Prelude EP by April (DSP Media, 2017)
My response for April’s music video for “April Story” was overall positive but it also made me wonder that, well, I might be too old for this shit. The clip sells a starry-eyed brand of young-girl innocence with the members literally playing porcelain dolls, and the string-led pop backing the group personifies their white lace dresses to a T.
The pop innocence of April is preserved through a borrowing of nostalgia, drawing from more classic pop with soft guitar strums, string embellishments and boogie bass lines. Sure, buzzing synths lights the stage of “Muah!,” but take the kits away, and the kick and bass line makes it a decent disco pastiche. The accents of strings and bells in “April Story” or “Stop the Time” wink back further to the age of classic girl groups, who set the standard of age-appropriate playground romance in pop music.
The pop template followed by April may be a safe route to more easily reap rewards, though it’s far from a statement. And I’m not too confident to say prudence is a major sell this day and age in pop music. That said, their softer approach to youth is a welcome alternative from other girl groups who double down on a bubbly, girly persona or even the older units who work tirelessly to define adult-rated edginess to convey maturity.