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Across Five Aprils Collapse

Across Five Aprils - Collapse
01. Tallahassee's For Hookers
02. Let's Whisper
03. I Will Stop The Rain
04. You're Not Alone
05. Sunnyland
06. With These Hands
07. Bring Me Their Head
08. Miss Mistress
09. Shot Down With Arrows
10. New Management
2006 Indianola Records

Reviewed by: Cory   //   Published: 7/18/2006

Much like Underoath, Thursday, Hopesfall and other bands that share their general style, Across Five April's brand of melodic hardcore/emo has come a fairly long way in the last few years. Their songwriting has improved by leaps and bounds, their general confusion over their sense of band identity seems to have cleared up and, on their third album, Collapse, I can honestly say they've got quite a bit going for them. Fans of the aforementioned bands that wish those bands would get back to playing something a little heavier should find Across Five Aprils' latest right up their alley. This album is packed from front to back with tracks that are loud, fast and catchy. There are frequent missteps in execution, as well as some riffs that are just out of place, but overall these guys achieve what they set out to do admirably.

What caught my interest about Across Five Aprils is that they combine a whole lot of relatively uninspired elements into something that actually worked pretty well. They might have punk, hardcore and emo elements, but it's the "punk" of My Chemical Romance, the "hardcore" of Comeback Kid and the "emo" of Underoath. There are also a handful of breakdowns that sound so bad and out of place that they're not even worth mentioning. When the lyrics aren't too busy being misogynist in that incredibly weak way that emo lyrics are, they're either too vague to connect with or too repetitive to care about. The drums were recorded and Pro-Tooled poorly and the evidence lies in "New Management" and in the last two minutes of "With These Hands," when each successive cymbal hit sounds like your eardrums are popped during flight takeoff. Even the mix is a bit off, but despite these shortcomings, Collapse still remains entirely listenable.

All the standard devices come into play here, from the drawn out anthemic rocker ("With These Hands") to the weakly delivered and sparsely played pseudo-ballad ("Miss Mistress"). There's heartbreak galore, lost friends and even lurid tales of scenester sex on the road. My point is, for better or for worse, all of the tools and clich├ęs of the best and worst bands of this sort are implemented by Across Five Aprils and if you're expecting to hear something different, groundbreaking or even inventive you can look somewhere else. The band's own MySpace page declares them to be as "catchy as an STD" and getting into this disc might be just as embarassing as well, but it just can't be helped.

Bottom Line: This record has its high points and low points, but at the end of the day, if you like this kind of music you'll like this record. While it might be stylistically generic, the songs are catchy and played well enough to appeal to one's pop sensibility. This stuff is so trite and overdone that it's a favorite target of metal critics the world over, but there's no sense in not recognizing when a band does it better than most and Across Five Aprils does. It's a bit like the constant string of Hollywood remakes: It's not going to stop any time soon so you might as well either ignore it completely or give it a chance.

wingman_   posted 12/11/2007 8:28:55 PM
i love this shit. great band, shitty review
arr_   posted 6/19/2007 3:45:47 PM
Are you all f*ckin dumb? 6/10 is the most far off review . this shit sucks.
RyanATF_   posted 1/22/2007 12:09:36 PM
Not the biggest fan of the band, but this is deff. their best album.
A/M_   posted 7/21/2006 3:56:26 PM
The songs are only about Tally because some of the members (including their singer) are from there... funny how they used to not even be connected with Tally and now are. Even funnier that the old singer and new singer (before he took the position) were roommates for a little bit too.
wizardsbeard_   posted 7/21/2006 9:08:13 AM
This review made me sad. Sad to be alive. Just because some shit tastes better than other shit doesn't mean you have to give it a good review.

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