I am huge fan of songs that sound a little world weary, and so the December 2022 released Giving Up by April Tapes hits the spot. This is a track that reminds me of misspent teenage years hiding in my bedroom listening to some secret indie treasure or other on my headphones.
Giving Up has that classic indie sound riven through it; from the opening driving riff line to the catchy chorus and that slightly self indulgent concept of “giving up”. It’s always a relief to know I’m not alone with that “giving up” vibe. Giving up is my special treat dear reader.
However, it’s not all doom and gloom with April Tapes, as Giving Up also has a bright and clear sparkle. As well as having a classic indie pedigree, there’s also a feel for a class West Coast harmony and chirpy style; I’m thinking maybe Love or even the Monkees. There’s good breeding in the parentage of this tune. Even Spotify wanted to connect me to the magnificent Jaded Juice Riders after playing April Tapes a few times, so I guess their algorithm caught the same kind of vibe. April Skies.
As for April Tapes, their social media presence is not giving too much away. I do recognise the vocals and musical talent of someone I’ve admired a while and written about quite a few times. Max Stokes (The Levis, 60’s Nightclub) is the lead vocalist and writer of this new beauty. I always like listening to Max, as each tune he is involved with is a development up from the one that came before.
I particularly like Max’s vocals on Giving Up, and not least because of the perfect accompanying voice from Bethan Evans (who astutely describes the song as “a cheery song about giving up”). Also in the mix (quite literally) is Marvin Marvin Productions who has built up an excellent body of production work over recent times.
I don’t know about you, but to my mind things feel pretty shitty and uncertain at the moment – we need tracks like Giving Up in our lives. More please.
* the image is Max Stokes (right) with the evil mastermind CEO of Private Reg Records… image taken from the labels social media.