Release Date: Jun 5, 2012
Record label: XOXO Records
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock
In the current indie sphere, bands that come with a rootsy/folk/Americana tag proliferate, tending to become one large, lumpen mass. But on River City Extension’s sophomore album, Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Your Anger, the eight-piece band proves it is still very possible to stand out in the oversaturated genre. River City Extension finds its niche by taking typical acoustic instruments—upright bass, cello and banjo are all used on the record—and pushing them outside their normal dimensions, incorporating bright indie-pop, punk and country structure, with the slightest touch of world.
Between the string-band revivalists, alt-country troubadours, and groups like the Avett Brothers seeping out of every speaker from here to creation, the world of Americana music is one that has grown a bit saturated, to say the least. River City Extension, however, is one group that rises above the current clutter of acoustic guitars and broken hearts with the release of Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Your Anger, a beautiful collection of songs that manages to sound both authentic and modern. The songwriting on the New Jersey octet’s latest stands well above that of the current crop of hipsters in bolos.
Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Your Anger is a rather lengthy title for a rock album. The designation, rather, seems more in line with a worship service sermon or a psychologist’s aphorism, where the affected audience members are encouraged to make daily changes to their lifestyles. For River City Extension front man and lyricist, Joe Michelini, the phrase, which is paraphrased from Ephesians 4:26 but was heard repeatedly from his mother while growing up, made perfect sense as a heading for his group’s latest album.