Norway’s The April Skies wear their influences on their sleeve. Literally. The artwork of this promising demo features the covers of 25 of their favourite 45s, with The Stone Roses’ Made Of Stone at its centre. Around it lie some other obvious choices, including The Smiths, Joy Division and, of course, the Jesus And Mary Chain song from which they take their name, alongside a more eclectic mix of Messrs Springsteen, Bush and Pitney.
It’s fair to say that the latter lot are less prominent in The April Skies sound. It’s pretty straight down the middle indie fun, best exemplified by the lead track. It’s a paean to the bands they so openly revere with a sweet chorus line of “Three minute singles on seven inch vinyl, oh yeah, taught us more than we will ever know.” And, yes, it’s almost exactly three minutes long.
Elsewhere, Rise & Rise Again might just be what The Go-Betweens would have sounded like if they’d been on Sarah records in 1987, whilst Heaven Knows It’s Not Too Bad might sound like a reverential nod to Morrissey and co but it’s actually a nippy minute and a half that’s redolent of Ash. Only the ‘demo’ of Not Your Baby lets this down with a melodramatic and musically mediocre tale of a disaffected wife leaving her unappreciative other half, but otherwise the Skies the limit.