Monday, December 4, 2006

The April Skies // Three Minute Singles

The April Skies
Three Minute Singles (EP)
Self-Released

2.5/5

First off, the cover of this four-track EP is a sense of cool. Pictures of singles from profound artists including The Jesus And Mary Chain, Bruce Springsteen, and Lou Reed. The name The April Skies derives from a Jesus And Mary Chain song. So The April Skies would get a check from NME and Pitchfork so far.

The Swedish lads and damsel (Ragnhild Hogstad Jordahl on drums) do some justice on their debut work. Half justice I should say. "Three Minute Singles" begins the album with a pop flare, mixing extreme 60s pop with a touch of the end of an 80s movie. 'A 7 inch vinyl, taught us more than you'll ever know' preaches vocalist Alexander Unhjem. "Rise & Rise Again" follows with more blistering pop. And I swear I hear "You Shook Me All Night Long" by AC/DC in the chorus.

Then the album drops in quality. "Not Your Baby" finds the Skies trying to do some deep-thinking music, concidentally at the end of the album. Seriously, where is this rule about having to end on a slow note? A potentially good chorus is just too messy with vocals and harmonicas getting sprayed all over the place, an attempt to rise the spirit. If they kept the chorus more bare, it wouldn't of had a much better result. "Not Your Baby" is the normal long ending too, clocking in at 4:09, which might not seem long, but it's a minute longer than any other song on the EP. Where is that rule too? Slow + Long + Last Track doesn't equal epic and masterful. Maybe bands want to give me some time to straighten up my album collection and make some room for their jewel case to fit in.

Three Minute Singles shows that The April Skies are on when they're on. Two power house pop songs are enough to lift up the two mediocre draggers at the bottom of the set. The Skies could continue using their idea of a collage on album covers for their greatest hits. Collage all the good singles they had, but don't ever mention the fillers again. Foo Fighters: you have competition.

1) Three Minute Singles
2) Rise & Rise Again
3) Heaven Knows It's Not Too Bad
4) Not Your Baby

The April Skies official site

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