Sydney-based alt-country trio, The April Family, has released the third single, ‘Blue Had You’, from their much-awaited second album, House of Cards, due to drop on Friday, July 5.
Blue Had You came about at the end of a long writing day early in the process for the new album. With only 20 minutes or so before home time, Whitney showed Carpenter the lyric concept and 20 minutes later, the song was written around the fingerpicking exercises Carpenter had been doggedly practising. An important track, written around the paralysing effects of depression and anxiety, it’s become a staple in the band’s live show and is the perfect showcase for Whitney’s evolving country/soul style, and the band’s super tight 3 part harmony blend.
The new album, House of Cards, features 11 tracks, all written by vocalist, Kylie Whitney, and the trio’s multi-instrumentalist (and producer), Michael Carpenter, and showcases a leaner, less layered approach. It has a more rootsy sound and feel, with raw but considered production highlighting the band’s unique harmonies, as well as pushing the wide-ranging twang of their guitarist, Casey Atkins, sonic palette.
The growing confidence of the ensemble is reflected in the variety of styles and range of material on the album. From the Americana grit of the first single One Trick Pony, Sorryman and This Road, to the straight country/bluegrass twang of the girliest drinking song in Australian country music, Champagne (also the successful second single), to the weighty roots ballads, Blue Had You, and The One To Set Me Free, all the way to rocking stompers like Friends Like These and Poor Girl’s Blues, this album is a true showcase of a band willing to stretch the dynamic shape of their repertoire and leaning into the closeness that comes with spending time together, on and off stage, as a band.
mixed and mastered by band-member Carpenter (Jetty Road, Abbie Ferris,
Carpenter Caswell, among many others), the album was recorded in several short
bursts at his Love Hz Studios, with Atkins’ lead guitar augmented by Carpenter
on drums and bass and whatever else was needed. The band didn’t have many
visitors during the sessions, but their mate Andrew Cavalieri (The Sweet Jelly
Rolls) did squeeze in some killer harmonica lines on Poor Girl’s Blues,
while Nashville based fiddle player Luke
Moller arranged and performed the strings on the compelling
piano-based track, Adelaide.
Pre-order The April Family’s new album House of Cards on digital here: