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Diorama

4.5 out of 5 stars 269 customer reviews

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Audio CD, February 28, 2012
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Diorama (U.S. Version) by Silverchair

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The early word was that Silverchair--who at one time could have adopted the hip-hop moniker Lil' Nirvana--on their long-awaited fourth album had morphed into the antipodean Radiohead. But that's a bit of a stretch. Diorama, the band's first release in three years, instead finds the Australian trio shedding the hollow teen angst and beefy riffs of its earlier records in favor of epic melodies, meaningful lyrics, and a markedly more refined sound. The results are staggering. Featuring an orchestra section arranged by Van Dyke Parks, "The Greatest View" is a sweeping and soulful anthem. "World upon Your Shoulders" is a Guns 'N' Roses-caliber power ballad--and that's no bad thing, either. And "Without You" exhibits a determined, gripping delicacy not seen since, well, the last Radiohead album. Another giant leap forward. --Aidin Vaziri
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 28, 2012)
  • Original Release Date: October 5, 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Atlantic Label
  • Run Time: 58 minutes
  • ASIN: B00006916I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (269 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #147,421 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
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.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
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."

Track reviews:
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.
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Format: Audio CD
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
and
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.
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