathetic, and encouraging piece, urging the listener to do what [one] can when one can bring one's self to do it, only put much more nicely. Ye of waning spirit, find an understanding soul reaching through these words! Perhaps this song shows us how Daniel climbed out of his bleak world view into a broader, more loving and accepting state of being.
5. One Way Mule
Dirty, Sexy, Gravel-voiced, Heavy, Slow, Sweaty. Hot. Good work. (Swoon)
6. Tuna in the Brine
Wonderfully, intricately, articulately orchestrated, this aquamarine epic dares to explore the dark, briny depths of addiction, deception, and fear. Sunlight trickles in through the surface from time to time, but we are definitely underwater here. This wonderful piece turns the listener around so many times with unexpected, disorienting, sophistocated changes that both chill and delight, putting shivers to the bone and goosebumps upon the flesh, that, pummelled by the crashing waves, we find ourselves near ocean floor, amongst the kelp, floating upright, captivated by bubbles rising, so deep that it may be difficult to tell which way is up; mercifully, Johns, Gillies, Joannou, Mac, and Parks guide us back through the murky, benthic depths to the sunlit surface; the build toward the climax a gulp of fresh air, but in the end, we are not off the hook...Johns leaves us with a haunted warning, and we are left floating...
7. Too Much Of Not Enough
A brief guitar intro soothes the unease and washes the palate clean of saltwater. A pleasant, yet burdened beginning builds to a chorus that is one of the hardest on the album. Lyrics also suggest that addictive behaviour was an inspiration for the song. Ends hauntingly.
8. Luv Your Life
One of the (Australian) radio favorites of the album, beautiful, charming. ('Doot Doot's even!) Lots of beauty between vocal harmonies and orchestra. More insightful than ever, words take us deeper into ourselves, with Johns lighting the way, teaching what he has learned, sharing his perspective. Uplifting, bordering on sappy at times, but if you let it be, this song is really nice. Parks' tasteful composition fills out the sound perfectly. Interlude is simply gorgeous. Tears form as though by command...
Hardest song on the album, and, oddly, the most like S&M orchestrally. Go figure. Gravel-voiced, hard rockin, a throwback to the angry days, perhaps; shows that Silverchair can still paint blacks, reds, and dark purples...when they want to.
10. My Favorite Thing
Way down from 'Lever', we are treated to a midnight lover's lullabye. Soft woodwinds and strings provide beautiful shading for this delicate, resolute, and passionate carress. Symphony, accoustic guitar, winds, strings, piano, and snare support and intertwine while Johns' precise, exceptional vocals complete the kiss. A beautiful, heartfelt song.
11. After All These Years
Piano and vocal, then orchestra. This is probably the most touching song on the whole album. Gentle, reflective, and reassuring, this gorgeous piece feels like it could have been written hundreds of years ago. In this arrangement, Daniel is both soloist and choir of angels. This is also by far the longest track on the album, but most of it is silence...bonus, a curious piano exploration awaits the patient (or those who fast forward), and takes us out of this 'world within a world.'
I can actually say that this album changed my life. huh.
Actually, my silverchair fanhood is a strange affair. my little brother bought frogstomp in 95 (6?), and i listened to it a fair amount then. i remember hearing quite a bit of 'abuse me' on the radio a little later, but i pretty much fell off the boat. i remember looking at freakshow at the record store, wanting it, but eventually not buying it. i have since listened to freakshow(2nd) and neon ballroom(3rd), and they are both good albums, showing the progress and growth of the musicians. "Cemetary" off freakshow and "Emotion Sickness" off ballroom seem to me forshadowing for diorama.
At the time I first heard this album, i thought Johns was the composer of all the orchestral parts, and was so thoroughly impressed that i was convinced he would be remembered for centuries as one of the great composers of our time.... which still may be true, but i was very seriously disappointed when i found out about Van Dyke Parks, who did the orchestration.
i had wanted to believe that Johns was truly the mastermind, but i suppose, in a way, he still was, for finding the right people to come together to bring out most completely his vision, even the parts that were relatively obscure/veiled to him.
To this day, the album has had an incredible effect on me as an artist. Certainly, it is some of the best modern music I've heard in my lifetime.
on January 6, 2003
A couple months ago, I came across a review for "Diorama" on -
of all sites - a wrestling site (which also featured columns on
music, videogames, etc.). The person who reviewed it compared it
to The Beatles' Sgt. Peppers in the sense that it was such a radical departure from their previous music. Apparently, I've been really out of touch with music for the past few years, because I didn't even realize Silverchair was still around, let alone putting out a fourth album (I didn't even know "Neon Ballroom" existed at the time I read the review). The last I heard of Silverchair was a song called "Cemetary", and after that, their popularity seemed to fade when all the boy bands and manufactured pop stars came into the picture. Anyway, I downloaded a couple songs ("Across the Night" and "The Greatest View") off Kazaa, and I was really intrigued. THIS is Silverchair? "Across the Night" in particular sounded unclassifyable (is that a word?) in terms of genre, but nonetheless, I was intrigued. So I went out, and bought the album. After a the first listen, I thought to myself, "Wow..they HAVE changed!" I immediately listened to the album again..and again..and after about 5 listens, I knew two things:
1) That "Diorama" is easily the best album of 2002
2) I'm now a HUGE Silverchair fan.
The experience opens up with "Across the Night", one of three tracks arranged by the legendary Van Dyke Parks (who worked with the Beach Boys on "Pet Sounds"). A fantastic track that pulls you in from the opening seconds, and makes you want to keep listening to hear what could be next.
The next track, "The Greatest View", was apparently the first single even though I never heard it played on the radio. It starts off with some heavy guitar chords, but turns into a soulful love song with an irrestibly catchy chorus.
"Without You", the second single (which again, I've never heard on the radio) is next. Another very catchy, powerful love song. Daniel Johns sounds eerily like Johnny Reznik (or whatever the Goo Goo Dolls frontman's name is) during the chorus, but in this case, it's not a bad thing.
Another feel good song, "World Upon Your Shoulders" follows. At this point, the album is "4 for 4" in terms of excellent songs.
The next track, "One Way Mule" is a departure from the "New Silverchair", and sounds more like the grunge infused Silverchair of the 90's. I suspect this was one of the first songs written for the album, perhaps leftover from the Neon Ballroom sessions. It's certainly not a bad song (in fact, I like it a lot), but it really doesn't fit in with the rest of the album.
The second half of the album so to speak kicks off with "Tuna in the Brine", my personal favorite song on the whole album. Like "Across the Night", this one has a lot of orchestral arrangements in the background. The song also changes tempo many times throughout. This song didn't grab me right away like "The Greatest View" or "World Upon Your Shoulders", but while the latter songs kind of stayed the same upon each listen, this one has so many layers, and like wine, gets better with age.
"Too Much of Not Enough" is similar to "World Upon.." in many ways, yet they sound nothing alike. Accoustic verses lead into a pretty heavy chorus, and a nice bridge in the middle leads to a heavy finish.
"Luv Your Life" is just a BEAUTIFUL song, and I fell in "luv" with it on the first listen. I believe this was the third single (even though the album just came out in August here in the states, it's been out since March in Australia, which explains all the singles released already). If I'm ever in a bad mood, or just stressed out, I listen to this song. This is the third song featuring Van Dyke Parks arrangements, although they're not quite as conspicuous on this track.
"The Lever" is the other "grungey" track on Diorama that doesn't really fit in much, but it's still an excellent song, and I'd rather have it on the album (despite not fitting in) than not have it. The French Horns (?) midway through are cool touch.
"My Favorite Thing" is a really slow, but beautiful song.
Finally, "After All These Years", which features Daniel Johns on piano rather than guitar. I think this was the recently released fourth single, which boggles my mind. I mean, it's a great way to close the album, but it just doesn't seem like something you'd hear on the radio.
And that's "Diorama". Basically, if you like GOOD music, you should buy this album. Anyone who still compares Silverchair to Nirvana needs to get out of their cave, and listen to Diorama. I love Nirvana as much as the next person, but after hearing this album (and Neon Ballroom, which I went out and bought a couple weeks after I bought Diorama) I would put Silverchair way over them.
on December 14, 2002
Lots of people have said this album "isn't Silverchair". It is.... Silverchair started progressing to this sound when they wrote songs for Freakshow. Petrol and Chlorine, for instance. When I first popped Diorama into my player, I thought, hmmmm... this is brave. I wasn't sure whether to like it or not; it's so much different to anything else around at the moment. I'm glad I gave it the time I did. If I hadn't, i'd have probably missed out on the most musically talented, important album to be released for years.
This isn't an album you can like from the very time you listen to it. It's impossible; there's too much to capture. People who have critisized this album either haven't given it enough time, or purely don't have any musical appreciation (no offense...!)
Living in the UK, our music industry is caught up in manufactured "pop idol" music. Either that or some cheese-ridden novelty song. Diorama is was the UK needs. It would make people realise there is so much more music can offer. It's not going to happen, mind you. Money making major record labels will se to that....
Long gone the so called Nirvana impersonations, Silverchair have delivered a sound that very few bands on the planet can. Daniel Johns is one of the greatest songwriters around at the moment. Standout tracks on the album are "Across the Night" and "Tuna in the Brine". Tuna in the Brine has the most climatic ending to a song I think I have ever heard; truly astonishing. "My Favourite Thing" is acompanied by the the most fantastic orchestra. This really is the greatest record to come our in the past 10 years. It's just such a shame it hasn't hit off in the UK, it's what we, and indeed the world needs to hear.
If don't buy this record, then i'm sorry. Sorry you have missed such a powerful, important and fresh record. Well done Silverchair, you have shined.
on February 23, 2006
Silverchair have evolved dramatically since the bands early days. After winning a talent competition, Silverchair were signed to a record contract. Since then, they have release albums consisting of thick, chunky riffs, similar to bands such as Nirvana, Soundgarden, etc. However, on the last Silverchair album ("Neon Ballroom"), Silverchair fans started to gain a few into the immense and diverse vast musical landscape that the band members were capable of. The potential was there, however Daniel Johns and fellow band members stuck to a formula and it gained results. However, upon release of "Diorama", Silverchair dropped that formula, there full talent exposed and thus, musical genius was created.
The first song on this album is "Across the Night". I believe this song was a single. As the first song, this would have turned a lot of Silverchair fans expecting heavy, grunge riffs off. But its an amazingly, beautiful song. Majestic in every way. It feels as if you are being figuratively across the night; excuse the use of the title. Daniel Johns voice has matured and grown so much. The instrument structure here is breath taking and lyrically, the band has never been better. A great opening song. 5/5
The first single "The Greatest View" follows this. Heavy guitars start this song up before dropping down into a softer verse, followed up by a catchy, yet slightly poppy chorus. Good guitaring all throughout the song. An obvious choice for first single but definitely not the best song on the album. 4.5/5
Next is "Without You", another single. I used to skip this song a lot, just because I had heard it a lot. Its a nice song and though I can listen to it, to me, dynamically, its not there. 4/5
Next is the worst song on the album "World Upon Your Shoulders". There is no movement throughout the song and Daniel Johns sings in the same tone throughout. Its definitely an ambient song until it hits the chorus, where it gets heavier but its just lacking for me. Daniel Johns, though singing the same, still makes the chorus very uplifting. Also a weird choice in guitaring here. 2.8/5
Then comes "One Way Mule". Until I learnt to appreciate the full scope and beauty of this album, this, along with "The Lever" were possibly my favourite songs on the album. This is one of the grungier songs on the album. Full of thick, chunky riffs; Daniel Johns voice becomes deeper, though it soars, it soars in bass notes, which enhance the overall feel of the song. 4.25/5
"Tuna in the Brine" has a weak starting in my opinion. Usually, just listening to the starting makes me want to turn over but once the instruments kick in, the song is incredible; much more majestic. Daniel Johns voice is once again in top form. 4.8/5
"Too Much of Not Enough" has good lead in opening verse. But I feel it lacks in chorus. The chorus definitely has more punch than previous songs like "Across the Night", for example. But it is an ineffective chorus. However, once again Daniel Johns voice is amazing. This song takes some time to warm to but it is a very well written song, just lacking slightly in chorus. 4.2/5
"Luv Your Life" I used to skip all the time because I thought it was too poppy. But it is an amazing song. Very uplifting, very powerful. Perfect use of piano to add to the warm, melodic feel. Daniel Johns' half-scatted chorus full of "Do's" is immensely powerful and just adds to the scope and range of the song. It is obvious to see that he loves what he is doing. At 2:20 into the song comes a complete change up in music direction and once again the instruments and voice of Daniel Johns make this perfect before returning to the original structure. One of the greatest songs of the last 10 years. 5/5
"The Lever" is the other heavy song on the album. It takes about thirty seconds for it to begin. The guitars are effective and Daniel Johns once again reverts to his deeper voice. The chorus slows down yet the guitars are still as chunky and full as ever. Good song, though easily not the best. 4/5
"My Favourite Thing". An acoustic steel-string guitar starts this song up, followed in by Daniel Johns' voice which has been using the reverb technique. In this song the change up of chords just adds to the soft, half-depressing, sadistic, yet sarcastically uplifting feel of the song. And at one point, the guitars kick in, before dropping out and kicking back in. All these slight change ups have been though over carefully. Showing how much the band members have grown and matured. 5/5
The last song on this album is "After All These Years". Beautiful piano opens this song. The effect of the piano provokes though. Daniel Johns' voice is very powerful here. Almost standing out on its own, its melancholy, dramatically powerful at the same time. But the chorus is very uplifting, very powerful at the same time. It seems this song is the antitheist to depressing funeral music. The verses allow people to reflect while the chorus shows the good times, to reflect on those good times and forget about the bad times. Once again, grand, evocative lyrics are used throughout the song. An incredible song to cap out the album. 5/5
Do I think this is one of the greatest albums ever? Possible not, but I believe it is a landmark for Australian music. Do I think it is one of the most underrated albums of the last ten years? Definitely. Do I think it is one of the best albums since the year 2000? Once again, yes. With better marketing, this album could have been a huge success in both Europe and North America. I listen to a wide variety of music. Tool, A Perfect Circle, Iron Maiden, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Coheed & Cambria, The Mars Volta, Coldplay, Foo Fighters, Incubus and Nirvana. Just to name a few of the more popular bands on my music list. My point is that this album is much better than anything Nirvana could have ever released and had it not been for bad marketing or the current pop/rap/hip-hop/dance craze, this album could have been huge. But with the current descend of good music, that will never be. A grand, majestically, underrated album.
on April 11, 2005
One of the first things to take note of whenever albums are labelled "revolutionary" or "essential" is the listening audience. Few grunge bands could get away with writing a mostly orchestral-pop album, let alone keep their audience intact. I myself listen to a lot of metal, and although this was before I grew into metal, I can't help but love such a gem.
The album opens with the incredibly infectious Across The Night. The orchestral parts are spectacular, and Daniel Johns' vocals complement the music perfectly. It eventually progresses into a speedier, determined piano part, with some wonderfully bright sustained notes by Dan. The song appears to end on a high, chordal note, but the violin seems to return ever so slightly, as if taking its well-deserved second bow onstage. 97/100 - the perfect opener.
The Greatest View's starting riff and chorus are a bit awkward. It grows on the listener, but it doesn't really paint as accurate a picture of the album as it should have. One addition I liked was the introduction of the trumpet playing the guitar riff the second time around. 90/100 - the contrast is weird, but appreciable.
Without You is brings Daniel's brighter vocal style into a template that doesn't have any of the angst of Ana's Song (Open Fire) or Miss You Love. The inspiring vocals work well, and the fantastic instrumental bit towards the end is brilliant, with an absolutely massive bass part. 95/100 - important, as it's both a rock song and very bright, and acts as a bit of a buffer for those who can't quite get into the band's new style.
World Upon Your Shoulders doesn't begin with as direct an introduction as other featured songs. It instead builds up the acoustic guitars and the soft-falsetto-style vocals into a bridge that is one of the best parts of the album. The flute sound injects a new sort of "idea" into the music after the second chorus, and the vocals and weird lyrics lead into a guitar section of pure melody. The song then lapses back into its previous, blissfully happy state. 87/100 - excellent bridge, but a bit too unquestioningly happy.
One Way Mule is the first pure rock song featured, and as only one of two on the album, nostalgists will treasure it. The loud verses and soft choruses contrast somewhat weirdly with each other, and the erratic, distorted guitar solo accentuates that further. It's not quite as bright as the rest of the album, like a more complex evolution of the songs on Frogstomp. 91/100 - likeable, but with a really weird guitar solo.
Tuna In The Brine is the most experimental song on the album. The mood drifts between a satisfaction-sort of happy to something a bit darker. The lyrics are excellent, and as per usual, so are the vocals - most particularly in the fantasy-like second verse. The acoustic bit pushes the song into a whole new level of brightness in its fourth quarter. An impressive technique in both this song and Across The Night is the sheer amount of flawless key-changes and accidental usage. They're almost undetectable, and their usage really seems to be one of the cornerstones of the album. When writing songs, few bands ever manage to stray out of key successfully, but here, it's worked. 98/100 - unsurpassed, and a huge album highlight.
Too Much Of Not Enough is some relief from the fantasy of the previous track. It remains quiet and fairly acoustic until its louder, more emotional chorus. 85/100 - all about contrast, and rather melodic.
Luv Your Life is another orchestral-pop highlight. The chorus introduction isn't big, and it leads subtlely into the infectious first verse. The orchestra isn't felt quite as much in this song - Daniel's vocals carry the melody even more so than usual, especially in the wordless post-chorus. Nonsense words like "du, du, dudududu" have never been so melodic and likeable - how that sections functions so well is beyond me. 95/100 - warm, melodic and bright as usual.
The Lever's incredibly strange intro leades into the heaviest track on the album, and it's more likeable than One Way Mule; there's no awkwardness in the contrast. When playing it live on Live At Faraway Stables, the band manages to pull its four minutes into eleven, with a really random story about drugs, studio recordings and strawberries in between. 94/100 - kind of funk-rockish, and blissfully heavy.
My Favourite Thing contains a lot of orchestra, but is probably the worst song on the album because it fails to make good use of the mood set by the acoustic guitars and vocals. 83/100 - promising, but overblown.
After All These Years isn't the type of album finish that you would expect from such an album with such maximalist, surrounding parts. It's a very direct piano/vocals song, with some backing vocals and violins towards the end (Asylum, from the Without You single, does this in a better style). A five-minute silence follows, and afterwards is a "hidden" track - a short piano instrumental in a stranger style than the rest of the song. PaulMac actually plays all the keyboard/piano parts on the album, perhaps a shadow of what came afterwards.
I can honestly say that this is an incredibly consistent and influential listen; and if you give it some thought, it'll be a rewarding experience. Despite all the metal that I listen to, I constantly remind myself how much I enjoy my favourite album. But if I'm feeling otherwise, I listen to Across The Night or Tuna In The Brine, and all my doubts disappear.
on June 18, 2003
"It's not a 'one-listen' album, you really have to listen to it all the way through a few times to understand it, and even then you might hate it."~Daniel Johns
Daniel Johns is genius. He was truly placed on this planet for the sake of music. If you could see his soul, it would be made up of guitar riffs, music notes, and wonderful harmonies.
"Silverchair's latest release, Diorama debuted at #1 in Australia and reached platinum status within it's first week of release." How can an entire country be wrong? Daniel Johns, the frontman of Silverchair for anyone who didn't know, said that he wanted this album to be magical..goal reached. The only bad review you will read about this album is one writen by someone stuck in the Frogstomp era, or someone who was dependant on the depressing, darker lyrics of Neon Ballroom. This CD, like the album cover, is colorful and a true beauty. I rarely ever feel so strongly about a single album.
Although the singles are great (The Greatest View, Without You, Luv Your Life, After All These Years, & Across The Night), the whole CD is an experience, one that can't be put into words. You have to truly love and appreciate music, not just listen to the trends, to understand the feeling in this album.
This CD is one that will be overlooked by a lot of people in the states if it's not put in their faces somehow. And since the original Across The Night Tour plans got messed up because of Johns being ill, it didn't get the best promotion it deserved. The US is being taken over by the "punk/pop" craze, and Diorama is anything but that. It's very easy for people to overlook this album.
If you want another Frogstomp or even Freak Show, just go turn on 'Tomorrow'. If you're looking for something magical, beautiful, original, and classic..try Diorama. It is well worth it.
on April 2, 2006
I like Silverchair. I bought "Frogstomp" way back in the day and ejoyed it. "Abuse Me" blew me away the first time I heard it on the radio a couple of years later, and I came close to buying "Freak." Not a lot happened after that (though "Neon Ballroom" was far from a bad album). But Silverchair is a different band now. They've made the album we all knew they could make from the beginning.
Someone once said a band's best albums are their first three. How ironic that "Diorama" is Silverchair's fourth, and certainly their most progressive and interesting. Argueably, it's their best, too. One reviewer mentioned that the band sounds like they're trying to make slow dance music for Junior High kids. Even if that were true, so what? Does that make the listener any less intelligent, any less justified? I happen to like the album because I think the song writing is good. I listen to be entertained, not educated. There are much better sources to learn about how the world works than rock music. Sorry, but music isn't a very good substitute for college.
If I could sum up the album's mood in three words, it'd be "The Greatest View." Great song. Soaring chorus, good melody. The painos and orchestration are a step in the right direction, vise vis David Bottrill, whom I've been critical of in the past. Bravissimo! One of the best headphone albums of the last five years. Heck, one of the best albums period of the 2000's. May even sound good at your next Jr. High dance... ;)
Overall: 8 out of 10.
on October 1, 2002
I bought this cd three days ago and it's been living in my player ever since. It was astonishing to hear their different kind of music, something new to the ears. It has a more redefined sound to it as the orchestra and the band complement each other. The first four songs made me buy this album. When I heard Across the Night, I was completely blown away. The harpsichord played a remarkable role as the song began. It was so catchy it got stuck in my head. The Greatest View, Without You and World Uopn Your Shoulders has the same effect on me too. I can't stop myself from singing along to it. The way the song hits you is just...totally indescribable! If you're using earphones, evry single detail will soothe you. I can't describe all the songs for I haven't got enough space. Their lyrics have grown deeper too, up to you to find out...
In the cd inlet, it said that "Diorama" was made without using pitch correction software. This technology 'corrects' notes that are sung or played out of tune and it has become increasingly popular in recent years. Silverchair chose not to use this computer software on their album as it s their personal belief that such artificial perfection dimishes music. Amen to that indeed.
In addition, Daniel expanded his musical horizons for he does not just bang on his guitar but plays the piano and the harpsichord as well.
This album is worth your bucks people! Run to your nearest music store before it's too late.
Behold the evolution.
on September 6, 2002
It's so refreshing in this day and age to witness a band that has enough integrity to be original. Artists like Britney being classed as 'rock' should give you a clear enough indication that music just isn't what it used to be. When it comes to great music, just like great art, to try and 'fit' it in to a certain standard is to take away from it's true beauty.
Such is silverchair's lastest effort Diorama. The Newcastle trio consisting of Daniel Johns, Chris Joannou and Ben Gillies have imagined a masterpiece that no genre in the world could possibly describe. Right away we're taken into a different world, a perhaps unexpected place, with the opening track "Accross the Night". And that's just the beginning.
We are presented the ballad like track "Without You" and musical masterpiece "Tune In The Brine". The upbeat "Luv Your Life" continues the journey as we get a real taste of John's lyrical talents, and perhaps up until now, unheard vocal abilities.
The out of tune notes on the album definately add to the flavour of Diorama. We end up in a place that no silverchair fan of old would ever have expected to be - Daniel Johns, a piano and the occasional violin.
The album is a breath of fresh air. The band has arguably become one of the most original and talened groups of today. Diorama is by far the best album to date of 2002. There's no glossy finish here. Just music. The way it's meant to be played.