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In Memory
April Sixth
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Reviewed: 2/13/2006 by Mike


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Named after the date of their first major concert and not, as previously theorised, the date that Jesus Christ was born, as defined by the Gregorian calendar, April Sixth have been floating around in the void of music limbo land since the 2003 ‘Mariposa Avenue’ e.p. After forming in 2003 in Riverside California and practicing in a barn on ‘Mariposa Avenue’ from whence the e.p took its name, demo’s found there way to producer Howard Benson via Hoobastank’s Dan Estrin who became involved with the production of their debut album. Since it’s recording nearly two years ago, the record label Sony formerly Elektra have pussyfooted around, constantly giving release dates and then changing them at the eleventh hour. Confused by the product and unsure of its appeal the band was eventually dropped by Sony; an incredible lack of business foresight when you consider the success achieved by the likes of Fall Out Boy both in America and the United Kingdom. In the song ‘Dear Angel’, April Sixth have a sure fire hit, which together with the rest of the punk pop/rock crossover material on offer would seem to represent an album that is about as relevant as it can get within the current music climate. Revamped versions of ‘Roses’ and ‘Bring Me Down’ shows clearly the influence that Benson had on the band during recording, being more dynamic and better arranged than previous versions. Lyrically April Sixth are a lot more mature than many of their sycophantic counterparts, choosing to deal with real life experiences rather than the tried and tested tedious juvenile high school rants. Consequently with the slow burning title track and a good many others on offer, emotional experiences are enhanced rather than being trivialised. Another clue to the undoubted commercial potential of April Sixth would be their similarity to other signed major label bands. Although by no means copyists unarguably ‘It’s Not Good Enough’ and ‘Here I Am’ are achingly similar to Island recording artists Die Trying. Here lies the remarkable and bitter irony, whilst other labels, notably Fueled By Ramen and Drive Thru believe in their acts and are clearly pushing bands that embrace the pop punk emo genre Sony/Columbia feels that a relevant band like April Sixth is surplus to requirements; quite an amazing admission during such a helpful era for the genre.

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