Tokyo Pop Rock band, April in 85, released a new double A-side single earlier this month, titled BEYOND THE RAY/TIME AFTER TIME.
In 2016, yuichi abe (as the musician likes to write it himself) decided after releasing some solo material to be active in a band again. We are now almost four years further and are looking (or rather listening) to the fifth double A-side single of the self-producing band. The musicians working with yuichi in April in 85 are bassist Ayumi Shiraishi (CUICUI), guitarist Maki (CUICUI) and drummer PIROPIRO (ex-HISTGRAM). Time to dive into the music!
BEYOND THE RAY feels like a louder song than the other songs April produced in 85. This is mainly due to the solid intro and chorus in combination with the hectic tempo that the song contains. Still, there seems to be a certain calmness and cheerfulness when the vocals start. The power of the song also lies in the chorus that is started after more than 1 minute and 45 seconds, while the listener already got teased for the chorus twice, which is ultimately very catchy and sticks directly in your head. The song ends with a piece of spoken text that gives a nod to the science fiction film Back to the Future and gives a positive note to the song: “Your future is whatever you make it. So make it a good one.”
TIME AFTER TIME is not an unknown song, as it was originally a single by Cyndi Lauper from 1984. A year earlier the song could be found on her debut album. TIME AFTER TIME is inspired by the difficulties of a romantic relationship with someone and is a ballad. The version of April in 85 is more guitar driven, but remains very faithful to the original version of the song. The use of a keyboard-synth is omitted in the cover, but the guitar play of the second guitar provides more substance in the song. In the reffrain, the drums give an extra dramatic effect, while the quietness in the original is quite present. It makes April in 85 pump more emotion into the song.
Meanwhile, the song TIME AFTER TIME has been made into a music video, by videographer emo kawaguchi (sentaro), in which the band members perform the song in a rehearsal room. It shows that yuichi abe and bassist Ayumi together take on the task of singing. The cover is clearly a tribute to Cyndi Lauper and the Japanese band also hopes that the American singer-songwriter will eventually hear this.
Looking at the gentle TIME AFTER TIME and the swift BEYOND THE RAY, it seems that April in 85 wanted to create some kind of balance with these two tracks on one disk.
With the release of this new single, at the time of the gig at Aoyama RizM where April in 85 shared the stage with bands TEARS OF THE REBEL and IMOCD!, vocalist and guitarist yuichi abe came up with the announcement of a new album for April in 85. This will be a second album for April in 85, which will succeed WONDER WAVE WALKER. The title of the second album is SLEEP IN WHITE and it will be released on April 11, 2020, one day after yuichi’s birthday.