Don’t let the mountain of pillows in the back of Making April’s van fool you. The four 20-something musicians from New York are not likely to be caught laying down on the job. Their unrelenting dedication to their art and a self-imposed goal is, in fact, what spawned the band’s name. Bassist Greg Federspiel explains, “It was March of 2005. After recording our first demos in the studio, we were anxious to put them on Pure Volume and MySpace, yet we didn’t have a name. So we sat there thinking that, ‘we need to have a name by April.’ And so that became the theme of things. Once April 1st came, we still didn’t have anything, and it just hit us. We were trying to ‘make April.’”
This last-minute formula has proven successful for the band, who’s keyboard-playing lead singer, Sean Scanlon, will sometimes write the lyrics for a song as they’re in the studio recording the track. In the past two years–without the aid of a label–the band has released an EP (Runaway World, 2006) here in the U.S., a full-length CD in Japan, had a song featured on season 3 of the hit MTV show Laguna Beach, acquired nearly 80,000 MySpace.com friends, and hauled their bright red trailer of gear all over the east coast. April 21st debuted them at Indianapolis’ historic Emerson Theatre, supporting One Eleven Records’ artists Rookie of the Year, with Foreverinmotion in tow. Locals Translator, Traitor and Dead Of Winter were tacked on to open the show.
Making April played fourth and picked up right where Foreverinmotion’s set left off; alternative Indie rock with a solid foundation. Their lyrics are honest and hearfelt, introspective and moving; evident clearly in the tears of a young girl in the front row as they played their first single, Roses and Butterflies. Keyboardist/singer Sean Scanlon’s voice was a clear, pure instrument of perfection that never faultered or cracked the entire set. Backing vocals and lead guitar, supplied by Steve McCaffrey, brought both harmony and direction while bassist Greg Federspiel and “hip-hop style” drummer Tom Robertine provided an immutable backbone.
“Tom listens to more of like…an underground rap scene,” says Greg. “You can kind of see that in his drumming. The rest of us…it started off with punk music back in the day, like NoFX, Madwagon, and then it kinda morphed into modern-day stuff we all listen to. Like, we’ve seen Dashboard Confessional at Radio City Music Hall…definitely changed everything in terms of having that full-stringed orchestra behind him, and that’s really just where we wanna lead things. Kind of a Coldplay/Dashboard mixture.”
Lacking the budget to hire a studio and touring orchestra, Making April leaped into the digital age thanks to the Apple program Garage Band, and were able to compose and track their own arrangements for their EP, album, and live show. Wired to an amp is the band’s trusty laptop, allowing songs like Runaway World, All Of Yours, and These Are The Nights to come as full to life onstage as they do on the CDs.
Debie and Making April
“Everything on the album that you’ve heard, and Hurry Up And Wait [from the Japanese full-length], is all synth strings,” Greg explains. “It’s something that (most people) probably have not experienced before live. Even though the orchestra is not actually there, you’ll hear it, and it’s something that, really, most people don’t do yet.”
Maybe because they can’t do it as well as Making April? Their live show rivals their recordings full-force. It’s a unique interpretation of the album; a seamless blend of digital and physical presence that has garnered new fans in every city they’ve toured. Summer 2007 will find these guys holed up in the studio working on a new album, but keep an eye out for a tour later in the year. You won’t want to miss it! Be sure you stick around for a while after the stage is cleared, too…Sean and Steve have a pretty cool habit of treating their fans to some breathtaking acoustic sets outdoors once things begin to die down.