Review

Song Review: April – Take My Hand

Girl group April have now released seven singles, but as solid as many of those tracks have been, none has felt like the type of moment that might define a unique sound for the girls. In many ways, they’ve been plagued by a common struggle when it comes to rookie acts. Rather than branch out into uncharted territory, their music has been content to copy styles from more established and commercially successful groups. Take My Hand (손을 잡아줘) continues this trend, but at least this time they’re aping the sound of a group I personally love. To put it bluntly, the song feels more like GFriend than GFriend have sounded in months. But like any knockoff, its shortcomings reveal the fact that it’s just not as effective as the original.

One thing Take My Hand gets absolutely right is the instrumental. The propulsive, synth-powered beat employs the kind of relentless drive that has been missing from so many girl group releases these past few months. Bringing in a potent dose of sweeping strings for the chorus, the production feels suitably lush, even if it directly copies so many structural tricks we’ve heard before. Its moments of stop + start + explosive vocal recall Cosmic Girls’ 2016 hit Secret. The two songs share the same producers in e.one, a sort of faceless k-pop composition team who deserve much more notoriety than they garner.

Take My Hand‘s biggest hurdle is its lack of an addictive chorus. It’s not that the melody here is particularly undeveloped or simplistic (a problem that’s been ubiquitous in 2017 k-pop), but its hook just doesn’t quite hit. Instead of mirroring the instrumental’s dynamic punch, the refrain treads water, content to remain aloof rather than explore lower or higher registers that might have given it a more memorable flow. Still, like the aforementioned Secret, I expect Take My Hand will reveal its charms over time. That bombastic bounce at its core certainly keeps things moving at a clip — too fast for those problematic elements to dent the song’s overall effect.

 Hooks 7
 Production 9
 Longevity 9
 Bias 8
 RATING  8.25


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4 thoughts on “Song Review: April – Take My Hand

  1. I think this song resembles more to WJSN’s b-side, Miracle (also by e.one). I thought e.one holding back this song’s potential because afraid of being too similar to other songs. It’s like something missing from the elements.

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  2. I am agreeing with you here (and on the previous 2 Gfriend releases), I instantly was like oh wow this is the Gfriend song I wanted! The synths are excellent and the production is all around quite excellent EXCEPT I think the chorus melody is a bit too dynamic and unexpected. The chord progression is really interesting and it goes some strange places and the vocal line follows it for some cool resolutions but it is a bit unpredictable and therefore VERY hard to learn by ear in less that 5 listens because its complicated. I too think over time ill grow to love it more, once I can follow along more easily

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  3. Pingback: Top Three K-Pop Songs of September 2017 | The Bias List // K-Pop Reviews & Discussion

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